Friday, December 19, 2014

Holiday Tasting At Lucky's

If you are scouting around for new ideas for your holiday table, the Lucky's Market in Boulder will be holding a Holiday Tasting Fair tomorrow, the 20th from 11 to 2.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Weekend Sales At Whole Foods

Our local Whole Foods stores will offer us a sextet of special sales for tomorrow through Sunday, the festive weekend before Christmas. Twin packs of game hens will be $2 off at $3.99 a pound, tamales (a favorite New Mexico Christmas tradition) in the prepared foods section will be 82 cents off at three for $5, Robusto cheese will be $5 off at $13.99 a pound, Kiss My Face continuous spray lotion will be half off at $4.99 each, and since I personally can't stand coconut, I shudder to report that Crazy for Coconuts Ocho bars will be four for $5, and their Harmless Harvest Coconut Water will be two for $7.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

This Week's Hot Grocery Deals (IMHO)

And what a week it is, with the holidays. We have new sales starting today at our Boulder Sprouts and Whole Foods stores, and I need to find out what's happening at Vitamin Cottage since the end of its most recent sale. Here's what's looking good to me now.

At Sprouts through December 24th (and mercifully the flyer says they will be closed on the 25th), their "Presidential Cut" standing rib roast is $7.99 a pound (that's the price for Choice grade - ad says Prime is also available), value packs of boneless skinless chicken breasts are $1.99 a pound, fresh turkeys are $1.99 a pound, and all fresh sausage is on sale, $2.99 a pound for bulk, $3.99 for links. In fish, previously frozen Alaskan cod fillets are $6.99 a pound, previously frozen five ounce lobster tails are $5.99 each, and previously frozen Alaskan sockeye salmon fillets are $7.99 a pound.

In organic produce at Sprouts, Braeburn or Gala apples and acorn, butternut or spaghetti squash are all 98 cents a pound, russet potatoes are just 68 cents a pound, five pound bags of carrots are $2.98 each, pints of grape tomatoes are $2.50 each, and four pound bags of Valencia oranges are $2.50 each. I don't buy much conventional produce, but asparagus at $1.98 a pound and whole pineapples just 98 cents each are looking good to me. Elsewhere in the store, bulk coffee looks good at $7.99 a pound, Green Mountain Creamery Greek yogurts (my new fave with so many flavors that are just 110 calories, much lower than most) are $1 each, all Spice Hunter spices are half off, and Near East boxes of pilaf, couscous and the like are all 30% off.

Whole Foods has a new sale through December 31st, but as of 6:15 this morning, the flyer pdf the Pearl Street store has posted is still the old one that ended yesterday. I'll do the best I can off their alternate presentation of features in boxes, which is harder to work with. Through the 31st, American Homestead spiral-sliced hams are $4.99 a pound, $2 off, and a few days ago, the guy in the Tasty Town booth was giving away coupons for $5 off the total, probably still has them. Their very good fresh Icelandic cod is $12.99 a pound, $2 off, domestic jumbo raw shrimp are $15.99 a pound, $2 off, and fans of king salmon fillets might shell out $17.99 a pound, also $2 off. Organic baby broccoli looks good at $2 a bunch, and organic pink lady apples are $1.98 a pound. Parmigiano Reggiano is $3 off at $17.99 a pound, "build your own" entertaining platters in the bulk section are $2 off at $7.99 a pound (now that's an idea!), and my favorite Imagine chicken broths are $2.50 a box.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Feast Of The Seven Fishes

The Feast of the Seven Fishes is a lovely Italian tradition for Christmas Eve that I've been getting into ever since having it at I Trulli in New York on Christmas Eve at least two, maybe three years ago. (Leave it to the Italians to turn the deprivation of a meatless "fast" into a sumptuous fish feast.) As a simple home cook, I find it easiest to get most of my numbers from a fish chowder - the two fish often involved, like cod or halibut and scallops, can easily be supplemented with others like shrimp and clams, getting the fish total to four pretty quickly. Starting off with a smoked salmon dip with veggies and crackers easily gets us to five, but incorporating the remaining two can get trickier. Last year I put a bit of cooked crab meat from Whole Foods on top of the salad that went along with the fish chowder to get to six, but I don't remember what I did for the seventh. Guess it's time to start planning. And if you are more ambitious or want to read a bit of the history of the Feast, check out Epicurious' post on Mario Batali's Feast of the Seven Fishes.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Christmas Menu Ideas

Since UPS informed me this afternoon that it's already too late to have delivery by Christmas guaranteed via ground shipping, it must be time to start thinking about Christmas menus, so here are a few guides to help you out: Christmas Unwrapped from Epicurious, Celebrate the Holidays from Cooking Light, and Christmas Recipes from Food and Wine magazine.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Hanukkah Menu Ideas

As the holiday season advances oh so rapidly (at least today's weather is more in sync with the season), Hanukkah is nearly upon us. If you are looking for some festive food ideas, check out Hanukkah from Epicurious and Hanukkah Recipes, a humble title for an expansive set of resources from the ever-authoritative New York Times.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Seasonal Fun At Lucky's

The Lucky's Market in Boulder will host a kid's holiday cookie decorating event today from 3 to 5 pm, and I'm pretty sure the Lucky's in Longmont is doing a holiday tasting from 1 to 3 today. Also, the Boulder Lucky's will be doing game day party prep tomorrow from noon to 3 as part of their "sampling Sundays."

Friday, December 12, 2014

Final Weekend Till Spring For Cure Farm Store

This weekend will be the final one for my favorite Cure Organic Farm farm store at 75th and Valmont until they reopen for the new season next year. Despite crazy temperatures in the 60s in Boulder, it's sounding like it's time to hunker down for winter, and maybe Sunday's snow will put us more in the mood for that. Here's what Cure says:

The farm store is open through this Sunday and then closed until next spring. We're going out with a bang. We've got so much meat in the store, we had to bring in a second freezer! Tons of Berkshire pork available, as well as lamb. Deals on veggies and lots of gift items as well. We're open 11-6 today and Friday. 10-4 this weekend.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Weekend Sales At Whole Foods

Our local Whole Foods stores will offer us a quartet of special sales for tomorrow through Sunday only. First of all, 'tis the season for indulgence, and more than 10 varieties of nog will be on sale. The post says to see the store for details, and I guess since some probably are egg-free, we're no longer calling it eggnog. Also, all toys by Melissa and Doug will be 30% off, Festivus chai will be half off at $2.50 each, and lobster tails will be $1.99 off at two for $20. Size isn't specified on the lobster tails, but I'm thinking it's probably the larger size, as the smaller ones usually go on sale for around $7.99 each.

Heads Up Re Vitamin Cottage Sale

Just a heads up that the current long-running sale at Vitamin Cottage will end this Saturday, the 13th. There were all kinds of good things in this one (you can read my initial post about it here), but remember that stocks do tend to run low at the end of a sale, and there are no rainchecks.