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Fresh Farms Niles

Fresh Farms Niles
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  • Post #211 - July 6th, 2015, 3:18 pm
    Post #211 - July 6th, 2015, 3:18 pm Post #211 - July 6th, 2015, 3:18 pm
    Dave148 wrote:PSA - the brand new deli department 2.0 that's been hiding behind the blue tarps for the past many months is now open. They moved the freaking large selection of feta cheese and olives over to the new department. The rest of the new department consists of prepared hot foods. I didn't have time to investigate further as I was in a bit of a hurry today. The old section of the deli case that had the feta and olives is now occupied by additional meaty deli delights. Fresh Farms constantly amazes me.


    Also, many prepared salads. I, perhaps alone, still believe the Wheeling outlet better, at least as it comes to this area. There is a lot of overlap in the type of prepared dishes and the salads, but overall, my experiences at Wheeling, the prepared meats and veg just looked better--this is based solely on looks as I did not buy any meats the other day. Also, Niles does not have as many things either, all the Russian chicken patties and stuffed pancakes and six types of salmon. Maybe give it some time.

    I will say this, I ended up with some really good prepared foods from Niles on Saturday. It did not come from the new, old bakery area. Rather, just past the deli, just past the olives, is a case with rotisserie chicken and other things. There were a few things like "Grandma's Feta pie" and whole wheat cheese cake. We got two items. One was a, well how to describe it, think a giant kolacky, the folded kind, with feta cheese and tomatoes; the dough was grainy, short I suppose, but not flaky like filo, moister than a pizza dough though. The other thing, the cake, was round layers of filo made into a pie shell and then stuffed with a mix of cheese and whole wheat flour (and I got to imagine eggs too). This texture reminded me of, like one of those Southern broccoli casseroles. Both were exceedingly good, and the kicker: one buck each. Fine editions for your holiday Turkish breakfast.
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #212 - July 14th, 2015, 11:18 am
    Post #212 - July 14th, 2015, 11:18 am Post #212 - July 14th, 2015, 11:18 am
    As the new prepared food section evolves, other stuff is moving around in the store. At the moment, all of the cold salads and pre-made sandwiches are now in the cold case by the hot prepared foods. The cold cases by the bakery are currently filled with boxed cakes, where the sandwiches and cold salads were.

    The bad aspect of this is that the variety of cold prepared veggies/salads is seriously diminished. My much beloved "French" eggplant salad is nowhere to be seen. There used to be several varieties of pickled mushrooms, now there's only one. There is only one type of eggplant spread [there used to be 3 or 4]. There is only one kind of beet salad [the one I liked with the prunes & walnuts is gone]. I don't think there were any seaweed salads. I can't do a complete inventory in my head, but I think it's maybe 1/3 of the selection that was there before.

    :cry:

    They're changing that place around all the time, so I'm hoping the salad selection will expand again as people ask where their favorites went.

    Giovanna
    =o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=o=

    "Enjoy every sandwich."

    -Warren Zevon
  • Post #213 - July 14th, 2015, 3:22 pm
    Post #213 - July 14th, 2015, 3:22 pm Post #213 - July 14th, 2015, 3:22 pm
    Giovanna wrote:As the new prepared food section evolves, other stuff is moving around in the store. At the moment, all of the cold salads and pre-made sandwiches are now in the cold case by the hot prepared foods. The cold cases by the bakery are currently filled with boxed cakes, where the sandwiches and cold salads were.

    The bad aspect of this is that the variety of cold prepared veggies/salads is seriously diminished. My much beloved "French" eggplant salad is nowhere to be seen. There used to be several varieties of pickled mushrooms, now there's only one. There is only one type of eggplant spread [there used to be 3 or 4]. There is only one kind of beet salad [the one I liked with the prunes & walnuts is gone]. I don't think there were any seaweed salads. I can't do a complete inventory in my head, but I think it's maybe 1/3 of the selection that was there before.

    :cry:

    They're changing that place around all the time, so I'm hoping the salad selection will expand again as people ask where their favorites went.

    Giovanna


    I was there last Saturday and bought a few things in the deli/salad section. I cannot say exactly all that they hand, but I know they specifically had seaweed salad because my wife commented on it. I thought there were a good amount of salads overall. I still think the hot food offerings are not as well kept or as generally well cooked as Wheeling, although this Greek style stewed cauliflower really has me wanting to try said recipe when I find some cauliflower in my CSA box.

    On the other hand, they did not have either of the pies I have purchased the week before :(
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #214 - July 15th, 2015, 10:05 am
    Post #214 - July 15th, 2015, 10:05 am Post #214 - July 15th, 2015, 10:05 am
    Vital Information wrote:
    Giovanna wrote:As the new prepared food section evolves, other stuff is moving around in the store. At the moment, all of the cold salads and pre-made sandwiches are now in the cold case by the hot prepared foods. The cold cases by the bakery are currently filled with boxed cakes, where the sandwiches and cold salads were.

    The bad aspect of this is that the variety of cold prepared veggies/salads is seriously diminished. My much beloved "French" eggplant salad is nowhere to be seen. There used to be several varieties of pickled mushrooms, now there's only one. There is only one type of eggplant spread [there used to be 3 or 4]. There is only one kind of beet salad [the one I liked with the prunes & walnuts is gone]. I don't think there were any seaweed salads. I can't do a complete inventory in my head, but I think it's maybe 1/3 of the selection that was there before.

    :cry:

    They're changing that place around all the time, so I'm hoping the salad selection will expand again as people ask where their favorites went.

    Giovanna


    I was there last Saturday and bought a few things in the deli/salad section. I cannot say exactly all that they hand, but I know they specifically had seaweed salad because my wife commented on it. I thought there were a good amount of salads overall. I still think the hot food offerings are not as well kept or as generally well cooked as Wheeling, although this Greek style stewed cauliflower really has me wanting to try said recipe when I find some cauliflower in my CSA box.

