What's in Season Right Now
From plums in San Francisco to blueberries in Boston, we have the freshest food to eat this minute in every Equinox city.
With farmer’s markets at their everything’s-in-season glory right now, choosing which produce to carry home can be the hardest part of shopping. Here, a few insider recommendations from top farmer’s markets across the country.
The Market: Ferry Plaza Farmers Market
The Find: Plums
Why Buy: A good source of Vitamins A and C, plums are plentiful in San Francisco this month. One vendor, Tory Farms, has 11 different varieties of plums this time of year; each is usually only in the market for one week. With so many plum varieties to choose from, Santa Rosas are crowd favorites at the market thanks to their rich, tangy flesh.
The Market: The Farmers Market LA at Third and Fairfax
The Find: White Peaches
Why Buy: White-fleshed peaches have less acid which means they taste sweeter and can be enjoyed for dessert without added sugar. Try them sliced and sauteed with a sprinkle of cardamom or halved and grilled with a drizzle of balsamic.
The Market: Pinecrest Gardens Farmers Market
The Find: Dragonfruit
Why Buy: Tropical fruits are prevalent in Miami, and summer marks the beginning of dragonfruit season. This antioxidant-rich fruit has a hot pink, spiky exterior and antioxidant-rich flesh that tastes similar to a kiwi. Dragonfruit also contains a hidden bonus: Edible seeds that are packed with omega-3 fatty acids.
The Market: Union Square Greenmarket
The Find: Tiger Melon
Why Buy: These small striped melons are a hit with city shoppers who find them easier than full-sized melons to lug home on the subway. Tiger melons taste a bit like cantaloupe, but have a light, pale flesh. Look for melons with strong fragrance at the stem, which indicates ripeness and best flavor.
The Market: The Dupont Circle FRESHFARM
The Find: Cardoons
Why Buy: Popular in France and Italy, a local chef brought cardoon seeds to a farmer a few years ago after being unable to find the vegetable anywhere else in the area; now is the tail end of their growing season. Cardoons look like extra-large celery stalks and taste a bit like artichoke. They’re rich in potassium, calcium, and iron and are best eaten blanched or sauteed with fresh herbs and lemon.
The Market: Islington Farmers’ Market
The Find: Cherries
Why Buy: During peak cherry season, there can be up to 15 different varieties coming from a specialist grower in Kent. Deep red cherries are packed with anti-inflammatory polyphenols, which can help reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer. Plus, keep an eye out for fresh-pressed cherry juice at the market, it comes straight from the orchard.
The Market: Summit Farmers Market
The Find: Tomatoes
Why Buy: Tomatoes are the official state vegetable of New Jersey, so it’s no surprise that the they’re in abundance here during their peak season. Lycopene, the antioxidant that gives tomatoes their red color, is absorbed more readily by your body when paired with a bit of fat, so serve thick slices of fresh tomatoes drizzled with olive oil and a bit of coarse salt.
The Market: Copley Square Farmers Market
The Find: Blueberries
Why Buy: Anthocyanin antioxidants in blueberries have been linked to better heart health and cognitive function. The good news: Research shows that freezing berries won’t break down beneficial compounds. To freeze, wash and thoroughly dry berries and arrange in a single layer on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Freeze until berries are firm, then transfer to zip-top bags to enjoy best-ever blueberry flavor even in the middle of winter.
The Market: St. Lawrence Market
The Find: Nectarines
Why Buy: Unlike peaches, nectarines have a smooth, fuzz-free skin so even picky eaters won’t need to peel them — great news for shoppers who want the extra fiber in the skin. Though tempting to use in desserts, ripe, seasonal nectarines in Toronto are sweet and juicy enough to enjoy on their own or diced and stirred into tart greek yogurt.
The Market: New Canaan Farmers Market
The Find: Lima Beans
Why Buy: Though you may have turned your nose up at lima beans as a child, farm-fresh beans are something worth trying again: Their creamy flesh and buttery flavor adds something special to summer salads. Plus, they’re packed with plant-based protein, fiber (a cup has more than half of what you need for the day), and potassium.
The Market: Celebration Market at Celebration Restaurant
The Find: Okra
Why Buy: Three bright-green okra pods have just 30 calories but pack three full grams of fiber. Forget the deep-fryer (a traditional way of serving okra in the South) and try it in the steamer basket instead. Quick-cooking okra takes just about three minutes to steam.
The Market: Green City Market
The Find: Eggplant
Why Buy: We're partial to any plant whose flavors sing on the grill, but eggplant is also worth loving for it's fiber-richness and phenolic acids, including those with anti-cancer properties. With just 19 calories per cup, feel free to dig in (one with creamy flesh and glossy skin is ready to eat.)