Local Produce Legend Fabrizio Casini Joins Plum Market
Former Hiller’s Market Director and Metro-Detroit Produce Veteran to join Plum Market as Senior Produce Specialist
Plum Market is pleased to announce that Fabrizio Casini, former Director of Produce for Hiller’s Markets, recently joined Plum Market as Senior Produce Specialist. With over 45 years in the industry, Casini is a valued addition to the Plum Market family and is excited to grow Plum Market’s organic program.
Casini’s was born in Florence, Italy, where he began working for his father’s produce company when he was only ten years old. When he moved to Michigan in 1975, he quickly became a local legend for his hands-on approach and ability to source new and unusual items. Plum Market guests can expect to benefit immediately from Casini’s decades of experience with Hiller’s Markets as he brings his expertise to Plum Market stores and continues our tradition of offering guests the best quality, selection, and service.
But don’t take our word for it – Fabrizio, or Fab as he’s known by friends, has won the devotion of many guests who will be delighted to hear he is staying with a local Michigan company. Mary Henning of Ann Arbor recently praised Casini for his commitment to service, saying, “Your kindness and appreciation of a great tomato or finding the uncommon ingredients for special dishes has made me a devoted shopper.”
Would you like Fabrizio to find a specialty produce item for you? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Memorial Day Mint Lemonade
Friday May 23rd 2014, 9:14 pm
Filed under: Produce
Memorial Day is the unofficial launch of summer, bringing sunshine, parades, and outdoor entertaining. Whether you’re firing up the grill for some simple, All Natural Applegate Hot Dogs, or you’re going low-and-slow with a Niman Ranch Pork barbecue, you’ll want to keep your friends and family hydrated with a tasty, summery drink. And nothing says summer grilling and entertaining like lemonade.
But you don’t want to serve them an over-sweet drink made from a mix or, worse, some bland lemon water. This quick and easy recipe will keep the party moving and everything interesting:
First, make Simple Syrup. Bring one cup of water and one cup of granulated sugar to a boil. Stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from the heat and add 1 Cup of rinsed and roughly chopped organic mint. Stir to combine, making sure all of the mint is wet. Let sit for about 30 minutes, until the simple syrup has cooled to room temperature. Use a fine mesh strainer to strainer out the mint, reserving the syrup in a glass jar or bottle.
Squeeze enough lemons until you have 1 Cup of fresh lemon juice, about 6-8 lemons. Add to a pitcher and combine with 1 Cup of the simple syrup. Add 6-8 cups of cold water and stir to combine. Add slices of lemon and sprigs of mint for garnish. Depending on personal preference, you may need more sugar to create that lip-smacking, thirst-quenching, summery-goodness of your favorite lemonade.
The final step, of course, is to share a glass with a member of our Armed Services and thank him or her for protecting us.
Sweets After V-Day!
If you need a little something to help you come down from your Valentine’s Day sugar-rush, we have two great ideas for you: Compartes Chocolatier and Heirloom Navel Oranges.
Well, this one won’t really help you come down as much as it will keep you flying, but if you’re still in the mood for chocolate, you’ll fall in love with Compartes Chocolatier. Compartes’ chocolates have been handmade in Los Angeles, California since 1950. These artisanal confections are made with only the freshest ingredients and never include any artificial flavors or preservatives. From single-origin South America cacao to fresh fruits from the Los Angeles Farmers Markets, Compartes sources the best ingredients to create amazingly rich flavors. From their gooey and decadent caramels, to the best praline nuts and uber-sophisticated chocolate bars, Compartes will not disappoint. Their chic packaging further elevates the whole chocolate experience, giving you eye candy to go along with their sophisticated, sensual flavors. Stop in our Ann Arbor or Old Town Chicago stores and have a taste for yourself!
If you’re looking for something sweet, but want to switch to something healthier, you can’t go wrong with this old fashioned flavor-bomb: the heirloom navel. “The heirloom,” as we call it, is the same fruit that got California’s citrus industry booming. It’s the original or “old line” Washington Navel. Over the years, the citrus industry bred the navel orange to produce more fruit, easier, and faster, but without considering flavor. What’s left is a watered down, uninteresting piece of fruit. It’s no surprise, on the other hand, that heirloom oranges maintain their original punch: the word heirloom means something passed down from generation to generation. In this case, it’s the bright flavors. Heirloom navels are grown using certain farming practices in which growers give special attention to the soil, just like they did when navels were first brought from Brazil to America in the 1800s. The secret is to use only the best sour root stock, but this practice isn’t commonly used anymore because the trees don’t produce fruit as heavily or as quickly as the newer root stocks. Doing things the right way is what gives these heirlooms their amazing taste.