    On the other hand, they did not have either of the pies I have purchased the week before :(

    It's their intermittent reinforcement that keeps us coming back week after week. What new thing will be there? Will our old favorites still be on the shelf?
  • Post #215 - July 15th, 2015, 10:19 am
    Post #215 - July 15th, 2015, 10:19 am Post #215 - July 15th, 2015, 10:19 am
    One of my favorite stops in FF is the open freezer cases opposite the dairy section. There's always something new (usually imported) delicacy that I've never heard of and I'm willing to give it a try.
    "At a formal dinner party, the person nearest death should always be seated closest to the bathroom." George Carlin
  • Post #216 - July 8th, 2018, 11:40 am
    Post #216 - July 8th, 2018, 11:40 am Post #216 - July 8th, 2018, 11:40 am
    Today while shopping I had to wait when I decided after looking by, over, and through the display case that perhaps it was time to try something. The display has sliding doors so if someone is getting something on the left you cannot simultaneously choose something on the right.

    A woman apologized as she picked a slew of almond croissants the size of Shaq’s hand. I said I could wait, I was confident my selections were not worth it. She stopped with a double-take and looked at me blankly. Then she resumed saying she was buying for 2 households. When she was done she looked me dead in the eyes with a smile and apologized again. Her accent suggested her first language was perhaps eastern European. I told her she was fine.

    This time I looked again, at the case trying to discern what this woman was going on about, I mean grocery store pastry in Chicagoland seemed odd to me. Then I spied this sunburst almost cartoonish warm orange glow that suggested tree-riped fruit picked while the sun beat warmly on it. I grabbed it and an apple danish. They were huge!

    I tore a piece of pastry off of the apple one and it shattered. My hand and bag we're covered with flaky pastry sans filling. I ate it anyhow as I meandered past the sun-kissed twin girls in dresses with their hair in fat sandy-colored curly haired plaits while their mum quickly placed things on the conveyor belt, and their dad swiftly reached to the bottom shelf of their full basket while the youngest, junior, pleaded for his mum by calling her name in an almost wail, ”Maaaaaa” while sitting in the seated portion of the basket. I know it all happened in a moment but I was struck watching this family doing this thing I recall all families doing when I was a kidlet but rarely see today. It was sweet.

    But the pastry in my mouth was a shock. It was delicious.

    And once I checked out I put my groceries in the car and then reached for the apricot danish. It does not fit in my hand comfortably, and when I bit into it there was an audible crunch as the pastry flaked away and the center tasted tart and sweet, like the baker had plucked it from the tree and wanted the eater to have that same experience in the pastry itself. https://instagram.com/p/Bk-dyZ-g-jU/
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening
  • Post #217 - July 8th, 2018, 11:50 am
    Post #217 - July 8th, 2018, 11:50 am Post #217 - July 8th, 2018, 11:50 am
    pairs4life wrote:I know it all happened in a moment but I was struck watching this family doing this thing I recall all families doing when I was a kidlet but rarely see today. It was sweet.
    Lovely post, lovely person.
    Sauce on the side, always, implied, axiomatic..........never a doubt, BBQ sauce without.

    Low & Slow
  • Post #218 - July 8th, 2018, 12:45 pm
    Post #218 - July 8th, 2018, 12:45 pm Post #218 - July 8th, 2018, 12:45 pm
    As has been mentioned above, Fresh Farms can also be a good source of olive oil. I buy in 3 litre containers and pour into a dispenser to use a bit at a time. FF usually has a wide array of Greek-branded olive oil to choose from. I look at the best by dates and generally pick the ones that are the furthest out (indicating that these are more recently packed/harvested).

    I was there last week and saw this new-to-me brand with fall 2020 best by dates. It has a nice fruity flavor and some pepperiness to it as well (which I believe is associated with freshness). It's on sale for $20 through the end of the month.

    Image
  • Post #219 - July 8th, 2018, 7:57 pm
    Post #219 - July 8th, 2018, 7:57 pm Post #219 - July 8th, 2018, 7:57 pm
    G Wiv wrote:
    pairs4life wrote:I know it all happened in a moment but I was struck watching this family doing this thing I recall all families doing when I was a kidlet but rarely see today. It was sweet.
    Lovely post, lovely person.


    It's so weird when food triggers all of these other important memories and culture about family. That family was at least as sweet as the danish, probably way sweeter.

    Today would have been my father's 88th birthday. That family also conjured up a memory of my father taking us to Piggly Wiggly and talking to the ladies in the bakery/hot food area. They made amazing doughnuts, apple turnovers, apple danish, and oatmeal raisin cookies. My father would get a dozen of all for us. Then he would buy fried chicken, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, then head straight to the produce section for a bunch of fresh fruit and some more vegetables-- almost always green beans, cabbage, more collards, sweet potatoes, onions, peppers, and garlic. Then along the meat section, where for some odd reason only the Welch's half-gallon refrigerated grape juice was kept and grab two of those, they were expensive at $5 a half-gallon, then on for a loaf of bread, well two, raisin bread for him and white or brown bread for everyone else. He would circle back by the fish counter before checkout for head-off shrimp, flounder, and croaker. We ate doughnuts in the store so we were quiet. He then would check out and the groceries were bagged by a young guy. Then placed in the back of our car.

    Thanks for the reminder today.

    EDITED: I guess I saw a lot today at Fresh Farms in Niles.
    Ava-"If you get down and out, just get in the kitchen and bake a cake."- Jean Strickland

    Horto In Urbs- Falling in love with Urban Vegetable Gardening

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