Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Fresh From The Fields This Week

My Red Wagon Organic Farm CSA pickup is always a good indicator of produce you can expect to find at the Boulder Farmers' Market as well (plus the Farmers' Market has non-Boulder options like Palisade peaches), and this week's CSA is getting very interesting as we advance through summer. Last time I took up the challenge and selected the fava bean option, which much to my surprise turned out spectacularly well. This week, Red Wagon is really throwing down the gauntlet to me by offering kohlrabi, which I've never tried and they also spell kind of weirdly, but given the success of the fava beans, I'll continue working into unfamiliar territory. Evidently the peeled bulb is even good raw, which sounds like the start of an interesting salad, and the greens can be treated like any other greens. That will present another challenge, as the pickup will also include beets, the greens of which I love to cook, so that will be lots of highly perishable greens to deal with quickly. Here's this week's ever-interesting list from Red Wagon, complete with a pretty squash blossom picture (unfortunately I won't be able to get both the blossoms and the kohlrabi, since that's a choice between them):
Regular ShareSquash Blossoms

-Beets
-Fresh Garlic
-Grilling Onions
-Green Beans
-Choice: Kale OR Collards OR Chard
-Choice: Zucchini OR Cucumber OR Parsley
-Choice: Kholrabi OR Fennel OR Squash Blossoms OR Potatoes

Large Share Additions

-Extra Fresh Garlic
-Extra Choice: Zucchini OR Cucumber OR Parsley
-Extra Choice: Kholrabi OR Fennel OR Squash Blossoms OR Potatoes

Fruit Share

-Cherries

Monday, July 21, 2014

New Deals At Vitamin Cottage

We have a new sale at our Boulder Vitamin Cottage lasting all the way through August 9th, and there are some attractive deals to be had. Six ounce packages of organic blueberries are $2.69 each, a very nice price for a prolonged period of time for our organic blueberry fans (and a blueberry is something I'd never eat in conventional). Half pound bags of organic chia seeds are $3.99 each, very nice for organic ones of this current cult superfood. Stonyfield organic nonfat Greek yogurts are $1.15 for the individual serving size or $3.19 for 16 ounces, and for my friends avoiding gluten and/or dairy, Amy's gluten free rice mac & cheese or dairy free "cheeze" are $2.69 a box, while the original mac & cheese is even lower at $2.39. Late July multigrain chips, a favorite in this house with hummus, are $1.99 a bag, Crunchmaster gluten-free multi-seed crackers, even more beloved, are fantastic at $2.29 a bag, the big 25 ounce size of Westbrae organic canned beans is $1.99 each, as is the big 28 ounce size of Muir Glen organic canned tomatoes. And of course being Vitamin Cottage, there are plenty of specials on supplements.

Oh, Please Spare Me

I've long extolled the virtues of the prosciutto ends at the Pearl Street Whole Foods store for use in cooking when dicing the meat anyway, since the ends were selling at nearly half the price of the freshly sliced prosciutto at the deli.  Not finding any of the ends yesterday, I asked the deli staff, who directed me instead to "prosciutto crisps," cooked little slices which they said is what they are turning the ends into now.  With the freshly sliced prosciutto selling in the $25 a pound range and the ends nearly half that, these "crisps" are $35 a pound!  Okay, since I like accuracy, a penny less than that at $34.99 a pound.  Like I am going to choose that product to dice up into a chowder!  Sheesh.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Lucky's Swordfish Is Domestic!

At least at the Longmont store, and I would imagine that would mean the same for the Boulder one, although the two stores do tend to differ on meats, so possibly fish as well.  I was thrilled to find that the swordfish on sale at the Longmont store for $6.99 a pound through Wednesday, while previously frozen, is in fact from the USA.  That significantly beats Whole Foods' price for frozen Canadian swordfish at $10.99 a pound.  Swordfish is going on the grill tonight as we try to beat the heat, and I might just pick up another one on the last day of the sale on Wednesday.  Munson's corn on the side with everything this week!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Munson's Is Open!

Today is opening day for Munson Farms' farm stand at 75th and Valmont, marking the start of the fresh local sweet corn from my favorite place on earth. I see a corn chowder coming up shortly in our plans, plus ears of corn to go on the side of tomorrow night's swordfish from Lucky's Market. They also have Palisade peaches and a whole lot of other things to get us through the sweltering heat we're looking at for the rest of the week.

Farmers' Market Today

Just a reminder that today is the Boulder Farmers' Market downtown from 8 to 2, and also out at the fairgrounds in Longmont for slightly shorter hours. If you make it to the Longmont one early enough, you might be lucky to catch a librarian from the Longmont Public Library with great ideas to captivate your mind as you peruse the beautiful produce around you.

