Winter wonders: 7 exotic, energy-boosting winter fruits

https://ec.yimg.com/ec?url=http%3a%2f%2fwww.santosfood.nl%2ffiles%2ftmp%2f500x0-Pink_Guava.jpg&t=1397878097&sig=lqII0swpq1y38NtlK62NDw--~BMove over, bananas! These exotic fruits are full of vivid color, sweet flavor and renewing nutrients to keep you energized.

By Lee Cabot Walker

GUAVA

Buy it: Guava has a slightly spicy flavor, like cinnamon. Bonus: The yellow-to-bright-red beauty gives you as many antioxidants as broccoli does.

Try it: Peel and eat the guava fresh, or puree the pulp and add citrus juice, onion and spices for a sauce to pour over grilled chicken.

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PAPAYA

Buy it: Cut through its thick skin to get the juicy insides: Papaya is a great source of skin-saving vitamin A and papain, an enzyme that aids digestion.

Try it: Use chopped ripe papaya to sweeten spicy tomato salsa. If it's still green, shred and toss with sesame-soy dressing for an Asian slaw.

FEIJOA

Buy it: One cup of feijoa-it has sweet flesh and a jellylike center-nets a hefty dose of folate, which may lower your risk for breast cancer.

Try it: Slice the fruit in half widthwise, skip the skin and scoop out the pulp directly from the shell with a spoon, as you would with a kiwi.

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PRICKLY PEAR

Buy it: It sounds sharp, but the prickly pear is actually mild and tasty. One cup has nearly 10 percent of your daily calcium requirements.

Try it: Most of the rind's needles are removed by the time the fruit reaches your market. Peel and section, discard seeds and add to cereal.

KUMQUAT

Buy it: The kumquat is fully edible-in fact, the skin is the sweetest part. Plus, the grape-sized treats deliver 1 gram of satisfying fiber each.

Try it: Chop up a few, discard the seeds and add to cookie dough or bread batter. Or poach them whole and serve with meat or fish.

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UGLI FRUIT

Buy it: A naturally occurring hybrid of tangerine, grapefruit and orange, one Ugli fruit delivers nearly three quarters of a day's dose of vitamin C.

Try it: Section it as you would an orange. Use the juice in glazes and sauces, or cut up big chunks to add to fruit salad.

CARAMBOLA

Buy it: More commonly known as star fruit, carambola is tart and crunchy. And a large star fruit contains a waist-friendly 38 calories.

Try it: No need to peel it, so toss one into your tote instead of an apple. Cut crosswise to create a star-shaped garnish for drinks or desserts.

Related: Eat healthy all week! Simply buy what's on the shopping list to make a week's worth of tasty, low-calorie meals.

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