The Many Ways of Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is best known for its role as a sweet finishing touch to pancakes and waffles. However, its abilities go far beyond the breakfast table. Maple farmers use special drills to tap into the trees to obtain the sap that’s boiled down to produce the pure maple syrup we know and love. Here in the Northeast, maple sugaring season occurs as winter ends and spring begins. We’re proud to partner with a variety of local maple farmers and producers in our region to bring you the season’s best. You can add pure maple syrup from our local partners to your culinary tool belt and use them in breakfast recipes, desserts and beyond!

Swap Syrup for Sugar

Give your favorite treats complex, caramelly tastes by using maple syrup in place of sugar in baked goods such as cookies, cakes, breads and muffins. Replace 1 cup of granulated sugar with ¾ cup of maple syrup. For every cup of liquid sweetener, reduce added liquids in the recipe by about 3 to 4 tablespoons. Add about 1 tablespoon of flour for every ¼ cup of maple syrup if there’s no liquid called for in the recipe. When swapping these ingredients, ensure your syrup is at room temperature, as cold syrup can cause other ingredients to clump.

Savory Syrup

Maple syrup adds complexity and subtle sweetness to numerous savory dishes. Use it to flavor proteins like chicken, pork, or salmon, or pair it with bacon for a mouthwatering, sweet and smoky treat. Try whisking it into salad dressings to give your greens hints of caramelization or bring out the natural sweetness of veggies by drizzling maple syrup over tomatoes, squash, potatoes and mushrooms.

Drinks & Desserts

Maple syrup’s versatility extends from the plate to the glass! Add a dash to your morning coffee or tea, or use it to spice up a classic old fashioned or whiskey sour cocktail. It also makes a drool-worthy addition to these Maple Caramel Bacon Brownies, used as a sweetener for whipped cream or drizzled over scones, ice cream, pies and more.

Looking for more ways to use maple syrup in your everyday cooking? Click here! From all of us at Price Chopper & Market 32, happy maple sugaring season!

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It’s maple sugaring season in the Northeast, and we’re all amped up for local maple.

Today’s lesson: Maple Syrup Beyond the Stack of Pancakes!

Each winter as the weather starts to warm up, maple trees in our region produce sweet sap that contains a small amount of sugar and a large amount of water. By boiling off the water from sap, a 100% pure sugar substance is created: maple syrup. The almighty nectar of the maple tree!

We live in one of the only regions in the world with the ideal climate for maple agriculture, and we’re proud to partner with a wide variety of local maple farmers and producers here in the Northeast, who are currently hard at work in the midst of this year’s maple sugaring season.

A lot of folks love pouring maple syrup on their pancakes and waffles, which is certainly delicious, but maple has so much more to offer. Maple syrup is a versatile ingredient and can be used in baked goods, savory dinner entrées and more!

Bring maple syrup to life beyond your pancakes by…

Stirring it into your morning (or afternoon, or evening) coffee: Maple syrup is a 100% pure and natural sweetener: it’ll add a delicious flavor to your cup of coffee.

Pouring it over ice cream: Take a bowl of your favorite ice cream (we like vanilla the best) and drizzle some maple syrup over it, with a blanket of whipped cream: this is what dreams are made of. Our New Hampshire pals at Ben’s Sugar Shack are big fans of this treat.

Making maple garlic salmon: Mix maple syrup with minced garlic and a pinch of salt and glaze salmon with it. It’s a game changer.

Making maple mustard: Chances are you’ve had honey mustard more than once in your life. Maple mustard is a similar (but incredible) spin on the classic yellow condiment. Just whisk a bit of maple syrup into some Dijon mustard and you’ve got yourself a new favorite salad dressing, sandwich spread and more. Sweet.

Making salted maple pie: This one takes a little effort, but the results will have you shedding tears of joy. Vermont’s famous Butternut Mountain Farm offers this awesome recipe that’ll satisfy your sweet tooth and your savory tooth.

There you have it: maple syrup doesn’t have to live exclusively in breakfast land. Looking for more maple-spiration? Check out our home.grown. maple Pinterest board for a collection of recipes from our local maple partners!

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Potatoes: We Love You

Potatoes are one of our favorite things to eat and also one of our favorite crops to follow. They’re famously grown in New York’s Black Dirt Region, which is home to some of the most fertile soil in the world. Our Market 32 Red Potatoes and other home.grown. vegetables reap the benefits of this land! We’re lucky to have this geological treasure right in our Warwick, NY backyard. For more on that topic, check out our story on the Black Dirt Region here.

