Vegetables

ArtichokesChoose globes that have tight leaves and feel heavy for their size. The leaves should squeak when pressed against each other.
AsparagusChoose firm, smooth, and brightly-colored stalks with compact tips. Avoid limp stalks. Choose stalks of equal thickness to ensure even cooking times.
AvocadosChoose avocados that feel slightly soft to the touch. Firmer avocados may be ripened at home, but avoid rock-hard ones. Also avoid avocados with cracks or dents.
 BeetsChoose firm beets with fresh stems and slender taproots. Avoid beets with wilted leaves, scaly tops, or large, hairy taproots as they may be older and more woody.
Bok ChoyFor mature bok choy, look for dark green leaves and bright white stalks. Baby bok choy should be light green in color.
BroccoliChoose broccoli with firm stalks, tight florets, and crisp green leaves. Avoid yellowed or flowering florets.
 Brussels SproutsChoose firm, compact, bright green heads. Avoid sprouts with wilted or loose outer leaves.
CabbagesChoose firm, compact heads that feel heavy for their size. Check that the stems are also fresh and compact.
CarrotsChoose firm, smooth carrots without rootlets. 


CauliflowerChoose heads with tightly packed, creamy white florets. Avoid yellowed, spotted, or flowering florets.
CeleryChoose firm, unblemished stalks. The stalks and leaves should be green, not yellow.
Celery RootChoose firm, hard roots that feel heavy for their size. Any attached leaves should be fresh and green.
CornChoose corn with bright green husks and moist but not slimy silk. Peel back the husk to ensure the kernels are plump and not dry.
CucumbersChoose cucumbers that are uniformly green (not yellow).
EggplantsChoose eggplants that have smooth, naturally shiny skin and feel heavy for their size. When gently pressed, flesh that gives slightly and then bounces back indicates ripeness. Unripe flesh will not give, while overripe flesh will remain indented. Also, smaller eggplants tend to have fewer seeds and be less bitter.
 FennelChoose fennel with white, firm, unblemished bulbs as well as firm stems and fresh leaves.
GarlicChoose firm, plump heads. Avoid heads with soft spots or green sprouts.
 Green BeansChoose slender beans that snap rather than bend. Avoid bulging or dried pods.
Jerusalem ArtichokesChoose smooth, firm tubers. Avoid those with green spots or sprouts.
KaleChoose crisp, deeply-colored leaves. Avoid yellowed leaves. Smaller leaves tend to be more tender. 


 LeeksChoose firm leeks with tightly-rolled tops. Slender leeks tend to be younger and more tender, while larger ones with rounded bulbs tend to be older and more woody.
 Lettuce, Spinach, and Other Leafy GreensChoose greens with fresh, crisp leaves. Avoid any that are wilted or slimy.
Onions and ShallotsChoose dry, firm bulbs that feel heavy for their size. Avoid any with soft spots or green sprouts.
ParsnipsChoose firm, ivory-colored roots. Large roots may be fibrous, so choose small and medium ones for better texture and flavor.
PeasChoose crisp, green pods. Avoid bulging, dried, yellow, or white pods.
 PeppersChoose firm, naturally shiny peppers that feel heavy for their size.
 Potatoes Choose firm, smooth potatoes. Avoid those with bruises, green spots, or sprouts.
RadishesChoose radishes with fresh, green tops and firm, unblemished roots.
RhubarbChoose firm pink or red stalks. Green stalks tend to be stringy and sour.
 RutabagasChoose rutabagas that feel firm and heavy for their size. Avoid any with holes or bruises.
Scallions Choose scallions with crisp, green tops and firm, white bulbs. Avoid wilted or browned scallions.
Summer SquashChoose squash with naturally shiny, taught, unblemished skin. Avoid squash that appear dull or have soft spots.
Sweet Potatoes and YamsChoose potatoes with firm, unwrinkled skins and no bruises or cuts, as they are highly perishable.
 Swiss ChardChoose chard with crisp stalks and shiny, bright, unwilted leaves.
TomatillosChoose green tomatillos with green husks. Avoid yellow fruits with brown husks.
TomatoesChoose tomatoes that are fragrant, smell earthy at the stem end, and feel heavy for their size. Avoid tomatoes with wrinkled skins.
TurnipsChoose squash that have stems intact and feel heavy for their size. Avoid squash with cuts or soft spots.
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