Price Chopper and Market 32 are Produce Proud, and kicking off July with beautiful options, and  AdvantEdge points for produce purchases. https://www.pricechopper.com/rewards/  Make half of your plate fruits and veggies at snacks and meals, and you will reap the benefits of eating well. Check out some of these easy and exciting ways to fire up your produce intake and power up delicious, nutritious meals!

Great grilling!

Check out the seasonal section of our stores for grill pans, metal and wooden skewers you can use to short cut grilling vegetables and fruit! If using wooden skewers, soak in water for at least 30 minutes to prevent burning. Choose your favorite cut fruit, like fresh mango or pineapple, oil the grill pan or the grill itself with some olive oil, then get going with some fun serving ideas. Thin vegetables like green beans, asparagus or scallions cook up in 4 minutes or less. Thicker cuts of vegetables may take a few more minutes to reach that warm but still crunchy-tender texture that goes so well with everything. Fruits should be watched carefully so the natural sugars don’t burn – marinate in a balsamic vinaigrette or add in something spicy for a wonderful topping, side or salsa!

Serving Savvy

Sassy Salsa – Grill sliced mango or fresh pineapple spears, (available already cut in the Produce fresh cut case), until warm and slightly softened. Dust with cayenne, top with sliced scallions and serve with grilled chicken or seafood.

Brussels Kabobs – Carefully rinse and trim the ends off of bagged, fresh Brussels sprouts, keeping the ends intact. If feeding a crowd, rinse a net bag of Market 32 Baby Red or Yellow Potatoes, too. Microwave the sprouts and potatoes for 4-5 minutes, until slightly soft. Allow vegetables to cool slightly, then thread with sweet onion quarters onto kabobs and cook on an oiled grill on medium heat until slightly charred and tender, 8-10 minutes, turning to brown evenly. Toss with lemon vinaigrette and serve with your favorite protein, like grilled flank steak.

Caesar Asparagus – Wash and trim fresh asparagus. Oil grill and cook on medium until tender, approximately 4-6 minutes, turning frequently. Top with a squeeze of fresh lemon and some shredded Parmesan cheese. Enjoy hot or cold!

Grilling greats know this food safety tip – wash all fresh produce, even if it will be peeled or cut up, before prepping.

