Kalettes, kiwiberries, butternuts: The best fruit and vegetables to buy this autumn

fruit and veg
Many think of the cooler months as a time where the fruit and veg goes downhill... Photo credit: Getty.

With the cool change in the air this week, it's clear autumn is upon us - which means a change in fashion, weekend plans and of course, what we put on our plates.

While many may think of as the cooler months as not great for fruit and veges (seeya raspberries and avocados), My Food Bag head gardener Naomi 'Nashi' Moses says that's not the case.

Naomi 'Nashi' Moses.
Naomi 'Nashi' Moses. Photo credit: Supplied.

She's given Newshub a sneak peek into some of the latest seasonal, fresh and locally grown produce available at this time of year.

1. What are some of the up and coming trends in the NZ fruit and veg scene?

 

With the colder months comes the best in flavour and quality for root vegetables in particular. Our chefs are experimenting with the unique flavours and textures that come from the many varieties of pumpkin in particular - various butternuts, buttercups and our very own gem squash.

Kalettes are back (when kale and a brussel sprout had a baby) and are not only different but nutritious.

Red kiwifruit will make a splash this winter and some classics return, like rhubarb.

MFB founder Nadia Lim testing out the pumpkin crop this autumn.
MFB founder Nadia Lim testing out the pumpkin crop this autumn. Photo credit: Supplied.

And let's not forget yams in various colours to add some vibrancy to any winter dish - they're coming into their 'prime time' for flavour.

2. If people want to get into growing their own, which seeds are best to plant at this time of year (if any?)

 

Most important in growing winter produce is to consider your regional climate. While brussel sprouts, for example, will likely thrive in the lower North Island and South Island, from Hamilton to Cape Reinga - even in winter the temperatures tend to be too warm for successful crops.

You don't necessarily need to say goodbye to those salads either: choose a hardy lettuce that's suitable for your region, and with some potted tomato colours for colour, and you can enjoy the memories of summer.

Your local plant store is a great source of info, particularly for what's best grown in your region.

3. What are some of the exciting new fruits that Kiwis might not have tried that they should try?

 

Kiwiberries! A fruit grown in the Bay of Plenty, this berry version of the classic Kiwifruit doesn't have furry skin, which means you can eat them whole - yum! Packed with Vit C they're in season now.

Bite-sized Kiwiberries.
Bite-sized Kiwiberries. Photo credit: Produce Geek

A recent innovation is Zespri's red kiwifruit, the latest kiwifruit breakthrough, which is grown in only a handful of orchards in New Zealand.

Blood oranges are in season currently, too - they have a deep dark pulp with a citrus and raspberry like flavour. Delicious in sweet and savoury dishes, they're bringing a little bit of the Mediterranean to your kitchen.

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So you heard the lady, get experimenting with colours and flavours this winter, and maybe try something you've never eaten before!

Newshub. 

 

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