Our real story: February is National Potato Lovers Month and we’re putting spuds in the spotlight. One of the most versatile foods found in a supermarket, there are endless ways to prepare potatoes.

We reached into our large 50-pound bag and pulled out some of our favorite recipes:

  1. Rosemary-Garlic Hasselback Potatoes: Hasselback potatoes are quite the stylish side dish. Crispy on the edges and creamy on the inside, they include a little bit of everything you love all in one. Top with rosemary and garlic and you have a perfect companion for your main dish.
  2. Herb-Roasted Fingerling Potatoes: Fingerling Potatoes are tiny and unassuming, but they pack a burst of flavor that you may not expect. Due to their smaller, thin shape they cook quickly and are easy to prepare.
  3. Loaded Scalloped Sweet Potatoes: Potatoes and cheese have been a beautiful couple in cooking forever. Add bacon to the mix and you have a dreamy combination of satisfying flavor, especially when it comes with sweet potatoes.
  4. Carrot & Kale Latkes with Orange-Ginger Sour Cream: This Carrot & Kale version is an upgraded take on light, crispy latkes. The Orange-Ginger Sour Cream matches this recipe perfectly and brings the whole plate together for a satisfying bite.
  5. Mashed Potato, Cheddar & Leek Casserole: There are few better ways to enhance mashed potatoes than with cheddar cheese and bacon. Bring all of these into casserole and you’ll be blown away by the comfort food feels. This is a perfect survival dish for the rest of the February cold!
  6. Farmer’s Market Hash with Poached Eggs: One of our favorite morning meals is hash and eggs. This take, best made with home.grown. red potatoes and our PICS large eggs, really hits the spot!
  7. Roasted Garlic Parmesan Dip: This recipe itself doesn’t involve potatoes, but grab a bag of PICS Kettle Chips and dip away. You have an excellent party appetizer or something for when you’re just in need of a tasty snack. How about dipping some fries in this puppy?

The versatility of a potato is what makes them such a valuable food. With so many styles and preparation methods available at your fingertips, it’s impossible to not love spuds. Here we covered a starchy sample of awesome recipes, but we’ve barely even scratched the surface of all that potato potential! Stop by your local store or shop online to grab potatoes and get started on one of these recipes.

Happy Potato Month from your pals at Price Chopper & Market 32!

Location, Location…Location? The home.grown. Story of Philadelphia Cream Cheese

We provide a wide variety of home.grown. products to our customers, but did you know that one of America’s favorite cream cheeses is one these products? Philadelphia Cream Cheese is actually the product of small town Chester, NY, not Philly. So why is this tasty spread labeled Philadelphia when its roots are in NY? This is the tale of Philadelphia Cream Cheese.

As you can imagine there are a lot of myths of how Philadelphia Cream Cheese got its name. Tales such as “it originated in Philly then was stolen and brought to Upstate New York,” or “it’s from Philadelphia, NY” float around, but are untrue. According to the research done by world-renowned cream cheese expert Rabbi Jeffrey Marx, the name “Philadelphia Cream Cheese” is nothing more than a clever marketing scheme.

In the 1880s, Philadelphia was the country’s goldmine for all things dairy, producing the highest quality products due to its fertile land. At this time, many American dairy farms were producing a fresher, un-aged version of what in Europe is known as Neufchatel, a soft, crumby, mold-ripened cheese. Philadelphia was a hotbed for cheeses of this kind and had earned itself quite the reputation.

Meanwhile, in Chester, NY, dairyman William Lawrence was boosting the cream content in his cheese recipe, creating something new simply called, “cream cheese.” Lawrence was doing well, selling enough of his recipe to run a solid business, until he met New York cheese broker Alvah Reynolds. Reynolds pitched the idea of adding Philadelphia to the name of the recipe for better advertisement. Lawrence was intrigued, and “Philadelphia Cream Cheese” was born. Lawrence’s product became a booming success and eventually turned into the product that we love today.

Fast forward to the present day and cream cheese is still celebrated in neighborhoods in our region. In Lowville, NY, just a few miles from our Carthage Price Chopper, they host an annual Cream Cheese Festival featuring recipe contests, games, music, and more. Every year the event is a hit!

Craving cream cheese? Now that you know its rich, home.grown. history…it’s time to enjoy some! Find it at your local store or on our website, and check out our recipe picks below for some treats that put cream cheese in the spotlight!