Ellie Wilson, MS, RDN, Senior Nutritionist The American Heart Association, long known for their efforts to educate Americans about the best ways to enjoy great heart health, began a new tradition several years ago with National Eating Healthy Day. It always falls on the first Wednesday of November, and seeks to help people keep their heart in mind as the holidays begin. The theme this year is “Be Colorful”, to get us thinking about and enjoying more fruits and vegetables at all of our eating occasions. You can add more produce to your diet with these easy, quick tips: eggplant White bean dip with vegetables
  1. Power up breakfast with some dried fruit in oatmeal, like dried cherries and apricots.
  2. Make that morning snack a small apple and a light cheese stick – produce plus protein is perfect!
  3. Add some extra frozen or canned veggies to your lunchtime soup, or mix bagged, chopped salads with romaine lettuce for a quick power salad. Dress with balsamic vinegar and a drizzle of olive oil to keep the taste high and calories low.
  4. Hummus and cut veggies make a flavorful, plant-protein and fiber-rich afternoon snack.
  5. Double up on dinner vegetables – double servings of the same item, or mix and match fresh/ready-to-eat vegetables with your favorite cooked ones – with produce, more is always better!
Get your holiday season started with National Eating Healthy Day and give your heart a great gift! http://pricechopper.com/recipes/11374/Caramelized-Brussels-Sprouts-with-Lemon http://pricechopper.com/recipes/7283/Apple-Date-Squares http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/HealthyLiving/HeathyEating/Nutrition/National-Eating-Healthy-Day_UCM_454414_Article.jsp#.WA-K9fkrKM8       Written by Sara Lilkas, Marketing Intern  When people ask about my favorite foods my first instinct is to choose apples. But when I say apples I do not only mean the delicious fruit, I’m also including the multitude of apple flavored baked goods, ciders, and the association they have with fall. Growing up in Upstate New York aka Apple Country, I would probably be considered a social pariah if apples were not high on my list of favorite foods. I couldn’t even tell you why I like apples so much since each variety has its own distinct flavor. If I had to pick my favorite varieties they would have to be golden delicious, granny smith, and honeycrisp (so you can see my taste go from very sweet to very tart.) The real reason that I have apples on my mind is the weather is beginning to cool down so in addition to pulling out the scarves and boots, apples will begin to pop up everywhere again (which is fantastic.) What’s even more fantastic is the amount of apples available from local growers. Even though New York State may be known for apples, I have recently learned they are actually grown throughout the Northeastern United States. There are tons of orchards throughout the Northeast and many of them are still family owned and run. Price Chopper works hard to find the best tasting apples from local growers located in various parts of New York, Connecticut, and Vermont (and that’s only including a few of the growers they purchase from.) In this search for the best apples Price Chopper has developed long term relationships with many growers including Sunrise Orchards in Vermont (20 years!) apples treesSunrise Orchards and Roger’s Orchards in Connecticut take great pride in how their apples are grown. Both orchards are certified as Eco Apples™ and have to adhere to strict growing practices in order to receive this certification. The program focuses on the quality of the soil the apples are grown on, and keeping beneficial insects within the environment. As part of this process having as much information about what is going on in the orchard and the plants surrounding the area is essential. By monitoring insect populations, growing conditions, and other factors that are important to the growing process growers can determine whether it is necessary to treat against any unwanted fungus or pest that may be harmful to the apple crop. The Eco Apple™ certification is not given out to every orchard, every year. In order to receive the certification the orchards have to undergo a review by the IPM Institute of North America, to ensure that the growing conditions have been upheld for the year. As I mentioned earlier I really love ciders. Every once in a while I may indulge in a hard cider (my favorite is Woodchuck!), but the typical nonalcoholic fare is my true favorite. There is nothing better than a beautiful fall day with a glass of apple cider. I’ve recently been experimenting with warming apple cider for those days when the first fingers of winter reach into the air. I’ve found warming up apple cider and adding a pinch of cinnamon does the trick! When it comes to apple baking I love the classics. There is nothing better in my mind then a warm slice of apple pie (or a whole apple pie whatever floats your boat). My best friend has recently been trying to teach me how to bake and we decided to start big with the pie. We used this recipe for an apple pie from scratch, but a pre-made or gluten free crust could easily be substituted! How do you enjoy apples in the fall? Share your apple creations on Instagram with #PriceChopper and #Market32! Cold redcurrant tea with lemon and mint in a glass jar. Written by Sara Rockman, Marketing Intern  One way to stay cool and hydrated in the summer heat? Infused water. Infused water is a great way to drink the recommend eight 8 oz. glasses a day, but without it being boring. Infused water is simply water flavored by fresh fruit, with the occasional herb or two thrown in. The fruit can either be put directly into the water or there are special bottles and pitchers made specifically for infusing. (These are nice because they help so you don’t accidentally drink a seed or unexpected chunk of fruit.) I usually like to make my infused water the night before so more flavor is absorbed (I also recommend this if you are a chronic user of the snooze button like myself, so you don’t have to rush in the morning), but for a more subtle taste it can be made the day you plan to drink it. If making it the day of, let the water sit for about 10 minutes either with ice or in the fridge before you drink it so the flavors have a chance to be absorbed. This step should also be taken if you are refilling your water bottle throughout the day. Towards the end of the day, there won’t be a very strong flavor, but the subtle flavor is still very refreshing! As for what to put into your infused water, it’s pretty much open to what you like. I go from lemon and lime one day, to strawberry-kiwi, to mixed berry, whatever suits my mood (or more truthfully, whatever is in my fridge). One of my favorite infused water recipe is a strawberry-cucumber water, with basil. (I know it sounds like a really weird mix, but it’s very refreshing)! When choosing ingredients for your infused water pick fruits loaded with vitamins and antioxidants to help boost your metabolism and immune system. Plus, drinking lots of water whether infused or not is good for your skin and promotes weight loss!  As an all-natural option, it keeps you both hydrated and healthy by cutting out unnecessary sugars and additives. Pinterest is a great place to find inspiration for different recipes. Submit your favorite infused water recipe in the comments and it could be featured on our Instagram and Pinterest! Written by: Ellie Wilson, MS, RDN Black Horse Farm Coxsackie, NY Farmers – Lloyd Zimmerman and Family LloydZBlackhorseLloyd Zimmerman did not grow up farming – he was a NYC kid, child of two college professors, but he became interested in agriculture because his family had a summer home in the country. At 21, he graduated with a degree in agricultural economics, and purchased an old farm in Coeyman’s Hollow with the help of his parents. He farmed part-time, while working for New York State, eventually working in the Governor’s office on agriculture and civil defense. In 1964, the farm started making money and he “retired” from state service. He and his wife raised lamb, initially, and one of his first customers was Central Markets. After Vietnam, market pressures moved him into vegetables, and he hasn’t looked back. His favorite part of farming is watching crops grow, and working with the broad group of people in the produce business. While he did not grow up farming, his children did, and two daughters, Chellie Apa and Lisa Buhrmaster, now run major aspects of the operation. They employ on average about 55 people – this is a diverse and dynamic business. At this time of year, his day starts at 4:30 AM, but has started as early as 2:30, which some of their team starts still because they are packing trucks. That work is essential to bringing in those fresh items – time between field and fork is important. Lloyd chooses his seeds based on science and savvy – sweet corn and tomatoes should have a good, sweet taste, so they start there, and then look at some of the scientific specifications of a product, like the measurement of sweetness, called degrees Brix. They work with the seed salesman to locate varieties of new items that have a good reputation and production. There are very strict standards and procedures in place around harvest and packing – cleanliness is king, and Black Horse Farm is GAP certified. GAP stands for Good BlackhorsecabbageAgricultural Practices, and it is a system of practices and record keeping that helps farmers ensure food safety is being managed. Price Chopper only works with farms that are GAP certified, as part of our commitment to ensuring our customers can be confident that they really are getting the best quality fruits and vegetables from us. Attention to refrigeration, hand washing and other aspects of safe food production are part and parcel of their work. They also sort their produce with those less fortunate in mind, and work with local food pantries to supply good food that is not premium grade. There are some game changers on the horizon – Lloyd sees two that he thinks will impact farming in enormous ways. The first is the use of drones – he has been wishing for these for over 20 years, and is excited that they are coming to farming. The other is the advanced education farmers are starting to benefit from, as children return to their family farms with degrees in agronomy, veterinary science and business. I really enjoyed speaking with Lloyd – his gravelly voice ebbed and flowed as we spoke, full of passion and humor and knowledge. With helping people eat more fruits and vegetables so central to my role, I asked what he thought would help people do a better job, and he thought helping people understand what local produce is and who the farmers are is a great start. We completely bonded over favorites – tomatoes, on a delicious BLT sandwich with a malted milk (I make mine with the Price Chopper pre-cooked bacon – slices are nice and thin, great for sandwiches).  So, please take my advice – take advantage of the season and enjoy the bounty Price Chopper brings you from farmers like Lloyd Zimmerman – sweet summer! Check out this recipe for Lemon & Garlic Glazed Corn on the Cob!
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Steamed Artichokes with Butter

