An Observation

April 7, 2011
Jason in Bakery

Jason, Artisan Baker

Over the past year or so I have been noticing something wonderful in the store! It is now common place to see children, with their parents, approach the bread counter and order the bread that they wish with no coaxing from their mom or dad. Not only are they choosing the bread for the day, they are planning entire meals. I am so happy to see this take place. I believe the better educated we are about food, the better choices we make for our health. This is just an observation I thought was kind of neat. So good job parents, keep up the good work.

Beans, beans, the magical fruit . . . ?

April 7, 2011
Jessica

Jessica, Registered Dietitian

Well, more like the magical legumes. While beans are technically a legume fruit, the good news is that you can count them toward your daily vegetable servings — something most of us need to get more of! No matter how you choose to classify legumes, one thing is for sure, they really are magical.

Legume foods include beans, peas, lentils, and soybeans. These magical foods are a great source of low-fat protein, fiber, and vitamins and minerals, like iron, folate, zinc, magnesium, and potassium. The fiber in beans is soluble fiber, which has been shown in studies to help lower total and LDL-blood cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of heart disease. The protein and fiber in beans also helps slow the digestion of meals, so you will stay full longer and won’t experience a rapid spike in blood glucose levels after a meal. Because of this, legumes are a great food for improving blood glucose control in diabetics. Legumes also contain phytochemicals, or “plant chemicals” that may play a role in reducing the risk of different cancers. Continue Reading »

Shingles vaccine is now available at Harmons

April 6, 2011
Phil in Pharmacy

Phil, Pharmacy Manager

We now have the shingles vaccine called Zostavax in stock after being on back order for months.  Anyone who has had chickenpox is at risk for shingles.  The pain from shingles in some cases can continue for years after the rash has gone away.  The vaccine has been recommended for ages 60 and up, but the Food and Drug Administration approved the vaccine for ages 50 to 59 on March 22, 2011.  So, the most current recommendation is to vaccinate patients who are 50 and older.  Zostavax is billable to medicare for seniors and there is a rebate offered by the manufacturer for patients with private insurance (not on medicare, medicaid, or tricare).  Please call your local Harmons pharmacy to find out more about the vaccine and how much it would cost you.  A useful website about shingles and the vaccine is http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/shingles/default.htm.

Get creative with containers

April 5, 2011

Kristie in Floral

Kristie, Floral Manager

Now is a great time to start getting inspired about your outdoor container gardens. I found some inspiration recently for combos and some looks that will most surely define a “look” for all tastes and budgets. I hope this inspires you, as it did me, to create a new look this year. Here are some ideas:

Exterior entries with stairs look great by using the containers traveling up the stairs beginning with short containers at the bottom and continuing to taller containers to reach the top of the stairs. Try a topiary- they are always a good silouhette to view from curbside as they give architectural appeal and represent a clean statement.

Entry ways that are medium to large outside or inside a home really look great with some “first impression” planters by using 2-3 containers together.  The tall container showing taller plants coupled with some trailing plantings that would carry your eye down and over the container to the shorter container that may contain plantings that look great from a birds eye view.  Group them in a cluster for huge impact!

Interior spaces are also a great place to start by decorating with plantings.  A large living room for instance looks very appealing with vertical containers on the floor either planted minimally, or full and lush-  Classic or Modern.

Check out some pictures of combination planters and have fun and get inspired!  A nice rich twist to an exterior entry or interior living space will add some unique textures and colors.

Old Time Traditions

April 2, 2011
Amanda in Floral

Amanda, Floral Designer

Dahlia

Another beautiful day in the blooming garden and still so much to see.

We are going to first stop at the Dahlia, a full and lush flower that looks like the main on a lion with numerous petals, in colors from white to pink and yellows to purples. I even see a few variegated, one color fading into another. Dahlias represent elegance and dignity.

Hypericum

Not all the flowers around us are big blooming blossoms. This takes us to Hypericum, a long tree like stem with little branched off clusters of shiny little berries and green leaves. Hypericum is also known as Coffee Bean and comes in many colors from apple green, salmony peach to dark brown and bright red. Unsure of a meaning, but they have so much character!

The trip through the garden will be short from here on out. We will check in and learn about a few new flowers each time but there are so many other things to talk about besides flower types, so for now we’ll move on.

