Tips & Hints > Miscellaneous > Vegetables


Every good housekeeper will supply her table with a variety of vegetables all the year round. One can hardly think of a vegetable, either fresh or canned, that cannot be had in our markets at any season. The railroads and steamers connect the climes so closely that one hardly knows whether he is eating fruits and vegetables in or out of season. The provider, however, realizes that it takes a long purse to buy fresh produce at the North while the ground is yet frozen. Still, there are so many winter vegetables that keep well in the cellar through cold weather that if we did not have the new ones from the South, there would be, nevertheless, a variety from which to choose. It is late in the spring, when the old vegetables begin to shrink and grow rank, that we appreciate what comes from the South.

Buying Vegetables

If one has a good, dry cellar, it is economy to procure in the fall vegetables enough for all winter, but if the cellar is too warm the vegetables will sprout and decay before half the cold months have passed. Those to be bought are onions, squashes, turnips, beets, carrots, parsnips, cabbages, potatoes and Jerusalem artichokes, all of which, except the first two, should be bedded in sand and in a cool place, yet where they will not freeze. Squashes and onions should be kept in a very dry room. The price of all depends upon the supply.

When in Season

Bermuda sends new potatoes into Northern markets about the last of March or first of April. Florida soon follows, and one Southern State after another continues the supply until June, when the Northern and Eastern districts begin. It is only the rich, however, who can afford new potatoes before July; but the old are good up to that time, if they have been well kept and are properly cooked.

Cabbage is in season all the year.

Beets, carrots, turnips and onions are received from the South in April and May, so that we have them young and fresh for at least five months. After this period they are not particularly tender, and require much cooking.

Squashes come from the South until about May, and we then have the summer squash till the last of August, when the winter squash is first used. This is not as delicate as the summer squash, but is generally liked better.

Green peas are found in the market in February, though they are very expensive up to the time of the home supply, which is the middle of June, in an ordinary season, in the Eastern States. They last until the latter part of August, but begin to grow poor before that time. There is a great variety, some being quite large, others very small. The smaller are the more desirable, being much like French peas. When peas are not really in season it is more satisfactory to use French canned peas, costing forty cents a can. One can is enough for six persons. When buying peas, see that the pods are green, dry and cool. If they have turned light they have been picked either a long time or when old.


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