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6/25/2015  

Summer Jammin'


Our Produce Department is a happenin' place in the summertime.
Right now, we have some of the best peaches and nectarines you will ever eat. The grapes, cherries, strawberries, and blueberries are all wonderful...and all this fruit makes us think of jam!

Canning at home is so satisfying. We carry what you need in terms of jars and pectin, and the rest you can ad-lib with whatever pots and tongs you already have in your kitchen.

For those of us who prefer to forgo the work, and get straight to opening the jars, we also carry some of the best jellies and jams available...from somebody else's kitchen. Here are a few staff picks:



Frog Hollow Farm
is a thriving 143-acre organic farm located in Brentwood, and home to hundreds of fruit trees. Their fruit is a favorite at Bay Area Farmer's Markets, and lucky for us, they make some of the best jams and chutneys around.

Mountain Fruit Company
's Jams and Jellies are all product by hand in small batches in Chico California. All jams are contain over 77% whole fruit and have half the sugar of other "Low sugar" jams. They are great in all the usual ways, plus in smoothies, tarts, cheesecakes, and as an ingredient in sauces.

Blue Chair Jam--This Oakland gem has reinvented preserving for the modern age through a distinctive combination of traditional methods and modern taste sensibilities. They use organic and sustainably-grown fruit from local growers.

Blue Chair produces a seemingly endless variety of flavors such as Bergamot Marmalade, Black Mission Fig Jam with Black Sesame, Blackberry-Violette Jam, and Blood Orange-Chestnut Honey Marmalade with Rosemary. Stop by, you never know what will be in our store because--well, we never know exactly what we're getting untill we see their delivery!




Each of these recipes gives a different spin on delicious spreadable treats. Lavender and Lemon Jelly is a classic recipe with a flavorful twist, Red Onion Marmalade goes with savories, and finally, Fresh Strawberry Chia Jam can be prepared in minutes and left to set while you are making breakfast.

Get the Recipes...


By Rachael Saunders

Not your grandma's jam book!

Blue Chair Fruit: Jam, Jelly & Marmalade approaches the nostalgic preserving kitchen with a modern and sustainable eye. Author Rachel Saunders is the owner of Oakland's artisanal jam producer, Blue Chair Fruit.

In addition to offering more than 100 original jam, jelly, and marmalade recipes, master jam artisan Rachel Saunders shares all of her technical preserving knowledge, as well as her unique jam maker's perspective on fruit.

Sample recipes include Strawberry-Marsala Jam with Rosemary, Italian Lemon Marmalade, and Early Girl Tomato Jam.

This book is a complete tutorial on jammin', with photos, illustrations, recommended equipment and measurements-all presented with exacting precision. Rachel explains every aspect of jam and marmalade making in step-by-step detail. The Blue Chair Jam Cookbook is a one-of-a-kind, must-have resource for home and professional cooks alike.


Culinary Bliss

Plugrá European-Style Butter is crafted with a slow-churned process, giving it a creamier texture. This makes for flakier pastries, unbelievably creamy sauces, enviable risottos, sizzling sautés, and extraordinary flavored butters.

Plugrá butter contains less water than most butter. Lower moisture helps you create cakes that rise higher, cookies that crisp more evenly, and flakier pastries.

 

Plugrá is also fantastic on toast, fresh veggies and simple dishes that highlight the butter's flavor.

 

Read More...

From the Cocktail Post

This weeks post comes with news of two new items in our store.

First, we have made a category expansion in the spirits department: Mezcal. This smokey cousin of Tequila is popping up in craft cocktail bars as close as our neighborhood, to the mid-west and New York.

 

 

Extra! Extra! Read all about it!
Magazine stirs up controversy!  

 

The second item is a new publication,  Imbibe Magazine.  

 

This edition of The Cocktail Post is the drink pictured on the May/June issue of Imbibe--the Slow Fade. Its a mezcal-based cocktail from the Chicago bar Analogue created by Henry Prendergast and Robby Haynes.

 

Semifreddi's


All of their bread is just flour, water, salt and yeast...how can this tastes so good?


Semifreddi's mis­sion sums up why we love them: Make the best baked bread and pas­tries in the uni­verse, offer them at a fair and rea­son­able price, pro­vide supe­rior cus­tomer ser­vice, treat our employees like family and give back to the com­mu­nity. Plus they are East Bay local.

 

They boast a won­derful array of prod­ucts from beau­tiful baguettes; to tasty loaves of Challah, Rustic Sour, Sweet Batard, and Rose­mary Focaccia; to deca­dent French Pas­tries like their famous Morning Buns, Crois­sants and Apple Turnovers-there is too much variety to mention.