Will you please go to the dance with me? Check “Yes” or “No”. Continue Reading »

Fresh Cut Fruit

April 1, 2011
Derick in Produce

Derick, Produce Manager

Harmons Fresh Cut Fruit is a quick and healthy option for your spring parties and picnics.  All our fruit is hand selected from our produce department and prepared by our Produce Sous Chefs in store every day!  We have dozens of varieties from cut watermelon to berries and kiwi; sizes range from small single serving sizes to large deluxe party bowls.  We will be happy to help you with your Easter parties with custom party platters as well.  We invite you to come and meet your cut fruit experts working hard to bring you the good life.

Floral Bridal Show at Harmons Orem

April 1, 2011

A grocery store handling the floral needs at your wedding? Yes, actually, we can handle that very well. With our experienced and talented designers at the Harmons Floral Design Center, we can take care of any wedding or formal floral occasion. Come meet the designers, and see what they can create for your special day, at the Bridal Show at Harmons Orem. Our floral designers will be available on Saturday, April 2nd from 11am-2pm to answer all of your questions.

Expanding our knowledge and connections

March 31, 2011

Carrie, Green Team Member

No one knows all the answers or the always the best way to do things. In almost every successful business or life event, it takes a combination of many minds to reach the best solutions. Especially when trying to develop and implement new programs, the ideas, input, and feedback from a variety of positions is imperative. Over the past few years we have started a number of sustainability programs that have stemmed from the collaboration of passionate people making up our Green Team. While the team has thought up some great programs and initiatives, we have also relied on the assistance from our vendor partners, successes and failures of similar programs, ongoing research and the perspective of those outside our industry.

One way we work to increase our knowledge and awareness has been by attending conferences and meetings focused on sustainability education. While we have attended national conferences geared specifically towards the grocery and food industry, there is a wealth of resources right here in Utah that has proven to be very beneficial. A particularly helpful aid for us has been our membership in the Recycling Coalition of Utah. Through our involvement with meetings and activities we have had the opportunity to learn from, and work with, people covering a wide spectrum of interests. From government entities and community organizations to manufacturers and service providers, we have been able to establish relationships and connections with many passionate and knowledgeable people. The more we can learn from these great resources the better we can become at realizing our sustainability goals. Continue Reading »

Kraft’s gluten labeling

March 30, 2011

Dave for Gluten Free

Dave, Gluten Free Advocate

Kraft foods has taken a stance on labeling that the entire industry should copy. They have stated that all ingredients which contain gluten will be listed in parentheses after the gluten containing grain. This kind of full disclosure of ingredients makes life that much easier for someone who is trying to cut gluten out of their diet. The best part about Kraft going in this direction with their labeling standard is that they control 150 different brands.

Follow this link for a list of Kraft’s largest brands
http://www.kraftfoodscompany.com/Brands/largest-brands/index.aspx

How to read Kraft’s labels
Kraft
products made with an ingredient that contains a source of gluten will list that grain source in parentheses after the ingredient in the ingredient line if that is the only source of gluten in the product. This method is used, as necessary, to identify sources of gluten in flavors, modified food starch and other ingredients.

Better with Age

March 29, 2011
TJ in Meat

TJ, Meat Manager

Here at Harmons we have set a standard for offering the highest quality products available. One of these premium products is our exclusive Dry Aged Beef. Unfortunately, I found that most of my customers have yet to be educated on the subject. I will try and shed some light on Dry Aged Beef, and the aging process that culminates in the richest flavor of beef known today.

USDA Prime Black Angus Beef
Only 2% of all cattle will qualify for the prestigious seal called Prime grade. The USDA uses several grades to measure and classify beef. This grading system is based, in part, on the marbling found in the muscle. Prime, Choice, and Select are the top 3 grades that you will see in the marketplace, and Prime is usually experienced only in fine dining.

All Natural Beef: No Antibiotics or Hormones “Never-Ever”
The term “Never-Ever” means the cattle have complied with traceable documentation of being free from antibiotics and hormones for its entire life.

Dry Aged Beef
After the beef has wet aged for at least 7 days, it is then placed in a specialized case where the temperature, humidity, light and air flow are precisely controlled. The dry aging will continue for at least 14 days and no longer than 28 days. During this time the moisture slowly evaporates from the muscle which allows for a more condensed, rich flavor. In the process you will notice a dark outer crust develop, all coming together to help the natural enzymes break down the tough connective muscle tissue, tenderizing it to an unsurpassed level.

With the grilling season almost upon us, there’s no better time than now to experience a Dry Aged steak!