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Our January home.grown. Brewer of the Month: Paradox Brewery

We love all things local, and one of our favorite sectors of local food is local beer. There are so many different brews, flavors, and styles, and so many stories to tell! That’s why we’ve embarked on an exciting home.grown. adventure: to bring you fresh craft beer stories each month from our Northeast region. Our region is home to some of the best craft breweries in the world, and we’re telling their stories to our craft beer fanatics here on our blog.

Up next: Paradox Brewery!

This month we’re back for another round at Paradox Brewery. Last February we introduced some of our favorite Paradox brews here on our blog, this month we return to talk about their awesome new facility!  

Paul and Joan Mrocka opened Paradox Brewery six years ago, now after years of hard work they have a new brewery in North Hudson, just a few miles north of the old Schroon Lake location. The new location will allow Paradox to quadruple its output, and move everything on site. Inside, the brewery will be full of modern, highly efficient equipment, while a wraparound deck on the outside will provide guests with a gorgeous view of the mountains. Paradox even has a plan for food trucks to be a part of the atmosphere in the future. Yum!

Stop in to the new Paradox location, where you can enjoy the same quality brews in a new and improved environment. Paradox Pilsner is still a Paradox fan favorite as a light, crisp and refreshing drink. While, Beaver Bite IPA remains a top seller, alongside its juicy, double IPA sibling Beaver Overbite.

Here’s to another year of tasty craft beer!

Interested in trying some Paradox brews?

Check out our in-store tasting schedule below to sample Paradox’s craft beer, take home some custom home.grown. coasters and more.

Saturday, 1/4: 11am-2pm at our Glen Street Price Chopper

Saturday, 1/11: 11am-2pm at our Wilton Market 32 Growler Station

Saturday, 1/18: 11am-2pm at our Clifton Shoppers World Market 32 Growler Station

Saturday, 1/25: 11am-2pm at our Plattsburgh Market 32

Interested in visiting the brewery?

Visit for more info!

Hot sauce junkies, heat connoisseurs and spiciness fanatics: We’re comin’ in hot with our next monthly feature!

Each month we’re bringing you fresh stories on a different sauce brand, sharing some flavor insights, stories behind the brands and more. Travel with us on an adventure consisting of varying degrees of heat each month!

September’s Feature: PICS Hot Sauce!

Sometimes it’s nice to celebrate yourself. That’s why this month’s feature is our very own PICS Hot Sauce. Made with red cayenne peppers, it packs just the right punch and compliments a wide variety of foods. Try it folded into your scrambled eggs, spice up your pulled pork, or add a kick to any of your personal favorite hot sauce incorporated meals.

Our PICS brand was created to meet the highest standards in quality and value. We know quality matters to you and your family, especially when it comes to food, and these various handpicked options are guaranteed to meet those standards. We appreciate our loyal customers, and it’s very rewarding to provide them with an affordable line they can trust. Plus, we are happy knowing we are putting delicious and nutritious options on your table.

Turn up the heat with PICS this month, and tune in next month for our October Hot Sauce of the Month!

Homegrown sweet corn is one of our specialties and just one example of how we celebrate the flavors of the Northeast. We team up with a variety of Northeast farms to choose seed varieties that produce the most tender, flavorful corn you’ll find anywhere. Here are some great ways to make the most of one of our region’s best agricultural products!

  1. Make Fritters

In addition to eating corn right off the cob, try spicing it up with a recipe from our friends at Reeves Farm in Baldwinsville, NY –  Reeves Family Corn Fritters  

  1. Spice it Up

Try this Spicy Maple Mayo from our friends at Butternut Mountain Farm in Morristown, VT. Simply mix 1 cup mayonnaise, ¼ cup pre maple syrup, ½ juice from a fresh lime, and 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder together for a tangy twist. Spicy Maple Mayo is one of our favorite additions to corn on the cob. Check out Butternut Mountain Farm’s website for more info – Spicy Maple Mayo.

  1. Eat it Fresh off the Cob

Sweet corn is even sweeter when eaten fresh off the cob. Many of our local farmer friends, like the Eckhardt Family in Stephentown, NY, enjoy sweet corn raw as much as they enjoy it cooked. It’s a simple yet very tasty option to try this season!

   4. Make Mexican Street Corn Salad

Looking for a fun twist on your corn this summer? Add this recipe for Grilled Mexican Corn Street Salad – Grilled Mexican Street Corn Salad  to your repertoire. A refreshing combination of flavors sure to satisfy your summer palate!

     5. Kick it up with Parmesan Spread

Fire up the grill for this one! This recipe for Grilled Corn with Parmesan Spread & Basil – Grilled Corn with Parmesan Spread & Basil makes a perfect side dish for any summertime barbeque.  Be prepared as your guests will be calling for more!