Friday, July 18, 2014

More Grand Opening Sales At Alfalfa's

Alfalfa's continues to advertise grand opening sales in celebration of its new Louisville store, and the specials are good both there and at the original store in Boulder. Items looking interesting to me through July 22nd include their housemade green bean and potato salad for $2.99 a pound, $4 off, Canyon Bakehouse gluten-free bread $3.49 a loaf, $3 off, Daiya frozen vegan pizzas at two for $8 (I haven't tried them, but that's $11.98 off on two 16 ounce Margherita or roasted vegetable pizzas), select Blue Diamond Nut Thins $1.50 a box, which is an astonishing price on the artisan variety they picture, and organic red seedless grapes $1.99 a pound.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Weekend Sales At Whole Foods

Whole Foods is offering us five specials for tomorrow through Sunday, too many for me to copy in, so here's the link (they're the five sales at the top, and fans of Tom's toothpaste will be happy). I'm especially enthused about the mozzarella, and it's well timed to go with Whole Foods' current regular sale on organic heirloom tomatoes.

Munsons Opening Saturday?

Every year I live for the arrival of local Munson's corn, at which time they also open their farm stand at 75th and Valmont, creating a duo of farm stand heaven since Cure Organic Farm is just across the street to the south. Last time I was at the Boulder Farmers' Market, where Munsons always has a booth, I asked them how it was looking for the stand opening and was told that cool spring weather was delaying the corn crop and therefore delaying the stand. Now I see on their website that they hope to have the stand open by the 19th, which is Saturday. Oh, I hope! The first few days they offer it, the kernels on the corn are rather delicately small but succulent, then within just a few days, those kernels explode into a summer celebration.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

This Week's Hot Grocery Deals (IMHO)

We have new sales starting today at our Boulder Sprouts and Whole Foods stores. Something also should be going on at Vitamin Cottage that I need to check out, as their last long running sale ended last weekend. Here's what's looking good to me now.

At Sprouts through July23rd, fresh wild Alaskan sockeye salmon fillets have bumped up a dollar to a still very good $10.99 a pound ($9.99 at both Safeway and King Soopers with card, not worth a detour at all). Chicken breast tenders are okay at $2.99 a pound, while whole, split or cut up chickens are $1.59 a pound and marinated chicken kabobs are $3.99 a pound. Bone-in New York steaks are $7.99 a pound, and while we rarely buy burger, grass-fed organic ground beef sounds good at $4.99 a pound.

In organic produce at Sprouts, curly, Lacinato or red Russian kale are all just 98 cents a bunch, grape tomatoes are $2.50 a pint, baby carrots are $1.50 a one pound bag, celery is $1.50 a bunch, red, green or black grapes are all $2.50 a pound, black plums are just 98 cents a pound, and six ounces of blueberries or a pound of strawberries are $2.98 a container.  Elsewhere in the store, nothing is particularly grabbing me this week. There's a raw foods sale with select varieties 25% off, and the flax seed crackers in the picture do look good.

In Whole Foods' new sale through July 29th, organic heirloom tomatoes look good at $3.99 a pound (stay tuned for a post tomorrow for something to pair them with). Market made chicken kabobs or satays with black pepper sauce are $5.99 a pound, and fresh Norwegian salmon steaks are $11.99 a pound (that would be the good farmed type, but in this fresh wild season, I'm going with wild). Market made firehouse potato salad is $2 off at $3.99 a pound for a quick picnic helper, and their own yummy "everything" baguettes are $2 each.

But once again, it's Lucky's Market that's getting my attention, and once again, the prices on what's catching my eye are better in Longmont than in Boulder. Their yummy salmon burgers that are turning me into such a lazy cook are just $1.99 each in Longmont, $2.99 in Boulder (and $3.99 each for the sale one at Whole Foods). House-made swordfish kabobs are just $5.99 a pound in Longmont, and when I saw them yesterday there they were not only beautiful but also from the USA, a priority for my swordfish. The Lucky's in Boulder is offering tuna kabobs instead, at $6.99 a pound. Both stores also have previously frozen swordfish steaks (could those also be domestic???), $6.99 a pound in Longmont, $7.99 in Boulder. In an interesting comparison of the stores' differing approaches, both stores are offering boneless pork loin chops, with the ones in Longmont being "all natural" at $2.99 a pound, while the ones in Boulder are Beelers' fine ones with Lucky's "never ever" standards for $3.99 a pound. I don't promise to always find the time to add in Lucky's, but since the Longmont store is becoming my go-to place, I'll keep trying.