We Americans have a long history of throwing out less-than-perfect fruit. No wonder food waste in this country is up to about 133 billion pounds annually, or one-third of the food we purchase. While this isn’t entirely attributable to our culture’s habit of discarding ugly produce, it is a factor. We like to walk into the produce department at our local grocery store and see polished apples and perfectly uniformed carrots.fruits and vegetables, you might have noticed they almost never sprout as uniformly as the ones you see in the supermarket.
Leave it to the French to be the trendsetters in vegetable tastes. Last year, French supermarket chain Intermarché launched a marketing campaign to promote the use of ugly produce. Ugly fruit doesn’t exactly look beautiful in our fruit bowls, but while we display unblemished banana and pears, we should consider what ugly fruit can do for us. Ugly fruit is just as nutritious, sometimes tastes riper, and when you adjust your perceptions, actually looks pretty cool. So next time you think of passing up that lopsided grapefruit at the farmers market or instinctively toss the slightly bruised apple, think about the ugly fruit. If you’re willing to give ugly fruit a try, check out these fruitful recipes.
Fruit Hand Pies
Whole Foods Market
Angela Carlos is the Cook Editor at The Daily Meal. Find her on Twitter and tweet @angelaccarlos.