Here in the Northeast sweet corn is a summertime staple. Nothing says summer like that first bite into fresh, crisp corn on the cob. The classics are great, but we love to mix it up, and these are five great ways to do just that. Maybe you’ll even discover a new favorite! Whichever way you choose to enjoy your local corn this growing season, make sure to stop by your local Price Chopper or Market 32 for all of your summertime goods!

The Rundown on Hardy Mums

FBheader Fall is officially in full swing and mums is the word! Hardy mums that is. Unlike most flowers, mums are ideal for fall. They bring a classic colorfulness and a fitting liveliness perfect for the season. Known by their botanical name, Chrysanthemums, these flowers are built to withstand winter’s toughest temperatures. Mums are one of our favorite items to partner with local growers for sourcing – summer is great but we get excited when cooler weather approaches! The best time to plant mums is actually in the spring: If you look hard enough you should be able to find variations of sizes and colors early. They might not look like anything to rave about then, but by the time fall comes you’ll be thankful for your early s tart. Planting them in the spring also increases hardiness and prepares the mums for the coldest temperatures, allowing them to overwinter. A full day of sun is preferred for mums to have a good bloom, but they can get by with at least half a day’s worth of sun. Hardy mums are commonly seen in many colors such as sunny yellows, pinks, mauves, Chrysanthemums in Autumnand orange-reds. The orange and red variations are the most fitting for the autumn season! Hardy mums may not be as bright as spring flowers, but they’re presence is a very appealing addition to an otherwise fading fall garden. Some hardy mums even change colors over time, “Will’s Wonderful” mums start bright red in the summer, with a touch of yellow in the center. Then, as they age, the yellow slowly spreads across the petals, eventually taking over the flower leaving only tips of red. Our Northeast climate provides an ideal agricultural canvas for planting and growing fall mums. We’re proud to have been partnering with Casertano’s Greenhouses in Cheshire, CT and Kurt Weiss Greenhouses in Moriches, NY for over a decade, allowing us to source our Northeast-grown mums each year! Hardy mums make a great decorative piece for fall: Get yours at your local Price Chopper or Market 32 before it’s too late! From the North Country to ABC’s Shark Tank: An Interview with Parker’s Maple ParkersHeaderPic.png We’re proud to support farmers and producers in the Northeast throughout the whole year: When it’s made or grown here, we get it here! We were recently able to speak with Alee Parker at Parker’s Maple in Canton, NY. She was kind enough to answer some of our questions about the company and its delicious maple products! PC: What is your process for making maple syrup? AP: When making maple syrup, our process is still the same as it was originally when we first began. We go out, tap the trees, and then when the sap is collected and ready we bring it to the production facility where we have osmosis machines and evaporators. PC: When is maple season and how long does it typically last? parkerssyrup1AP: The best time of year is when it is freezing temperatures at night, and then around 40 degrees and sunny during the day. This occurs around the spring; typically March is prime maple time. PC: Is tapping the trees harmful to the tree? AP: We haven’t seen any evidence of it hurting the tree. You do have to be careful that you don’t drill within three inches of where you drilled the year before. We, like all maple farmers, do take special precautionary measures to be cognizant and mindful of where we are drilling. As far as evidence of it hurting the trees, we haven’t seen any, our trees continue to grow bigger and bigger every year! PC: Do you have any products that would be considered organic? AP: Yes, our maple cotton candy! Our cotton candy is certified organic. PC: Do you add anything to your maple syrup? AP: Our syrup is 100% pure, real maple syrup. Our maple butter is 100% maple syrup with a small preservative added. PC: What does Parker’s Maple do to stand out? AP: We’re big on innovation, with a goal of “waking up” the sometimes sleeping maple category. We are innovating by creating products like our maple butter, and rebranding it to fit into the current nut butter craze. Our maple cotton candy is also super unique. ParkerMapleHGInnovation is a huge part of what we do, and our mission is to educate people about the health benefits of maple syrup as opposed to granulated sugar, brown sugar, and honey. Plus, Josh has a unique story, starting the company with his dad at a very young age, so we like to talk about our story. PC: What’s your favorite part about working on a maple farm? AP: The excitement we get from customers and fans! People show up on any given day and we always get calls from people raving about our stuff. It helps all of our employees become excited about what we have going on. PC: You guys made a pitch on Shark Tank last year. What was it like presenting your brand on national television? AP: When Josh went on Shark Tank it was nerve-wracking! I think I was more nervous than he was. But he did a great job, and the national exposure we received from it was incredible. The number of orders that came in after the show aired were beyond anything we could have expected. It took us a month to fulfill all of the orders. It was amazing to see our company jump from being a local food company to a national brand overnight. PC: What’s your favorite thing about Price Chopper? AP: The people! The employees at our local Canton NY store are always so friendly and helpful. Plus, Price Chopper holds value to supporting local farmers and producers like us, which we’re very thankful for.   Props to Alee Parker for taking the time to chat with us! We pride ourselves on being able to offer local products in our stores, and that would not be possible without folks like Parker’s Maple. We’ll be sampling their syrup in the stores below – if you’re in the area stop by for a home.grown. taste!   Western Lights Syracuse Price Chopper, 11/10 12:30-6:30pm East Greenbush Market 32, 11/10 12:30-6:30pm Genesee Street Utica Price Chopper, 11/11 10am-4pm Brunswick Market 32, 11/11 10am-4pm Glenville Market 32, 11/11 10am-4pm Hudson Valley Plaza Market 32, 11/11 10am-4pm Clay Price Chopper, 11/11 10am-4pm Cicero Price Chopper, 11/11 10am-4pm Clifton Park Plaza Market 32, 11/11 10am-4pm Clifton Shoppers World Market 32, 11/12 10am-4pm The home.grown. Rundown on Some Underdog Winter Squashes winter squash header Now that the weather seems like it’s finally cooling off for good: We offer a variety of tasty, local winter squashes that are perfect for your favorite cold weather meals! November is prime time for winter squashes, and we’re proud to source our hard squashes from farmers here in the Northeast, like Torrey Farms in Elba, NY, Plainville Farm in Hadley, MA, and Mazza Farms in Essex, VT. While many Northeast folks stick with classics like butternut and acorn for cooking and baking, there are a variety of other winter squashes out there that have just as much flavor: we’re here to shed some light on some of those lesser-known winter squashes. Some decorators use the underdog vegetables below on their front porches and fireplace mantles, but they’re actually delicious relatives to favorites like acorn and butternut. Check out the info below!   Sweet Dumpling Squash (pictured above) is a smaller winter squash averaging 4 inches in diameter and weighing less than one pound. Its shape is similar to that of an acorn squash, with an ivory colored skin and green, yellow, or orange stripes running vertically down the sides. Sweet Dumplings are extra tasty when cut in half, baked and drizzled with home.grown. maple syrup. Also, with their bowl-like shape they’re perfect for stuffing with meat, cheeses, and vegetables.  
Raw Organic Delicata Squash