Nothing says spring more than fresh produce and this week, we have a great deal on Ocean Mist Heirloom Artichokes. Stop by your produce department and pick some Heirloom Artichokes- they are on sale 2 for $4 through Saturday! Tell us how many cases of artichokes you think we’ll sell this week (hint: there are approximately 12 artichokes in a case) and you could win a $25 Price Chopper gift card! Leave your comment below and on our Facebook page by Saturday, the 29th and we’ll pick the 4 winners who have the closest guess.  Read official contest rules here. The Heirloom artichoke is the “original” variety brought to California in the early 1900’s by Italian Immigrants—long time growers refer to them as the classic Green Globe variety. Ocean-Mist-Logo-BW-72dpiDid you know these artichokes are never grown from seeds? They grow only from the same root stock that has been passed down to each family of farmers for more than 90 years. Over 99% of all artichokes grown in the US come from California. Additionally, 95% of the heirloom artichoke comes specifically from the region of Castroville, California. Castroville, the artichoke capital of the world, is located right along the Pacific Ocean’s Monterey Bay and is home to the annual Artichoke Festival. Artichokes are a Nutritional Powerhouse for Fiber and Antioxidants: TIPS FOR PREPPING: How to Simply Steam Artichokes
  1. Cut the stems off the artichokes
  2. Cut off approximately the top 1/2 inch of the artichoke
  3. Trim the tips off of all petals with kitchen scissors
  4. Bang the cut side on the edge of a table to open up the artichoke petals
  5. Boil water, adding a few lemon slices & the pealed stems of the artichokes
  6. Place face down on steamer basket and steam until underside of leaves are tender
  7. Peel off petals and dip in butter (or your sauce of choice) & enjoy!
Tyler Blance- Produce Merchandising

