A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Papaya
The papaya has a thin nonedible skin colored orange- yellow, red-yellow or yellow-green. Papayas are spherical, or pear-shaped, the fruit contains papain, an enzyme that helps the digestion of proteins. Papayas have a tropical color and deliciously sweet, and are rich in antioxidants and carotenes, vitamin C and flavonoids.
Choose: a papaya with orange-yellow skin over most of its surface that yields to slight finger pressure. The pressure of black spots or mold does not affect the flavor.
Avoid: a papaya that is hard and very green, or one that is very soft or very bruised.
Storing:
At room temperature: for ripening. Place the papaya in a paper bag to speed up the ripening process. Eat as soon as it is ripe.
In the fridge: ripe, a few days.
Excellent source: vitamin C.
Good source: potassium and vitamin A.
Properties: the seeds are used as an anthelmintic remedy.


Pea
Peas come in many forms and sizes but they are usually either bent or straight in shape and are green in color. Fresh peas are known as “green peas” and when dried, “dried peas”. Round peas have less of a sweet taste, than the wrinkled peas. Each pod contains several peas.
Choose: fresh green peas with smooth pods containing a good number of peas that are not too large, and are shiny and bright green in color.
Storing: Do not keep green pea pods longer than 12 hr.
In the fridge: place fresh podded green peas, 4-5 days, in a non-airtight container or a loosely closed plastic bag.
In the freezer: blanch green peas before freezing (1-2 min, depending on size).
Excellent source: potassium and folic acid.
Good source: folic acid, potassium, thiamine and magnesium.


Peach
The peach is a close relative of the apricot, almond, cherry and plum.The skin of the peach is velvety and may be thin or thick depending on the environment in which it grows. The peach has a sweet and juicy flesh and taste. It can be hard or soft, yellow or orange in color.
Choose: perfumed peached that are not too hard.
Avoid: peaches with a green tinge, spots, cracks or bruises.
Storing: handle peaches carefully, as they deteriorate quickly once damaged. Wash peaches only just before using.
At room temperature: 3-4 days. Place peaches in a paper bag to speed up the ripening process.
In the fridge: do not store piled on top of each other. For more flavor, take out of the fridge before eating.
In the freezer: pitted. When the fruit is very ripe, freeze as a compote or purée Adding lemon juice will prevent peaches from blackening.
Good source: potassium.
Excellent source: iron.


Peanuts
They are a great source of vitamin E, niacin, folate, protein and manganese. This type of legume can maintain a healthy heart. As many fruits, peanuts contain antioxidants.
Avoid: old, spotted, blackened, rancid or moldy peanuts, as they can be contaminated by a type of mold.
Storing: raw peanuts deteriorate more quickly than roasted peanuts.
At room temperature: place roasted peanuts in a cool and dry spot.
In the fridge: raw, in an airtight container ( 9 months in the shell or 3 months shelled).
In the freezer: in the shell, 6 months; shelled, 3 months.


Pear
Pears are instilled with important antioxidants, flavonoids, and dietary fiber while featuring a mild, sweet taste. The skin of the pear is either yellow, brown, red, or green.
Choose: smooth pears that are firm but not too hard, with no bruises or mold.
Storing:
At room temperature: for ripening.
In the fridge: ripe, a few days. As pears are fragile, do not store on top of one another and avoid placing them in a bag or airtight container. Keep away from apples, onions, potatoes, cabbages and other strong smelling foods.
In the freezer: cooked.
Contains: potassium and copper.
Excellent source: potassium.
Good source: copper and iron.


Plum
The different varieties of plum are usually grouped into six main species: the European plum “the common plum”, the Japanese plum is yellow, crimson, purple or greenish in color. The American plum, the damson plum, the ornamental plum and the wild plum are all different types of plum. Every type is seasonal and they all belong to Prunus genus of plants and are relatives to the peach, nectarine and almond.
Choose: perfumed plums with well-colored skin that yields to light finger pressure.
Avoid: hard plums with little color, ones that are not yet ripe, and very soft, bruised or spotted plums.
Storing: plums are moderately perishable.
At room temperature: for ripening.
In the fridge: ripe, a few days.
In the freezer: pitted.


Pomegranate
The pomegranate’s outer skin is not edible, it is usually red in color and has plenty of edible seeds and juice that contain a high level of vitamin C and antioxidants. It also contains a high level of vitamin K that helps support bone health, it is packed with fiber and some level of protein.
Choose: a large-sized, colorful pomegranate that is partially tinted brown, heavy and without spots.
Avoid: a wrinkled pomegranate with dull or low-colored skin.
Storing:
At room temperature: a few days.
In the fridge: 3 weeks.
In the freezer: only the seeds.
Good source: potassium.
Contains: vitamin C and pantothenic acid.


Potato
Potatoes are perennial plants, and are one of the largest crops grown. Potatoes have high water content and are packed with starch. They can be cooked, baked, fried, steamed, roasted, mashed, and placed in salads.
Choose: firm, intact, potatoes, with no sprouts or green parts.
Storing:
At room temperature: 9 months, at a temperature no higher than 4°C. potatoes can be kept about 2 months in a dark, dry, cool and ventilated place at a temperature of 7°C to 10°C. Avoid keeping potatoes in a pantry at room temperature, as this encourages sprouting and dehydration.
In the fridge: new potatoes, cooked potatoes or very old potatoes, 1 week. Keep them away from strongly flavored foods such as onions. Potatoes can also be dried or preserved.
Excellent source: potassium.
Good source: vitamin C.
Contains: vitamin B6, copper, niacin, magnesium, folic acid, iron and pantothenic acid.
Properties: raw potato juice is said to be antispasmodic, diuretic, antiscorbutic, and cicatrizing. Potato is used to treat inflammations, sunburn and other burns, and cracked skin.


 

Prickly Pear
Prickly pear cactus is originally known as a berry and its older plant form is too rough to be eaten. It is packed with numerous edible seeds and is often used for medicine. The color of its skin ranges from green to yellow, orange, pink or red, depending on the type.
Choose: intact prickly pears that are not wrinkled and have no marks. Pears that still have their spikes must be handled carefully.
Storing: 
At room temperature: for ripening. Eat as soon as it is ripe.
In the fridge: ripe, a few days.
Excellent source: magnesium.
Good source: potassium.
Contains: calcium, vitamin C and sodium.