Suzanne Holt

Norwex
Senior Vice President Sales Leader
Independent Sales Consultant

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Three Tips on Finding Fresh Food at Your Local Farmers Market

Farmers Market signThis is Part Three in the “Summer in the Kitchen” series

Part of living a healthier lifestyle involves eating food that is grown by you, or grown locally.  While garden space may be at a premium in certain areas (like the Twin Cities Metro in Minnesota where we live), many places still do have places where farmers can display their wares.  Over the past decade according to official records, the number of Farmers Markets have quadrupled across the United States.  People are showing with their wallets that buying local is important to them.  Being able to buy your produce directly from those growing the food is definitely a wonderful opportunity.

Before you run right out to the nearest Farmers Market, there are three things that you may want to know:

Farmers Market Flea MarketFirst of all, farmers markets area not always just about the food.  In fact the larger ones may be just as much “flea markets” as “farmers markets.”  Acquiring great finds is always a possibility, but they may not be of the food variety.  One Saturday I arrived at the end, and I was a bit amazed at all of the produce I did not find.Farmers Market Jellies

Second, a list of ingredients may not be forthcoming.  That scrumptious looking jar of jam may be made from frozen berries.  As pineapples and mangoes are not readily grown in the Midwest, you can probably assume that type of jelly involved some type of can or purchased produce.  Just because it is at Farmers Market does not mean that all of the contents in the food is homegrown.  Of course, I would take a jar of homemade jelly over store-bought any day, but if you are into only natural foods, you would probably be better off buying the produce and making the jelly yourself.

Also, just in case you were also wondering, The Kitchn explains the differences between jelly, jam, preserves, marmalade, conserves and fruit butters.  I must admit that I am not especially cultured as I had never even heard of conserves before.  My favorite type is still strawberry-jalapeno jelly- a type you do often find at Farmer’s Markets.

Farmers Market Pie

This can also make a difference in baked goods.  Especially those with food allergies need to know who they are purchasing from.  Unless the baker understands and follows the principles to avoid cross contamination, they could be inadvertently be adding sugar or gluten to the prepared food item.

Farmers Market root vegetablesThird, when buying produce, be sure to ask questions to make sure you are getting what you think you are.  Just because produce is being sold at a farmers market, you can’t always assume that fruit or vegetable is organic or even naturally grown.  Gardeners come in as many varieties as what they grow.

Do a little research beforehand to determine just which fruits and vegetables you should try to buy at the market.  According to Organic Gardening, buying onions locally is always a good idea.  They also list seven other besTomatoest foods that one should strive to buy at their area farmers markets.

When I shopped at the Farmers Market last week, I found HUGE tomatoes that were over one pound.  I also found fresh cilantro, chives and green onions.  I have learned that if I store fresh herbs like cilantro in a glass of water in my fridge that they last SO much longer.

What do tomatoes, cilantro and onions mean together?  FRESH SALSA!

Produce Garden Salsa

I wasn’t able to find everything I needed for the salsa at the farmers market, so I had to make a quick trip to the grocery store as well.  One essential ingredient in our salsa is jalapeno peppers, and we also use lemon or lime juice.  Not surprisingly, they were fresh out of fresh citrus at our market.  (I am guessing that maybe you can only find those at Florida Markets).  Using the ingredients from the farmers market with the few store-bought items still made for an excellent homemade salsa.  Here is our favorite basic salsa recipe!  I did make a few adaptations due to the ingredients that I had on hand – I will note those at the end.

Kyle’s Salsa
16-20 cored tomatoes
2 yellow onions
2 handfuls of cilantro
1-2 jalapeños
Lemon juice
Salt
Puree half of the ingrdients. Pluse the remaining half individually: tomatoes first, then the onion/cilantro and jalepeño. You will want to experiment to find your desired consistency. This yields about an ice cream bucket full of salsa.
 Cooking Tips
We like to use a variety of tomatoes – a beefier kind and usually Romas as well.

Note: I made a smaller batch, so I hand diced everything.  I also used green onions instead of yellow since that was what I could purchase fresh.

Farmers Market Tents

Next time you see these tents in your neighborhood, you may just want to take the time to stop.  Your table and your tummy will thank you!

Do you already shop local or at a Farmers Market?  Where’s your favorite, and what is top on your “must buy” list?

