Health

11 Foods You'd Be Stupid Not to Eat in August

Published On 08/02/2016 Published On 08/02/2016
fried calamari squid
Anthony Humphreys/Thrillist

Hey there, Food Fans! August here, ready to squirt lemon juice at your eyehole in the form of oppressive humidity, late-summer restlessness, election-cycle Facebook rants, and the realization that you've squandered away two-thirds of the year. 

But there's good news, Food Fans: it's still summer, and the fields and streams continue to burst with living plants and animals you'll unceremoniously kill and devour to sustain yourself. What, you've never been called a "Food Fan" by an anthropomorphized month before? Chill out, dude, and start eating these seasonal foods as all your worries fade into the 98-degree heat (band AND weather). 

Flickr/Suzie's Farm

Hungarian hot wax peppers

If you need a sultry, sexy addition to your pepper game, look no further than the Hungarian hot wax edition, good for fetishists and normies alike. Like Hungary itself, you never know what you're going to get in terms of spice level with Hungarian waxers, which is what they should be called -- their Scoville range is 5,000 to 10,000, hotter than your average jalapeño. If you pickle them, you'll have hot, waxy action deep into autumn, not to mention the health benefits of capsaicin. What's not to like? 

Calamari

"Calamari" is so much nicer than "squid," but squid is what you'll be eating. Bonus points if you can get the ink, too, that way you'll never get tumors, which is how you should start every conversation from August onward: "Hi, how are you? I would like to inform you that the body you're interacting with has zero tumors." 

Are there more sustainable options in the sea? Sure! But are there more sustainable lifestyles than your current one, which consists mostly of Funyuns, beer, and too much sitting? Probably. Doesn't mean you have to, or even should, change anything. Eat your fried calamari, dammit. 

Flickr/UncleBucko

Eight-ball zucchini

I just LOVE zucchini, man, you know what I mean? This zucchini is the most beautiful zucchini, just so fucking… I don't know, it's just great. I'm so AMPED on summer produce, bro, I just wanna scoop this thing out, then stuff it with some herbs, cheese, and bake an egg in it. It sounds fucking delicious, right!? Wow, I just got super sad.

Oh, wait, these are named after the eight ball used in billiards. Of course. Beyond that, they're a fun new look for the zucchini, so you'll still get your vitamin C.

Flickr/cskk

Pineapple sage

True fact: Art Garfunkel wanted the lyrics to be "Pineapple sage, delicious each time," but Paul Simon smacked him across the face in an eight-ball zucchini rage and screamed, "You stick to singing and let ME do the wording!" The world would've been better off if Art got his way, because it just might help alleviate anxiety! You can go ahead and use both the leaves and flowers muddled in your favorite summer drink, provided you like a pineapple-y and sage-y essence in that drink.

Flickr/Suzie's Farm

Yellow wax beans

Cranberry beans couldn't satiate your lust for oddly colored, stringy vegetables? It's still bean season, dawg! After you make an appointment with your psychiatrist, seek out some yellow wax beans -- these jaundiced buggers taste like... a waxier green bean. Hmm. Nothing wrong with that, we can't all be special, and even though yellow wax bean's older brother, the green bean, has fame, fortune, and smarts, the yellow wax bean is kind and has a good personality. Try these lightly steamed with some mint, lemon, and olive oil for a summer side that will stuff you to bursting with all kinds of beneficial phytochemicals

What's with all the hot wax action this August?! 

Flickr/Melanie Levi

Raw honey

That viscous junk that comes in the shape of a bear doesn't hold a candle to the raw version, which contains fun substances like "pollen" and "wax" (even more wax) and "royal jelly" and "Apollo's body fluids." Raw honey is typically opaque and solid at room temperature, making it an ideal spread for toast or your tongue. If you can resist eating all of it, raw honey is actually a pretty legit wound treatment, which may come in handy after all that hot wax action. 

Buyer beware: the cutthroat honey game is full of fraud and theft, so stay on your toes when shopping for premium product. 

Flickr/K.B.R.

Chioggia beets

Look at those things! It's like God planted an optical illusion into the ground for you to dig up, roast, and mix into a yellow wax bean salad. This would be a good time to point out that these foods should under no circumstances be combined into one giant smoothie; there's such a thing as too much health. 

Anyway, beet juice was 100% responsible for the remarkable run the 2013 Auburn Tigers made on their way to the national title game, so you should eat and drink beets, too. Roll Tide, as the Tigers would say!

Flickr/Michael Bentley

Graffiti eggplant

It's about time we started showing eggplant the respect it deserves by changing the name of this guy to "street-art eggplant," now that Banksy is driving up property prices and Shepard Fairey is a political propagandist. Until the rest of the world catches up, you'll have to seek out these smallish eggplants for roasting and turning into a baba ghanoush, which will show your family that you're an adult who can make baba ganoush all on your own now! A DIABETES-FREE adult, to boot!

Flickr/Jessica Spengler

Trout

There's nothing better than escaping the city, finding a little stream out in the country, and writing the Truth about the world, the way a man should write, simple, direct, straightforward. Then, like a real man, you go out fly-fishing for your own trout, which are high in omega-3s and quite similar to salmon, after which you drink yourself into a stupor before killing yourself in Ketchum, Idaho. Actually, maybe you should just do some fishing, cook up some trout over the grill, and forget about all that other stuff. 

Flickr/liz west

Broccoli

Uh oh. This is one -- if not two -- of the horsemen that signal the brassica apocalypse (Brassicapocalypse) that happens every winter when you and your finest sow are left to ride out the icy nights on mushrooms and roots you foraged during the day. That's in the future; for now, you can use the florets of this year's earliest broccoli crop for whatever you normally use them for, presumably something covered in butter and cheese, and turn the stalks into a light summer slaw. Remember all those things you were going to do this summer? All you have to show for your well-laid plans is this vitamin C- and antioxidant-packed slaw! 

Drew Swantak/Thrillist

Mail-order steak

Oh, remember what silly times you used to live in, with your phones tethered to walls, your relationships conducted in person, your television taped straight to your VCR, your steaks delivered right to your door? Make this a true throwback summer by participating in the timeless tradition of mocking old trends that appear ridiculous in retrospect. Like mail-order steaks. Who wants frozen steak delivered to them? You don't know where that steak's been!

Thankfully, we've totally moved beyond the model of having strange food dropped off at our doorsteps. Now we can connect more deeply with our meals, which is what being a true Food Fan is all about. 

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Anthony Schneck is the Health editor at Thrillist. Buy his steaks @AnthonySchneck

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