General Information: Carrots are a native of Afghanistan. They were originally red, purple and black in their color. The yellow and orange varieties were developed in Holland during the 17th Century. The fresh carrots found in Swiss markets are usually of a French variety, and they are either yellow or orange.

Season: Carrots are available year around. Fresh European carrots begin to arrive on the market in early Spring. These young carrots are best purchased between March and May. There are an abundance of mature sweet carrots available in Switzerland during middle- to late summer. The colorful yellow, orange and purple varieties are best during the cold months.

Purchasing Tips: Fresh carrots should have bright greens and be firm and smooth. Avoid cracked or softened carrots. In mature carrots, avoid green blotches, which is an indication of over ripeness.

Storage Tips: Young carrots can be stored in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Remove the greens as soon as possible because they will rob the roots of moisture and vitamins. Mature carrots can be stored for 7-10 days. Avoid storing carrots near apples, because the ethylene gas emitted from Apples can make carrots taste bitter.

Cooking Tips: Young carrots only need a good rinsing. Most of the flavor and vitamins in younger carrots are in the skin. Older carrots should be thinly peeled. If carrots go limp, they can be re-crisped in a bowl of ice water. Carrots can be cooked in many ways, and also eaten raw. The core of older carrots can be bitter, and should be removed. Carrots can be peeled ahead of time, but they should be wrapped in a damp towel and kept in the refrigerator. If peeled carrots are not wrapped, they will oxidize and darken.

Nutritional Info: Excellent source of vitamin A


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