~ Suzanne

Norwex BacLock™ is the New Antibac

BacLockRecently, Norwex made the change from Antibac to BacLock™protection!

Don’t worry though; our microfiber cloths have not changed their magical silver abilities, just a new name for it! This is very exciting for the company because this trademark is specific for Norwex, so you can’t find it anywhere else! This means that now the word “BacLock™” will appear in place of “Antibac” on the Norwex products. Again, the quality and properties of the products have not changed.

Why BacLock™? Think about it: The self-cleaning micro silver in our cloths goes to work with self purification properties against mold, fungi, and bacterial odor within 24 hours so that it is ready to use again.  Amazing!!

The high quality Norwex microfiber cloths picks up EVERYTHING in its path, allowing the micro silver to then go to work in the cloth. There is nothing harmful about the BacLock™ feature, as it is environmentally friendly and SAFE for your family to use!

Let’s key in on some of Norwex’s top selling BacLock™ products!  The Enviro Cloth, Window Cloth, and Dusting Mitt are three of our top selling items!!  Those three items can replace almost all of the cleaners you have around your house.  Read more about it HERE.

Needless to say, BacLock™ is ESSENTIAL for safe and effective household cleaning, as each of our products has a specific purpose around the home. Instead of choosing chemical infused and toxic cleaners around your house, use the BacLock™ option and save time, money and your health! Since Norwex is family friendly, get your spouse and kids involved! Make daily chores into clean up races!

All you need is water and the cloth, the BacLock™ will do the rest!

Want to learn more?  CONTACT ME today; I’d love to chat!

~ Suzanne

Ins and Outs of Organic and Natural Food

This is Part 2 in the “Summer in the Kitchen” series.

Natural Apple SauceLooking for some “ins and outs” of the whole “organic” and “natural food” world?  This has been a journey for my family; one that we continue on each and every day.

Let’s start by talking about labeling.  Labeling can be such an interesting thing.  Many of the words we come to rely on like ‘all natural‘ aren’t regulated words, so their meanings can really vary.  Reading food labels can be an amusing pastime.  Seeing that a jar of applesauce is “naturally fat-free” does not mean much since really the only way to add fat to that jar would be to add oil.  I like my applesauce with a bit of cinnamon & sugar not with Canola.

Natural Flavors:”  That phrase can be seen on a box of fruit snacks that have at one time found their way in and out of our cupboard.  What I found was that I would find the word “juice” when reading the ingredient list.  Yet, often I would also see corn syrup on top of the list as well.  That’s not what I would personally call “natural” when it comes to snacks for my children.  Unfortunately for them, that means they rarely get things like ‘fruit snacks’ from a box anymore.  I heard grumbling about it for the first month or two, but I’ve found now that they don’t even miss those type of treats.  They are much happier with a “natural” apple or pear.  Continue reading

Norwex has Specialty Cleaners for YOUR Tough Jobs

Our multi-purpose Norwex Microfiber with just water can clean over 90% of your home.  However, I’m often asked what to do with those jobs that need a little extra power.  Norwex has specialized cleaners for just that!

Depending on their water type, many of my clients struggle with hard water deposits and kitchen or bathroom scum. Norwex has specific cleaners for those exact dilemmas.

Power Cleaning

 

DeScaler is a spray enzyme product to battle tough stuck on grime and hard water deposits, usually in the bathroom.  Just spray the solution, let sit for ten minutes while the enzymes go to work, then wipe away with an Enviro Cloth.  The Norwex DeScaler should not be used on natural stone or tile.  You can read additional information on the DeScaler HERE. Continue reading

Grilling 101: Before, During and After: Success from Start to Finish

This is Part One in the “Summer in the Kitchen” series

Grill is Open

Are hot dogs, hamburgers or (better yet) steaks a part of your meal plan the next few days?

71% of all Americans will probably be grilling out this July 4th, according to the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association, so your upcoming dining choices are not too surprising.  Perhaps you are new to grilling and want to start preparing your food this way more often.  Here are three tips that will help you from start to finish!

Before the big day: CHOOSING A GRILL:

This is an obvious place to start. While stove top and indoor varieties are now available, I think true grilling involves the great outdoors.  Two main outdoor grill varieties exist.  Read on to learn the pro’s and con’s of both! Continue reading