By Agnes Kyotalengerire
PRICES for matooke have continued to drop bringing the price to as low as sh4,000 a bunch in most markets. Likewise, there is plenty of maize, cassava, sweet and Irish potatoes on the market. Traders attribute this is to the harvest season.
Although the season for fresh foods and fruits is on, buying food is one thing and choosing the good food is another.
However, amid the shopping dilemma, it is important that you choose food that is fresh and mature. Below are tips to guide you:
Avocado is among the fruits that have flooded the market. A heap of four to five costs sh1,000. However, when buying avocado, it is difficult to tell the mature fruit. Some vendors harvest them before they are mature enough for consumption. Therefore, you need to shake it and if it is mature, the seed inside shakes.
The season of mangoes is on and a heap of five to 10 small ones costs sh1,000, while four to five big size mangoes cost sh1,000. When choosing mangoes for a fruit salad or to be eaten plain, the semi-ripe ones will do for you.
If your intention is to make juice, choose the ripe ones, but you need to avoid the over ripe ones because they ruin the taste and aroma of the juice.
Do not choose a bunch that has withered. To identify fresh matooke, break the tip of the banana finger. A fresh bunch will produce sap as opposed to the one that has overstayed.
Avoid buying a damaged bunch, however low the price may be. The damaged fingers rot and ripen faster.
If you are buying a bunch to last you a week, choose the semi-mature, this will not ripen fast.
Cassava and sweet potatoes are also challenging to buy. However, good cassava/potatoes should be fresh. The fresh tubers are always covered with fresh soil. Also, when you break the tip of the tuber; it is white inside without yellow stripes.
Choose tubers without damage. The damaged tubers rot easily.
To avoid buying sour cassava, let the vendor allow you break the tip and chew it before commiting yourself.
Good Irish has a yellow pulp (inside) with a reddish skin. It is normally grown in mountaneous areas like Kabale and Kisoro areas. Scratch off the skin to make sure it is good. Such Irish makes good French fries and does not puree when boiling.