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Uptown's produce stands will cure your end-of-winter blues

It's winter's home stretch, when even snow stops being exciting. Dying for a tropical escape?

Here's an idea: find your closest Latin American or Caribbean produce stand (there are still a few stores and plenty of street vendors that qualify starting on Broadway at 135th Street and higher) and fill your shopping bag with your favorite tropical fruit and veg. It will instantly transport you to warmer climes.

If you're feeling creative, you can make this eye-catching fruit dish I found on Instagram. You'll need a ripe papaya (or another large oval fruit like pineapple), a bit of yogurt and granola, a few kiwis, bananas, strawberries, and some small dark fruit like blueberries or purple grapes.

Anything else that strikes your fancy is good; a small box of heavenly-smelling guavas was calling my name, so I added it to my cart.

Slice the papaya in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Add a dollop of yogurt and add some sliced fruit on top. If you want, sprinkle a bit of granola for added sweetness and crunch. Grab a spoon and dig in to your own tropical feast–no trip to the airport needed!

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