Raw Organic Delicata Squash Ready to Cook With

Delicata Squash is a smaller, underrated squash perfect for the winter. Being smaller than most other squash varieties, they are easy to cut and prepare. They have a sweetness to them that makes them very tasty, you don’t have to add anything. Also, unlike other types of squash, Delicata has a tender, tasty skin perfect for eating, and very convenient for preparing. You can eat them like fries, only they’re a much healthier alternative. In the words of Lloyd Zimmerman of Coxsackie’s Black Horse Farms, “they’re truly underrated!”  
Butter Kin squash on display

Butter Kin fall squash at the farmers market

Butterkin Squash is a cross between a pie pumpkin and a butternut squash. They have a dark orange interior that is deliciously sweet and smooth in texture. Butterkins can be used to substitute in any dish that calls for butternut squash or cooking pumpkins. For the best preparation, cut the butterkin in half, place face down onto a foil lined baking sheet. Bake in 400F oven until soft. Remove the seeds and discard. Carefully scrape out the softened squash from the cavity and enjoy!  
Small blue hubbard squash at the market

Small blue hubbard squash at the farmers market

Baby Blue Hubbard Squash was developed in 1953 here in the Northeast by the University of New Hampshire. They have a sweet, yellowish flesh. Luckily, Baby Hubbard Squash is delicious to eat and simple to prepare. Try it roasted, cut into small pieces and tossed with rosemary, olive oil, salt, and pepper. It’s fantastic when served with roasted meats such as turkey, pork, or chicken.       One of the best perks of all winter squashes is the health benefits they provide. They’re a great source of vitamin A and C, potassium, and B vitamins and minerals, including copper and manganese. They’re very versatile and nutritious! No matter which type of squash you select, you can be confident that you’re making a healthy decision. They bring beautiful color and nutrition to your fall harvest meal! These underdog squashes may be lesser known, but they’re always a tasty addition to any cold weather meal. Between the different varieties there is plenty of selection, and numerous health benefits. This year, take a chance on one of these vegetables: you might just find a new favorite!