Food Finds & More

How’s your holiday shopping going? I have a few new things you might want to look for as you are out and about in the stores or browsing on Amazon. In the past week I have found myself in Costco, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, CVS Pharmacy, Macy’s, Crate & Barrel, Cost Plus Imports, Raleys, Sur La Table and most likely a few others stores that I have now forgotten about it. Of course I also did a little shopping on Amazon as well. A quick look at my checking account would reveal the whole story but I don’t think I want to see it all tallied up right now!

Benson's Table Tasty

This can be purchased from Amazon. It’s a salt free seasoning that has a nice mild yet salty flavor. I use it on veggies, in soups and stews and veggie burgers. It’s a blend of nutritional yeast, dried vegetables and herbs.

Parma Vegan Parmesan

These new to me Parma seasonings were found at Whole Foods. I love them – the garlicky green is my favorite flavor. They are nice on popcorn – but be forewarned it doesn’t stick real well on dry popcorn but does impart some nice flavor. Sprinkle over cooked veggies for a nice treat and it would also be good on pasta. The garlicky green is a mixture of walnuts, nutritional yeast, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, kelp, hemp seeds sesame seeds a little salt basil and oregano. Just 20 calories for 2 teaspoons and 30 mg sodium. Check out the Parma Store Locator to find some where you live.

Costco Pom Pom Wonderful pomegranate arils all ready to eat. I love these ruby red gems on top of mixed greens,  tossed in a fruit salad, over soy yogurt or just to eat by the spoonful. This is a Costco find but check your local grocery store and Trader Joe’s as well for smaller containers. All of the joy and non of the mess!

FuYu PersimmonsFuyu persimmons are in season and I bought a big container of  them at Costco. Of course they can also be found in the grocery store and the local farmer’s market. To me they taste like a pumpkin crossed with an apple. The Fuyu ones while firm can be peeled, sliced and eaten like any other fresh fruit – they are not overly sweet. I like them in a winter fruit salad too. I was just given a dozen of the hachiya persimmons and have to figure out what to do with them – from what I have read they are better used in baked goods.

Red Wine VinegarThe beautiful bottle and packaging caught my attention for this barrel aged red wine vinegar. It has a wonderful flavor perfect for salads and adding a little acid to a variety of dishes. This was another Costco purchase. Pretty enough to give as a gift to a foodie friend!

Wine GlassesJust in time for the holidays – wine glasses from Costco. These are restaurant quality – break resistant! They are dishwasher safe but I will still hand wash them. Don’t limit yourself to just serving wine in pretty glasses- they are perfect for sparkling cider, bubbly water with lemon or lime and a fruit smoothie takes on a whole new level of sophistication when served in a stemmed glass!

Parchment Baking Cups

While shopping in my local Raley’s grocery store I found these parchment baking cups in the health food aisle where the bulk foods are located. Parchment is a wonderful non stick product so when you bake muffins or cupcakes using these liners they easily peel off.  What an amazing find – I adore them! To find some where you live use the Paper Chef Product Finder. Also available on Amazon.

Thanksgiving 2013 008 (640x480) (2)

I haven’t used this cashew meal yet but I plan on using it in recipes in place of almond meal for a little different flavor.

Thanksgiving 2013 009 (640x480) (480x640)It should work well for baking gluten free muffins or cookies like the family favorite Deluxe Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Pom Juice

Pomegranate Juice mixed with some sparkling water (or a little champagne/white wine if you prefer) makes for a pretty holiday beverage when served up in the new wine glasses. A couple ounces in a smoothie adds flavor and a nutritional boost like in this Pomegranite Green Smoothie. Use it to make delicious Go Berry Breakfast Bars.  Costco sells these jumbo sized bottles but smaller ones are available at most grocery stores.