Cabotsmith5It’s the holiday season, and many of our local growers are enjoying a well deserved break from the busy growing season.  However, one of our growers, Richard Hourihan in Cabot, Vermont, is still growing strong!  Richard’s farm is unique.  He delivers fresh-picked produce in the summer and fall, and then delivers fresh-picked fir trees to us once the holiday season comes around.

I had the opportunity to talk a little with Mr. Hourihan about his farm and what he does for a living. How long have you been a local grower with Price Chopper? “I’ve been a proud Chopper Farmer since the early 2000’s.” What’s your favorite crop to grow? “My favorite thing in the world to grow is pumpkins.” Tell us a little about your tree farm operation. How many acres of crops do you grow? “I grow 60 acres of fir trees and then 130 acres of vegetables.  The tree business was how I started out.  I only grow balsam fir trees- they’re the best you can get and they’re beautiful. Our trees are chemical-free and grown naturally without fertilizer or sprays.” What’s the best part of doing what you do? “For me, the best part is the view.  My farm is located on top of a big hill, and the view is breathtaking.  I like to sit out here early in the morning, listen to the radio and enjoy the view around me.” Operating a summer/fall vegetable farm and a tree farm makes for a long farming season. What’s your favorite time of the year? “The day when my season’s over- just kidding!  I like spring, when I’m getting ready to plant everything and planning what I’m going to grow in the coming season for places like Price Chopper.  I like pulling out my seed catalog!” We’re proud to support growers like Richard and his family, from sweet corn to acorn squash, all the way to fir trees in December.  If you happen to be in the St. Johnsbury, VT area, check out the Cabot Smith Farm fir trees at our St. Johnsbury store on Memorial Drive!    

Written by: Tyler Blance- Produce Merchandising

Cherries are a classic fruit that everyone is familiar with.  When you’re shopping at your local Price Chopper this time of year, chances are you’ll find a freshly-stocked and vibrant cherry display.  I’m here to tell you a little story and give you some information on those cherries. StemiltHillCherries(2)We get our cherries from the Mathison family in Washington at Stemilt Growers- a family that was a pioneer in the cherry industry.  Stemilt is a Native American term that means “coming from the mountains”- Pretty cool!  Last week, a group of teammates from our Produce team took a trip out to visit the folks at Stemilt, located on the beautiful Stemilt Hill in Washington, to take a tour of the operation.  They were very impressed- the Mathisons have been farming the same land since 1893!  Kyle Mathison (pictured in overalls in the group photo) is a 4th generation cherry farmer whose passion in life is growing cherries.  Kyle’s cherry farming passion helps to create the beautiful, luscious cherries that you can find in your local Price Chopper!StemiltTripProduce On the nutritional end, cherries make a great snack.  Cherries are high in antioxidants and contain melatonin, which helps you maintain optimum brain function.  They’re low in fat and calories, cholesterol and sodium free, and on top of all that: they’re a great source of vitamin C and potassium. So there you have it! Next time you’re journeying through our produce department, you’ll know a little more about those beautiful cherries that catch your eye. There are lots of great recipes for cherries, but today I’d like to offer a simple, delicious way to create the classic cherry pie.  When 80’s hair band Warrant sang that oh-so-catchy “She’s My Cherry Pie,” they may have been referring to this easy and awesome recipe. Written by Tyler Blance- Produce Merchandising