Holiday Tips you can Really Use
Let’s be honest, getting ready for Thanksgiving is always a challenge. Certain celebrities try to sugarcoat by suggesting you play fun music while you prep the bird, have a few drinks while you’re cooking, or maybe even start a few days early by chopping up vegetables and setting out silverware. Who has the time for that?!
Plum Market does. It’s why we are here. And while we enjoy listening to good music around the holidays (we recommend a heavy dose of Motown classics) and having a few drinks with friends and family (responsibly, of course), we have a few tips for the holidays that you can actually use.
First, use good ingredients! The better your ingredients, the less you have to do to them. We pride ourselves on our selection of natural and organic foods not only because we believe they are better for you, but also because they need less preparation. When you eat pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving, for example, top it with fresh whipped cream made with Horizon Organic Heavy Whipping Cream. Just whip it by hand or in a mixer, adding only a few sprinkles of powdered sugar and a drop of organic vanilla extract, and add a dollop right on top of your pie. 16oz containers are 25% OFF through December 31st, so you can enjoy delicious whipped cream all season long.
How about cranberry sauce? For fans of the canned variety, it doesn’t get any easier or more delicious than Woodstock Organic Whole Cranberry Sauce. 15oz cans are 2 for $7, so you’ll have another for the holidays in December!
Here’s another tip: buy local. The holidays are a time for friends and family, but they also mean a lot of traveling. When people come home, they want to be home, so buy them treats that remind them where they are. For our Michigan guests, we recommend Germack pistachios, which is as local and delicious as it gets. The pistachios are the most iconic treat, but we have other Germack items on sale in our Holiday Guide that everyone will enjoy. For our Illinois guests, indulge your friends and yourself on Lucila’s Homemade Alfajores. Six packs of these delicious confections made in Highland Park are on sale for $15.99, a savings of 20% off our regular price.
One last tip: If you want to host a holiday event, but don’t want the stress of preparing all the food, consider hiring Plum Market Catering to handle your event. Our team will work with you to create a custom menu that will be as delicious as it will be unforgettable. Please take a look at our reheating instructions for catered holiday events. For everyone else, please check our Holiday Guide for more great deals!
Win a Chicago Getaway | Perfect for the Holidays
Tuesday November 05th 2013, 4:47 pm
Filed under: Apothecary
,Artisan Cheese & Deli
,Mad Picks | Wine, Beer, & Spirits
,Meat & Seafood
Enter in-store at Plum Market Ann Arbor, Bloomfield, or West Bloomfield.
Official Contest Rules
Taste Me, Do Good*
Thursday September 19th 2013, 5:10 pm
Filed under: Produce
A banana’s a banana right? Wrong! We’re proud to introduce Organic AND Fair Trade bananas to our produce selection. We promise these are the best tasting bananas you’ll ever have and you’ll feel great about supporting the sustainable and fair trade farmers who pick them.
Interrupcion* works with family farmers to ensure the protection of our earth, employing sustainable agricultural practices and organic and biodynamic farming methods. All of our products are all produced with the highest levels of food-safety. We eliminate the use of harmful chemicals and GMOs, and we safeguard our land and water resources for future harvests and generations.
Video about TMDG Bananas
TASTE ME*: Enjoy the flavors of fresh, nutritious produce grown the way Mother Nature intended. Our hand-selected fruits and vegetables come to you directly from family farms and cooperatives throughout the America’s.
DO GOOD*: Make a difference in the lives of families, communities, and our environment. We guarantee fair wages and safe, dignified working conditions. Every time you buy a Taste Me Do Good* product, you generate a small social premium that goes directly back to farm-workers and their communities to invest in much needed health, education, and other urgent community projects.
When you buy a Taste Me Do Good* product you’re:
choosing a healthy and nutritious option
participating positively with farmers, workers, and communities
supporting sustainable agriculture
growing a healthy and nutritious food system.
