In everyday kitchen life, the distinction between vegetables and fruits may seem clear-cut. But nature has a way of blurring the lines between these two food categories. Prepare to be surprised as we reveal some common foods that you always thought were vegetables, are technically fruits. This confusion arises because certain foods, though biologically classified as fruits, are predominantly used in savoury dishes as vegetables. In botanical terms, a fruit develops from the ovary of a flowering plant and contains seeds, while vegetables encompass other plant parts like roots, leaves, and stems. It's not necessary that all fruits are sweet and all vegetables are savoury.
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Here're 9 Vegetables That Are Actually Fruits:
While cucumbers may seem like a regular vegetable, they are actually fruits. With their high water content and crisp texture, cucumbers are a refreshing addition to salads and summer dishes. They offer a cooling effect, making them ideal for hot days.
The humble tomato, widely mistaken for a vegetable, is indeed a fruit. It grows from the flower's ovary, housing the plant's seeds within its juicy flesh. This vibrant tangy food not only enhances salads, sauces, and sandwiches but also fills them with antioxidants, vitamins and other nutrients.
Known for its meaty texture and ability to absorb flavours, eggplant (or brinjal) is surprisingly a fruit. If you slice open an eggplant and observe closely, you'll find numerous tiny seeds in its flesh. That makes it a fruit belonging to the berry family, and not a vegetable.
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4. Bell Peppers
Peppers, whether they are red, green, or yellow, belong to the fruit family. While their culinary uses may disguise them as vegetables, botanically, they fall under the fruit category. Nevertheless, bell peppers are packed with flavour and nutritional benefits.
5. Lady's Fingers
Surprised? Yes, your beloved bhindi is biologically a fruit! Bhindi is the soft green, edible seed pod of a flowering plant. It's also known as "lady's fingers" due to its slender shape. Still, it is used as a vegetable to create delicious savoury dishes like kurkuri bhindi.
Creamy, rich, and undeniably delicious, avocados are closer to being fruits than vegetables. Technically classified as a single-seed berry, avocados are the matured ovaries of flowers. Popular for their healthy fats and nutritional value, avocados' buttery green flesh levels up our meals like avocado toast and guacamole.
7. Green Peas
Don't let their green colour fool you! Peas are not vegetables but small, round seeds enclosed in pod fruits. These pods develop from the pea flower and belong to a plant species known as Pisum sativum.
Although its enormous size might suggest otherwise, the pumpkin is, in fact, a fruit. It's filled with seeds, just like other fruits, and possesses a subtle sweet taste derived from the plant itself. Moreover, pumpkins are versatile enough to be used in both sweet and savoury dishes.
Olives are a staple in Mediterranean cuisine, and we often find them on our pizzas and in our salads. But you should know that olives are fruits of the olive tree. They form from the ovary of the olive flower and contain tiny pits, which are the seeds.
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Even after knowing this, we'll still use these food as vegetables but isn't it good to know the truth?