Seasonal Southeast!

By Kim McDevitt, MPH RD on August 21, 2014 , categorized in In the Kitchen

in season product

‘Tis the season for Saturday markets and fresh produce galore. For juicy peaches, fresh berries and salad greens that are overtaking your DIY backyard garden.

We decided to catch up with a few Vegatopians located in the Southeast United States to find out not just what’s being harvested right now in their area, but the foods they typically reach for this time of year. Enjoy!

What’s in season?

Summer produce that’s getting picked in abundance right now in the Southeast region includes:

  • Avocados
  • Melons: cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon
  • Green  beans
  • Mangoes
  • Peppers
  • Corn
  • Stone fruits

Here are a few favorite ways Vegatopians enjoy this seasonal produce:

Citrus

Oranges and grapefruits fruits have long been associated with Florida, so it is no surprise that Andrew Weiss, Regional Sales Manager of Southeast mentioned it right off the bat. Juicy, naturally sweet and offering nearly all of your recommended daily value of vitamin C1, fruits like oranges are a great snack or addition to a meal.

Andrew tells us he specially reaches for clementines—those cute mini oranges that are easy to peel—because they “make a great snack any time of day and with a fitness lifestyle they give that added boost. Plus I never turn down vitamin C with all the traveling I do!”

Watermelon

No summer BBQ is complete without watermelon and Candice Arinder, Account Manager in Texas tells us during these hot summer months she’s attending lots of them! Watermelon is low in calories and high vitamins, minerals and water content, helping to keep her hydrated in the heat2.

In addition to serving fresh watermelon slices, try freezing cut chunks and then adding to your next smoothie. Frozen watermelon adds sweetness and frosty thickness to any smoothie and is a must try!

Avocados

Beyond fruit, Kimberly Kyriazis, Account Manager in Florida, says she’s staying away from the hot meals and reaching for (and serving) cold salads. She likes to fill her salads with seasonal, nutrient dense ingredients. Kimberly told us, “With the scorching heat and high humidity here in Florida, instead of hot quinoa, I like to make cold quinoa salads and add cut up peaches, avocados, scallions and different nuts. Yum!”

We think it’s hard to pass up a good avocado any day, especially when they are in season. We love to add them to our morning smoothies, our lunchtime salads and to any dinner menu. Avocados are considered a nutrient dense fruit, rich in healthy monounsaturated fats as well as nearly 20 other vitamins and minerals good for your body3.

Like Kim mentioned, try a simple salad filled with fresh, in-season greens, such as kale or leaf lettuce, juicy tomatoes, quinoa and ripe avocados, such as this one.

What seasonal produce are you reaching for? Share with us your favorite foods and recipes in the comments below! And, for more inspiration head over to the myvega.com recipe center.

References

  1. United States Department of Agriculture. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Oranges, naval. Accessed on 7/11/14 from: http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2361?fg=&man=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=25&offset=&sort=&qlookup=orange
  2. United States Department of Agriculture. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Watermelon. Accessed on 7/11/14 from: http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2468?fg=&man=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=25&offset=&sort=&qlookup=watermelon
  3. United States Department of Agriculture. National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Avocado.  Accessed on 7/11/14 from: http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2234

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Kim McDevitt, MPH RD

Kim McDevitt works at Vega as a National Educator. A runner, cooking enthusiast, plant-focused flexitarian, Kim has passionately built her career in nutrition. Noticing that her running performances were closely tied to what she was eating, Kim decided to study nutrition and pursue advanced degrees in Dietetics and Public Health, to better understand the power of food in performance. Today, Kim specializes in sports nutrition to enhance athletic performance and focuses on realistic and approachable ways for improving health through educated dietary choices within an active lifestyle.

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