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blog Category: Produce

Winter Citrus

posted on February 22nd, 2017 by Lauren Murphy

There is a lot to love about winter in California, but our very favorite thing is the abundance of fresh and delicious Winter Citrus: sweet Sumo mandarins, bright Persian limes and everything in between. Add these ripe citruses to your drinks, salads, and or enjoy on their own! NAVEL ORANGES Navel oranges are the happy little “belly-button” oranges you’ll find in our produce section when the weather cools. Pretty much everyone agrees that navel oranges are the best and most beloved of all: they’re sweet, seedless and can be peeled and segmented easily by even the littlest hands. In season: November through May At peak: January through March Produce Guru tip: Green-tinged oranges are ripe and still taste sweet (it’s just the chlorophyll helping protect the orange from sunburn!).   VALENCIA ORANGES Though Valencias start coming into our store in February, they’re actually a summer orange, and as the “orange-juice orange,” they’re the most… Read More

The Paleo Diet

posted on February 15th, 2017 by Lauren Murphy

You may have heard about the Paleo diet or know someone who follows it. This diet is inspired by our ancestors and how they used to consume their meals with clean food, free from additives with nothing processed or not found in nature. With Paleo, there is no calorie counting or portion control (unless you are trying to lose weight then you should limit the amount of fruits and nuts you eat or just enjoy them as snacks). Acceptable foods on the Paleo diet: Meat (grass-fed), poultry, fish, eggs Vegetables & sweet potatoes/yams Fruits Nuts Natural oils (olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil) Foods Paleo discourages: Dairy (milk, cheese, yogurt) Grains (no rice, pasta, barley) Grain-fed meats Sugar Legumes (peanuts, kidney beans) Sodas & packaged juices   Read More

New Year, New Flavors

posted on January 4th, 2017 by Lauren Murphy

Spice things up this year by bringing new flavors to your favorite meals. Not only do spices add extra flavor to your meal, they each have their own benefits. Turmeric: Try it in: soups and smoothies Flavor profile: Peppery Benefits: Anti-inflammatory, natural pain reliever Cumin: Try it in: vinaigrettes Flavor profile: Smoky Benefits: Rich in iron, boosts immunity Tarragon: Try it in: mac ‘n’ cheese Flavor profile: Similar to basil or anise Benefits: Rich in Vitamin A, C, and B-6.   Read More

Holiday Bourbon Cherries

posted on December 22nd, 2016 by Lauren Murphy

A jar of these cherries makes a wonderful holiday gift. They are a delicious addition to any festive cocktail and are wonderful served over a bowl of vanilla ice cream! 4 cups fresh Chilean cherries, left whole with stems intact one cinnamon stick per jar 1 1/2 -2 cups Bourbon ½ cup genuine maple syrup Zest of one orange, peeled into long, curling strips Tightly pack your little gift jars with cherries and a cinnamon stick. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine bourbon, maple syrup and zest of one orange. Bring to a simmer and stir to integrate the ingredients. Pour hot bourbon mixture into each jar fully submerging the cherries. (If you find yourself in need of a little extra liquid, heat a little extra bourbon to top it off.) Cover each jar and keep it on the counter for 24 hours at room temp allowing the cherries to cure. Transfer jars to the refrigerator until use. The flavors will only deepen over time. Keep refrigerated and use within 1 month Read More

It’s Pumpkin Time

posted on October 4th, 2016 by John Savidan

Fall is in the air and that can only mean one thing… pumpkin time!  What is great about pumpkin time is all the decorating you can do with a full line up of fall harvest décor items you can find at your local Bristol Farms. This year’s offering includes: carving pumpkins, mini pumpkins (orange and white), gourds, ornamental corn and the list goes on and on! Pumpkins are so versatile these days that not only are they great for carving and decorating, they are also great to make your favorite fall pumpkin dish (can’t beat a homemade pumpkin pie!).  All of our pumpkins are grown locally here in California where they are pampered in the warm days and cool nights of Northern California!  Make sure to come visit us today before it’s too late… Halloween is almost here! Read More

