Are All Vegetables Equal? (No)

Organic produce used to seem overhyped and overpriced to me, unless we were talking about edibles which grew underground. Potatoes and other tubers have a tendency to absorb more harmful chemicals that seep into soil (from fertilizers and pesticides) simply because they grow underground. Turns out, there are other vegetables that should be bought organic (according to Mercola and Dirty Dozen/Clean Fifteen).

Buy the following organic, or don’t eat them at all:

  • Peaches
  • Apples
  • Sweet bell peppers
  • Hot peppers
  • Celery
  • Nectarines (imported)
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Lettuce
  • Grapes (imported)
  • Pears
  • Spinach
  • Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Kale
  • Summer squash

Mostly OK to buy unorganic vegetables:

  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Banana
  • Kiwi
  • Asparagus
  • Sweet peas (frozen)
  • Mango
  • Pineapple
  • Sweet corn (frozen)
  • Avocado
  • Onion
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Papaya
  • Mushrooms
  • Grapefruit
  • Eggplant
  • Cantaloupe

I’m pleased to see mushrooms are on the clean list!

Sidenote: Chanterelle mushrooms are in season right now. At Whole Foods, they look fresher than they usually do, so I went out on a limb and brought some home. I was curious because I’ve heard tons of stories about how delicious, delicate, wonderful, etc. they are. I gently cleaned them with a soft cloth, sliced them, sauteed them in olive oil, butter, garlic and thyme. My overall impressions: over-hyped. I found them to be flat; all texture and no flavor. Their taste must be too subtle for me. Not worth $50/lb.

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