Happy National Lasagna Day!
Today is National Lasagna Day and we are cheesin’ with excitement! In honor of such a special day, we decided to take a deeper look into the origin story of this delicious day. How did lasagna come about and where was it first created? Well, you’ve come to the right place to find out!
Like many of mankind’s finest creations, the origins of Lasagna can be traced back to Ancient Greece. The name lasagna, is derived from the Greek word laganon, the first known form of pasta. Laganon was nowhere near a traditional lasagna, but its name comes from its layers of pasta and sauce, similar to how lasagna is prepared today.
Modern day lasagna dates back to the Middle Ages, where it was first made in Naples, Italy. The original recipe was layered with sausage, meatballs, hard-boiled eggs, ricotta and mozzarella cheese, and sauced with Neapolitan Ragu, a meat sauce born in the city. The first recorded recipe could be found in one of the world’s oldest medieval cookbooks, the 14th-century “The Book of Cookery,” showcasing a fermented dough flattened into a thin sheet, boiled, and sprinkled with cheese and spices, and eaten with a small-pointed stick.
Other variations of lasagna were created around Italy, and the varying concepts were brought to America by Italian Immigrants. For example, Lasagna el forno is credited to the region of Emilia-Romagna, layered with a thicker ragu, made from carrots, onions, finely ground pork and beef, butter, and tomatoes. The recipe also features Bechamel, also known as white sauce, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. It’s the first lasagna dish to be traditionally green, due to the mixing of spinach and other vegetables in its dough.
Traditionally, lasagna is a dish of much variety. But no matter how you prepare it you can’t go wrong with this Italian classic. Stop by your local Price Chopper and Market 32 for all of your lasagna essentials today, and enjoy a tasty family meal for dinner tonight!
Ellie Wilson, MS, RDN Senior NutritionistApples are amazing – sweet, tart, crunchy and crave-worthy! This is apple season, and we have the benefit of enjoying local apples and apple cider, especially the super crunchy, super juicy Snapdragon® born and raised in New York! Sweet and spicy, with hints of vanilla, it is a variety that has the bonus of being the product of a cross with the super popular Honey Crisp – YUM! Fun fact – New York ranks second in the U.S. for apple production, with more than 1 billion pounds grown each year! Apples are an important part of New York agriculture: Learn more at applesfromny.com. Apples bring a lot of health benefits to your family – high in soluble and insoluble fiber, they support weight loss, heart and digestive health. Science is uncovering more about their antioxidant powers, too – quercetin, catechin and chlorogenic acid add to the health properties of apples. Check out all of the great varieties we have at your local store, and don’t forget to try the Washington State star, the Piñata from Stemilt! This is a cross of 3 heirloom varieties that resulted in a classic crunchy, juicy apple, with a surprisingly tropical flavor twist! Great in salads, sandwiches, baking and snacking – learn more and find delicious recipes at https://www.stemilt.com/fruits/apples/pinata-apples/. #eatmoreapples! Our December home.grown. Brewer of the Month: Stony Creek 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’re embarking on a new home.grown. adventure: to bring you fresh craft beer stories each month from our Northeast region; the best region in the United State if you ask us! Next up to the plate: Stony Creek Brewery! The pride of Branford, CT, Stony Creek Brewery was rebranded by co-founder Ed Crowley in 2015. Prior to the rebranding, Stony Creek was a small-scale contract-produced craft brand, mainly known for their IPAs named after Connecticut’s two area codes, 203 and 860. Stony Creek became much bigger after their rebrand, which launched in February 2015, and they opened up their first brewery right along the Branford River. The brewery’s 30,000 square foot size makes it the second largest brewing facility and taproom in the state of Connecticut. One of its unique features is a 2,500 square foot tasting room with 23-ounce glass mugs hanging on the wall behind the bar as part of the brewery’s Mug Club. The “Mug Club” is a way of giving back to devoted customers by giving them “their own little piece of the creek,” according to Ed Crowley Jr! We’re proud to team up with the great people over at Stony Creek and we look forward to showcasing their crafty creations, today and in the future. Interested in trying some Stony Creek brews? Check out our in-store tasting schedule below to sample Stony Creek’s craft beer, take home some brewery swag and more. Saturday 12/1, 12pm – 3pm at our Bethlehem Price Chopper Friday 12/7, 5pm – 8pm at our Wilton Market 32 Friday 12/21, 5pm – 8pm at our Clifton Shopper’s World Market 32 Saturday 12/22, 12pm – 3pm at our Malta Price Chopper Saturday 12/29, 12 pm – 3pm at our Market Bistro (Latham) Interested in visiting the brewery? Make the most of everything Stony Creek Brewery has to offer! Visit stonycreekbeer.com for taproom hours and menu, get info on brewery tours and more. Brewery & Taproom Address: 5 Indian Neck Avenue, Branford, CT 06405
Activate Wellness: November is National Diabetes Month
Ellie Wilson, MS, RDN Senior NutritionistDiabetes is a rising concern for many – almost 10% of Americans have diabetes, and another 30% are at risk. The good news is, eating well to prevent or manage diabetes is the same for everyone. Some quick tips:
- Make half your plate veggies and fruit for most meals, and you have taken a giant step in the right direction. Fresh, frozen and canned fruits and veggies can all be part of your solution.
- Watch quantities on starchy foods – a small serving of potatoes is fine, whole grain sides like rice and quinoa in smaller servings, and whole grain breads are all okay.
- Lean proteins in moderate portions, including seafood twice per week, dairy, beans and legumes, lean chicken, pork or beef – all fit.
- Good fats, like olive oil, avocados and olives, are important to ensuring food tastes good and enhances absorption of key nutrients.
- Even dessert – small servings, or low/no calorie treats, are a good way to make delicious and carb-conscious choices.
- Milk or water round out your meals and snacks, and offer vital nutrients and hydration.
- Our Pharmacy team is also a wonderful resource and has a free medication and supplies program. https://www.pricechopper.com/pharmacy#/
The Rundown on Hardy MumsFall 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, and 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!