January windstorms, low temperatures and widespread power outages make it downright daunting just to step foot out of the house these days. Nevertheless, I’m inviting you to brave the elements and visit one of our markets for items that can keep your healthy start to the new year going strong!
Don’t Miss our Massive Bulk Tea Sale
Look, it’s time to admit it — you were pretty hard on the ol’ digestive track during the holidays, weren’t you? Treat your belly and your taste buds with some of our high-quality loose teas in Bulk. Now’s the perfect time, too, because they’re all 20 percent off through January.
We’re talking about a massive variety of black, herbal and green teas, including green matcha tea, which has 10 times more healthy ingredients than regular green tea.
Or you can make your own concoction to suit your own tastes with local custom blends from Market Spice in Seattle and Spice Hut in Bellingham.
Nita Wills, our Bulk Foods Category Manager, believes our selection of rooibos teas are a bit of a sleeper item. Rooibos, pronounced “roy-boss”, means “red bush” and is indigenous to South Africa.
“It’s really one of our shining items in Bulk, but not a lot of people are familiar with it. It looks and brews just like a black tea, but it’s naturally caffeine free,” Wills said.
It’s full of antioxidants, low in tannins and free from oxalic acid.
Making it the perfect choice for a cozy blanket, a good book and not a care in the world for the weather outside.
Sharwil Avocados from Hawaii
We’re all familiar with the Hass avocado — most stores carry them year-round. But for the next three weeks or so we’re also carrying the Sharwil avocado from Hawaii (a fact that warranted two mentions of us on King 5 TV don’t ya know).
These avocados are grown in rich, volcanic soil and are one of the most protein- and vitamin-packed fruits in the world. Cool! These little beauties are narrower than a Hass, with a smaller seed. They’re creamy and buttery with nutty, herbal notes. Taste them now before they leave.
It’s a big deal because these avocados haven’t been sold on the mainland for 25 years due to concerns over fruit flies hitching a ride to the continental U.S., sparking years of research to develop a system to reduce the fruit fly risk.
Build Your Own Bowl of Goodness
I’m a big believer in making some of kind of grain bowl at least once during the work week, mostly because it’s cheap, relatively easy and pretty healthy. But that doesn’t mean it has to be bland. Keep an eye out for our Build-a-Bowl displays, where we’ll have some inspiring ideas for new twists on this healthy eating idea.
Build your bowl around healthy chunks of free-range, air-chilled, Washington-grown chicken breast from Ranger. Buy one package at $7.99 per pound, get a second package of equal or lesser value free!
Then throw in one of our varieties of fermented veggies from OlyKraut. Note only are they an easy way to add antioxidants and a fun, light crunch to your bowl, they’re also made with organic local produce and Oregon-harvested salt. They’re also produced right around the corner in Olympia. While you’re at it, check out our Kumana Avocado Sauces, too. It’s fun to discover a new, tasty sauce to give a quick upgrade to dinner and this one doesn’t disappoint. Non-GMO, gluten-free and made with real fruits and veggies, a dash of Kumana adds creamy avocado flavor with a little kick.
Our very own cheese whiz, Shauna Howell, offers up a cheese worth discovering.
PARMIGIANO-REGGIANO: Known throughout Italy and the world as “The King of Cheeses,” this hard-aged Italian cheese is only about 30 percent water and 70 percent packed with nutrients, protein and minerals, making it a natural choice for those looking to eat healthier with high protein snacks.
This cheese is steeped in umami, the fifth sense of taste, with a richness that touches your soul with its depth of flavor. It will impart that savory, delicious flavor to anything you add it to.
Produced in the Emilia Romagna region for well over 900 years, Parmigiano-Reggiano needs just three ingredients: salt and rennet, and unpasteurized cow’s milk from locally raised cows. Every 80-pound wheel of cheese needs exactly 159 gallons of milk.
With production standards calling for traditional animal rennet, this may not be the cheese to offer your vegetarian friends, but I think it’s the perfect ingredient for any cheesy recipe, from pizza to salads, as well as cheese plates. It’s the perfect snacking cheese, too!
I particularly love a chunky, rough-cut wedge from the center of the wheel lightly drizzled with an aged balsamic vinegar, some seasonal fruit and my favorite crusty bread – perfecto!
Chris Allen is a copywriter and assistant marketer with Town & Country Markets. He’s a former contributing editor, radio anchor and producer, and an Air Force veteran. He’s also mastered the art of chopping red onions with one hand while sipping a dry Tempranillo in the other.