Spring has barely sprung, but the warmer weather means the horticulture industry has fresh produce growing and taking centre stage.
It is believed that 2016 is to be the year of the vegetable and while veggies are reigning supreme, fruit appears to be taking some of the limelight. It seems that the summer months will continue to reap the popularity of ‘clean eating’, plant-based diets and raw foods, which is great news for farmers.
Healthy is still on trend. Cauliflower is now considered a trendy side dish and butternut squash is now a noodle. Meanwhile, natural sugars and coconut oil are pushing additives aside.
“Raw is the word”
Supermarkets have adopted the popular trend taking over Pinterest and are now selling vegetable noodles, in attempt to replace our pasta needs. Of course, they cannot as carbohydrates are an important part of a balanced diet, but it is nice to see vegetables becoming so loved.
Sainsbury’s recently launched “boodles”, their butternut squash noodles and “beetroot rice” – both interesting concepts but beautifully coloured and perfect for summer eating.
Exotic is cool
We do like to try new things, but we can often steer clear of the produce that we simply cannot understand what to do with. While shopping seasonal and local is great, exploring the foods grown in more exotic countries can cause excitement.
Treat fruit as an adventure. For example, buy a papaya but do not just put it in the fruit bowl next to your apples – be brave and try adding it to a savoury dish or salad.
The hot vegetables
Kale is still taking the hot spot, closely followed by the avocado. While the kale trend has calmed down, it is still a vital ingredient in green smoothies and juices, which have only grown in popularity.
As well as the growth of green juice, a new produce range, which aims to celebrate “the best of British” through summer, has been announced. Sainsbury’s has taken the lead by launching some colourfully prepared rainbow chard and a new green drink – a cucumber, apple, spinach and kale juice.
Keep an eye out for new produce in your local supermarkets, experiment with recipes and get creative. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive; it can be affordable and enjoyable if you know what to look for!