Kitchen Resilience Cushion mats

My two new best friends are these Chef’s Kitchen Resilience Cushion Mats for my kitchen work areas. I will be the first to admit that they aren’t all that attractive but after using them for a couple of weeks I am sold on having them. They reduce the foot and leg fatigue from standing in one place. Since having foot surgery one year ago standing on this hard wood floor has caused me a great deal of foot pain. If you have followed my blog for very long you know I love to cook and often engage in marathon cooking sessions so these mats are getting a work out! I found them at Costco but I have also seen different brands on Amazon at Sam’s Club and Bed Bath & Beyond. I find myself moving them around depending on where I am working in the kitchen. Everyone who comes in the kitchen wants to stand on them – they are so amazing! My only regret is that I didn’t buy them sooner.

Nutmeg Notes

I am doing quite well with my “Do Less – Enjoy More” approach to this holiday season. I have turned down a few product reviews because I know I don’t really have the time to do more than I have already committed to doing in the next couple of weeks. Once you start saying “no” it seems to get easier and easier to do it with no guilt!

My holiday shopping is done. There are some things to wrap and a couple things I want to make but I have plenty of time for all of that.

Doing Less – Enjoying More!


Add Your Thoughts

I like to drive around at night and look at the festive holiday lights displays. If the weather is nice it’s even more fun to bundle up and walk through the neighborhood and look at the houses all lit up.

What is one holiday tradition you are looking forward to?

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  1. Beverly says:

    Greetings from snowy South Dakota! I love these posts! Let me tell you, I have been LOVING Costco! I need to go there sometime without my husband tsking me every time I want to put something in the cart! haha With my oldest away at college, I love having him home for the holidays. He’s home about a month and I may grumble about the food disappearing more quickly, the water bill going up, the shoes and stuff laying around, I absolutely love having him there. We have lots of holiday traditions — playing games late into the night on Christmas Eve being one. Apples to Apples is one of our favorites! Have a great holiday Tami!

    1. Tami says:

      Hello Beverly! I can hear the joy and excitement in your “voice” as you write about having your son home for the holidays! I had to chuckle as I read about the food disappearing more quickly, the water bill going up and stuff laying around. Those are all good reminders of what it’s like when the kids lived at home. The house is full of life when they are home – there is an energy that spills out from the young people.

      I do hope you get a change to shop solo at Costco one day soon – so many treasures there to be found if one has the time to seek them out.

      Soak up all the fun, love and good times that you can while your son is home to visit. Happy Holidays to you and your family Beverly. 🙂

  2. Cammy@TippyToeDiet says:

    I’ll definitely look for the Benson’s seasoning for my grandmother. At age 93, she’s not embracing the low-salt diet she’s supposed to be following. 🙂

    1. Tami says:

      I could only find it on line Cammy. Going salt free or low salt takes a lot of getting used to. 🙂

  3. Kris says:

    For the hachiya persimmons, you need to wait until they feel like a water balloon about to burst. You can put them in baked goods, smoothies, margaritas, or spoon over yogurt. The way I like them best, though, is just freeze them ripe, then cut off the top, and scoop the semi-frozen pulp out of the skin like sorbet. http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2006/11/persimmons-and-frozen-persimmon-sorbet.html

    1. Tami says:

      Thank you for the tips about the persimmons. I tried one of the overly ripe ones today and it was amazing! I will check out the link you provided – thank you so much!

  4. Renee'sKitchenAdventures says:

    I’ve had one of those mats in my kitchen for some time now and it is amazing. I love it! I keep a plastic baked throw rug over mine, so it matches the kitchen a little better.

    I need to look for that vinegar next costco trip. yum.

    I have never had a persimmons. On my try list though, I see them everywhere now!

    1. Tami says:

      You must try both kinds of persimmons. They are such a treat and different from anything I have ever had.

  5. GiGi Eats Celebrities says:

    This time of year, I just can’t, can’t look at my checking account balance, LOL! It’s not so merry!

    1. Tami says:

      Oh yes I understand! LOL. 🙂

  6. Jody - Fit at 56 says:

    I need that kitchen & the house it is in! 🙂

    1. Tami says:

      I do enjoy my kitchen and my house! 🙂

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