Local Produce in our Brand New Marshalls Creek Store!

    Last week, we cut the ribbon and opened the doors of our brand new store in Marshalls Creek Pennsylvania, built in the beautiful countryside southeast of Scranton.  Our Marshalls Creek store is chock full of unique items and local products, but one thing we are particularly proud of providing for our Marshalls Creek chopper shoppers is local fruits and vegetables. GurdaLettuceJourneying through the produce department of this rural PA store, shoppers are presented with a variety of fresh, local produce from nearby areas.  A. Gurda Produce, a local grower in the Middletown, NY area happily supplied us with their beautiful locally grown lettuces and radishes straight from the farm.  Andy Gurda’s crops are grown in what’s known as the “Black Dirt Region” of New York State; the dark, rich soil was created at the end of the Ice Age!  Talk about a throwback. Marshalls Creek is a short drive away from the “Jersey Fresh” produce of the garden state: New Jersey.  We featured a variety of Jersey Fresh items for our shoppers to explore: Blueberries grown under the popular “Top Crop” name, basil, green and yellow squash and cucumbers straight from Jersey were all on display in our colorful, freshly-stocked produce department.  And to top it all off, we had a special visit from Top Crop’s own blueberry mascot and a member of the Donio farm operation!NJMCreekSquash Locally grown produce is something we take a lot of pride in supplying throughout the communities and areas we’re a part of, so we were happy to add Marshalls Creek into the mix.  As for the rest of our Chopper Shoppers, the local produce season is coming into full swing, so keep an eye out for locally grown fruits and vegetables in your neighborhood Price Chopper!  I’ll be updating you throughout the summer with locally grown happenings, so check back to see what’s growing on near you!

545362_10150591757831504_1039587465_nProduce for Kids® and Price Chopper are partnering for the Get Healthy, Give Hope campaign to raise funds for local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals®. From June 16 to July 27, the more produce you add to your shopping list, the more hope we can give to local children!

To learn more about the campaign, visit the Produce for Kids display, featuring Sportacus and Chica from Sprout® TV, in the produce section of all Price Chopper stores to pick up easy-to-prepare recipes and a shopping list of all participating products.

You can also visit the Produce for Kids Facebook page to enter the Get Healthy with Produce for Kids Sweepstakes for the chance to win a Sprout gift basket and grocery store gift cards.  In addition, Produce for Kids will be holding weekly giveaways on Facebook, Twitter and Instragram throughout the campaign.

As part of the campaign, popular Sprout characters will interact with kids at two Produce for Kids’ in-store appearances, featuring popular characters from the Super Why show, from 11:30am-2:30pm on June 29 at the Price Chopper located on 167 W. Main Street, Hopkinton, MA 01748 and from 11:30am-2:30pm on July 13 at the Price Chopper located at 4547 Milford Road, East Stroudsburg, PA 18302.Kids-Only-Button

The following companies proudly support the Get Healthy, Give Hope campaign and your local Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals: A. Gurda Produce Romaine & Boston Lettuce, Radishes & Red C Potatoes; Dole® Salads; SUNSET® Campari® Brand Cocktail Tomatoes; NatureSweet® Glorys Perfect Ingredient Tomatoes, Olivia’s Organics Organic Packaged Salads; Shuman Produce – RealSweet® Vidalia® Onions; Summeripe® Peaches, Plums, & Nectarines; Turbana® Bananas

Visit www.produceforkids.com/pricechopper for more information.