 

Click the link below to watch this YouTube tour of their new fac­tory in Alameda--which was designed as green as humanly pos­sible.

 

Read More... 

Come on down and relish this exquisite gift of summertime.


It's offi­cially summer, and we have the most amazing peaches and nec­tarines in our pro­duce depart­ment. They are so huge, juicy, sweet, and bursting with flavor...it's news worthy!

We will even wipe the juice off our chins and elbows to sell you some.

 

Read More...

Never-Fail Biscuits and Strawberry Freezer Jam
From Amy and our "What's For Dinner Wednesday" recipe blog 


Jammin' Biscuits

My grandmother was a canner. Growing up, I remember every summer she would can her tomatoes and the fresh peaches that she picked herself in Brentwood. She also made an incredible blackberry jam from the bramble I once fell into as a child. (No es bueno.) Alas, that recipe has been lost. I've looked for it everywhere, but I am starting to think that she didn't have it written down-and made it from memory. Gam did it the old school way, too, with melted wax on top of the jam. So good...

 

I started canning about 8 years ago, mainly because the apricot tree in the back yard of our old house produced so many apricots one year that I had to do something. I just couldn't bring myself to throw them out. I brought some here to the store to share, but even that didn't put a dent in the quantity. So I made jam. Lots of it. I was hooked on canning.

 

In the following years I kept making jam, but I also started making pickles and chutneys and also canning the tomatoes from my garden. When those crops were exceptionally big I, made salsas and tomato sauces. It was work, but tasting the flavor of my summer tomatoes in January made the hard, hot work worth it.

 

This year, sadly, I won't be doing much canning or preserving- at least not as much as in previous summers for two reasons. The first is I don't have a garden. With the water restrictions I decided it just wasn't worth planting a big garden and fighting that battle. The second reason is I just don't have time. For the next five weeks there is something going on every weekend, sometimes more than one event. I barely know what day it is most of the time.

I can't just not do anything, so I'm going the quick and easy route. Freezer jam is great and you can do it if you find a free hour. (For me, that's midnight).  

We are crazy for strawberry jam in my house-especially when you spoon it on warm, fresh (and really quick! ) biscuits. Yum...

 

Strawberry Freezer Jam
Makes about 5 (8 oz) half pints

 

Get the recipe...

 

In This Issue
This Month's Cookbook pick
Featured Product
The Cocktail Post
Vendor of the Month
News & Events
Never-Fail Biscuits and Strawberry Freezer Jam
Seven Days a Week
 
Monday through  
Sat­urday  
9 AM to 8 PM

Sunday
9 AM to 7 PM 

 

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Visit our recipe blog to learn what Amy, our VP and resident foodie, is cooking up in her home kitchen.

Black and Tan Sundae

Spinach Cobb Salad with Bacon, Blue Cheese, Avocado & Derby Dressing

Singapore Sling

Summer Pannini

Peach Cobbler
 
Canal House's Chicken Thighs with Lemon

Spicy Beer Marinated Flank Steak

Grilled Pork Chops with Sweet Lemongrass Marinade

Mexican Bulldog Margarita

Classic Ensenada Fish Tacos

Amy's Roast Chicken

Old Fashioned Chocolate Layer Cake
 
Crispy, Crackly Apple-Almond Tart

Cashel Blue, Spinach and Smoked Salmon Tartlets

Easy Self-Rising Biscuits

Classic Chicken Chow Mein

Julie & Julia's Bruschetta

Spicy Mushroom Tamales

Mush­room and Shallot Quiche

Amy's Gua­camole

Roasted Cauli­flower & Hazelnut Salad

Bach­elor Beef Stew

Crock Pot Oats & Amish Style Baked Oat­meal

Champagne Cocktail

Irish Coffee

Holiday Cookie Basket

Anise Cakes

Roasted Fresh Ham with Citrus and Rye

Christmas Butter Cookies

Gam's Apple Chutney

Pie Month

Autumn Salad with Apples, Comté, and Hazelnuts

Deconstructed Holiday Turkey with Sage Gravy

Cornmeal-Crusted Crayfish Pies

Old-Fashioned Apple Cake with Brown Sugar Frosting

Three Soups!
Bonus Recipes


Apple, Onion and Cheddar Soup

Traditional French Cassoulet

Endive & Fuyu Persimmon Salad with Pecans

Double Cut pork Chops with Garlic Butter

Inside Out Pumpkin Muffins

Cock-A-Leekie Soup

Crab and Corn Pies with Corn Crab Sauce

Amy's Hummus
 
 
 

 
 


















 

 
 


 
 
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