Sweet, Crisp New Crop Apples

posted on September 9th, 2016 by John Savidan

Cooler days, earlier sunsets, and New Crop Apples are all sure signs that fall is just around the corner. Loads of sweet, crisp new crop apples have been arriving in store and in a wide variety to choose from. They run the gamut from tart to sweet and can be enjoyed both out of hand and in sweet and savory recipes. So what exactly is a new crop apple? In a basic explanation, new crops are the freshest apple you will taste all year long. As opposed to storage apples, which are brought to market all year long, new crop apples start coming off trees in August and are brought in fresh to stores through November, or until the first frost. New crops are your guarantee for enjoying an apple that has just been picked from the orchard. Enjoy all the new crop apples while you can for that unbeatable fresh crunch and flavor. Below are a few of the varieties we are offering in store: Gala Apples - Crisp, juicy, and sweet, Gala apples are perfect for snacking or enjoying with wine and… Read More

Earthy & Colorful Heirloom Tomatoes

posted on August 30th, 2016 by Keith Tsuchiyama

Heirloom tomatoes are gorgeous in an array of colors, shapes, and sizes, and offer the most "real" tomato-ey flavor of any tomato on the market. The secret is the seed which is "breed true", unlike hybrid tomato plants that produce plastic flesh-type flavorless varieties. So what determines an heirloom variety? Heirloom tomatoes are classified in four categories: Commercial Heirlooms: Open-pollinated varieties introduced before 1940, or tomato varieties more than 50 years in circulation. Family Heirlooms: Seeds that have been passed down for several generations through a family. Created Heirlooms: Crossing two known parents and dehybridizing the resulting seeds for as many years or generations it takes to eliminate the undesirable characteristics and stabilize the desired characteristics. This process can take as many as 8 years or more. Mystery Heirlooms: Varieties that are a product of natural cross-pollination of other heirloom varieties. Heirlooms are… Read More

Great Grapes! A Sweet Recipe for Labor Day

posted on August 30th, 2016 by John Savidan

It’s always a great time to gather family and friends together, and for your Labor Day celebrations consider a new dish with a secret ingredient:  grapes from California.  Fresh grapes are refreshing on their own, of course – pretty much anytime, anywhere.  But they are a versatile ingredient too.  Here's one of our favorite recipes incorporating sweet grapes. Give it a try at your holiday soiree and then bask in the compliments. Shrimp Orzo and Grape Salad When it’s too hot to cook, toss up this filling summer salad of orzo, grapes, and shrimp with a mustard-dill dressing for dinner or as a side. Ingredients: 2 cups cooked, drained orzo pasta 2 cups California seedless grapes 8 ounces small cooked peeled shrimp 1 cup cucumbers, seeded, diced 1/4 cup green pepper, diced 1/2 teaspoon each salt and dried dill weed 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper Mustard-Dill Dressing 1/4 cup white wine vinegar 1 tablespoon each olive oil, dijon-style mustard and… Read More

Hatch Chile Season is Heating Up!

posted on August 8th, 2016 by John Savidan

It’s getting hot in here! Get ready for Hatch Chile Season. Hatch chiles are only here once a year—in August and September—and that’s why you might find us Hatch-heads going a little nuts. Grown exclusively in the Land of Enchantment (New Mexico), Hatch chiles have a reputation among foodies as the best peppers grown in the U.S. and some people say the world. The Hatch chile has the same shape as its Anaheim cousin, but has firmer flesh and a greater range of flavor, from mild to medium. It’s that strong New Mexico sun, those cool nights, and the mineral-rich soil that makes the flavor so distinct. Hatches are hardly ever eaten raw; it’s when they’re roasted that the smoky richness and depth of flavor really shine. If you buy them fresh, we recommend roasting over an open flame to get the absolute best flavor possible. Once roasted, they're easy to seed and make a great Southwesterny addition to almost any dish. Hatches have a short harvest season—just six weeks! So… Read More

Your Summer Secret Weapon: Peaches on the Grill

posted on July 8th, 2016 by John Savidan

It’s not really summer if you’re not firing up the grill, and lucky for you there’s some seriously great meat on special to officially kick off summertime parties. And to finish things off sweetly, we have a secret tip for something special: grilled peaches. When you grill peaches (or other stone fruits), you perform a kind of magic. The heat of the grill makes the natural sugars caramelize, creating a new sweet and smoky flavor that will make you an instant fan. And you don’t have to serve the peaches warm to get the full flavor impact. Grill them up in advance, pop them in the fridge, and serve when you’re ready. And though you can use the grilled peaches in an endless variety of ways, some of our favorites are the simplest: Just top with whipped cream, Mascarpone cheese, cinnamon, chopped nuts, honey, or all of the above! How to Grill Fruit Our favorites for grilling: Peaches (of course!), nectarines, bananas, pineapple, strawberries, and watermelon 1. Cut the fruit so… Read More

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