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July 29, 2011 / Katie

Ginger Root & Winter Melon

Produce deals in Chinatown are the best to be had in all of New York City. On any day of the week, thrifty shoppers and cooks in search of the freshest ingredients can head down to Forsyth Street and find a wealth of fruits and veggies. From afar, this makeshift farmer’s market looks like a caravan of nondescript moving trucks, but once you get close, a long line of sidewalk stalls comes into view. Simply follow the vibrant hues of tomatoes and turnips, eggplants and snap peas, ginger root and winter melon that wind down the side of the Manhattan Bridge.

Sweet Deals:

  • Two pineapples for $1
  • A box of mangoes for $6
  • Two pounds of spring onions for $1.75
  • Seven lemons for $2
  • Three pounds of bok choy for $1
  • Four pounds of yams for $1
  • Sixteen persimmons for $5

But how do these vendors stay in business with prices so low? The answer is volume. As a community, Chinatown consumes a sizable amount of fresh produce per capita each day. It’s part of the traditional Chinese lifestyle to head over to the market in the morning and buy ingredients for that night’s home-cooked meal. You often see people on the D train or walking through the neighborhood with several red plastic bags hanging from their wrists heavy with food. One thing to beware of, though, is that many vendors sell fruits and vegetables that are meant to be consumed within 1-2 days, so don’t let them sit in your kitchen for too long. For more about the lively produce business in Chinatown, checkout Lisa Chow’s report on WYNC.

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One Comment

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  1. Shelley / Jul 29 2011 8:25 pm

    love the pics here. it’s rare that i trust chinatown produce but you’re right…they must be consumed basically the day of!

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