Pick up a bunch next time you’re in Plum Market and let us know what you think of Taste Me Do Good bananas!
Back to School With Taste
We’re hooking you up with Back to School Tips, Recipes, and Tastefest Events!
Don’t miss our Back to School Tastefests coming up in Old Town and West Bloomfield! Check out these kid-friendly recipes, compliments of our Executive Chef, Randy Weed:
Baked Sweet Potato Tots
Makes 24 tots
1 lb sweet potatoes
1/4 cup Bobs brown rice flour
1 tsp kosher salt
2 eggs beaten
2 cups Panko bread Crumbs
Safflower oil in a spritzer, or pan release spray
- Boil a large pot of water & preheat oven to 375.
- Add the potatoes to the water and boil for 20 minutes.
- Remove from the water and allow to cool.
- Once cool enough to handle, peel the potatoes.
- Shred the peeled potatoes with a box grater.
- Add the grated sweet potatoes to a large bowl with the flour and salt. Combine well.
- Roll and squish the potatoes into tot shapes.
- Place tot in egg wash, then bread crumbs, shaking off excess, then
- Place them on a greased baking sheet and into a 375° oven for 30 minutes.
Serve immediately, a good dipping sauce can be made with non- fat yogurt, pinch of cinnamon, pinch of ground coriander, teaspoon of honey, and a little fresh lime juice.
Organic Mango, Banana, & Strawberry “K-Bobs”
Makes 8 “k-Bobs”
2 ea. Organic Banana, peeled, cut into 1 inch sections
1 ea. Organic mango, ripe, peeled, pit removed, cut in to 1 inch cubes
16 Organic strawberries, washed, stem removed
8 each 5” bamboo skewers
2 Tbsp. clover Honey
1 Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice (1/2 a lemon)
Include other fruit varieties as desired. Always make sure the fruit is washed before starting any preparation. Place all the cut fruit in a large bowl with honey and lemon juice. Lightly toss to get all the pieces of fruit coated. Build fruit on skewers and arrange on platter and serve immediately, drizzle juice over “k-bobs,” can be kept under refrigeration for a few hours.
Turkey Quinoa Meat balls with Citrus BBQ sauce
Makes 24 meat balls
1 lbs. Ground Turkey
1/2 cups. Cooked Quinoa
1 tbsp. Minced garlic
1 tbsp. Soy sauce
Pinch Dried Oregano
Pinch Dried Thyme
½ cup Bob’s brown rice flour
Mix together all ingredients until well combined. Refrigerate for one hour. Form mix into balls. (Trick: rub a little oil in your hands before forming balls to get a smooth sphere shape). If the mix is to loose, add a little more rice flour to stabilize. Place balls on parchment lined sheet pan and bake in 350 degree oven, turn them every few minutes, they will take about 15 minutes to cook.
2 cups of your favorite BBQ sauce (I prefer all natural–avoid high fructose corn syrup.)
2 tbsp. Orange Juice
1 tbsp. lime juice
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
Mix all the ingredients together and coat the hot meatballs, serve immediately.
Grown in Michigan
Tuesday July 09th 2013, 6:29 pm
Filed under: Produce
We have Michigan green beans from Sunny Brooke Farms in Berrien Springs. Sunny Brooke Farms grow crisp and delicious green beans and are one of the many farms in Michigan that grow green beans and they want to be able to provide the most fresh green beans right from their farm to your table.
We also have Michigan cherries from Leo Dietrich and Sons. Leo Dietrich and Sons has been serving Michigan for more than 150 years and now works with more than 500 acres of land along the west coast of Lake Michigan. The farm was established in 1853 and has always been a family-owned and operated business. Starting with an 80-acre plot and a one-family farm, Dietrich & Sons has grown and spread their harvest statewide.
Now, That’s Refreshing!
In a move of genius, the folks at Cheribundi decided to infuse fresh brewed tea with just-pressed tart cherries to create a beverage that is truly refreshing. Cheribundi’s Tea Refresh comes in black, green, jasmine, and rooibos tea, all infused with the bright taste of tart cherries (healthful phytonutrients and anthocyanins included!).Whichever flavor you choose, Cheribundi Tea Refresh is the perfect way to refresh your day!