Celebrate Citrus Fest at Central Market January 11-24

So join us January 11-24 for Citrus Fest, when our experts show you how to put a little pow in your chow. We’ll teach you the differences between variegated pink and Meyer lemons and introduce you to kishu and satsuma mandarins. Don’t know what to do with fragrant Buddha’s hand? No worries. We can teach you that too.

From the pith to the peel, citrus fruits – grapefruits, oranges, limes, lemons and beyond – offer powerful flavor and boast some pretty amazing health and mood benefits. Folate, free radical-fighting antioxidants, vitamins and more pack a healthy punch in every bite or sip, and these can improve skin’s elasticity, heart health, even the ability of the body to absorb calcium for healthy bones. Just the scent of citrus can boost energy and lift your mood.

In addition to a mind-blowing array of citrus fruits, we have fresh-squeezed juices at our newly revamped juice bar, sweet and savory recipes featuring citrus, brand-new products in every department (scratch-made limoncello pound cake, marinated chicken breasts in signature flavors like orange honey habanero and ginger orange cookies from Wackym’s Kitchen, to name a few), and special citrus classes in our cooking schools.

Another great idea: try a little grapefruit sorbetto in your champagne or prosecco for an appetizing aperitif. You can buy grapefruit sorbetto at our Gelato Bar. Or try herbal-infused sorbets from local company Savoy, in flavors like orange chamomile or lemon thyme, available in Frozen. For even more great ideas for incorporating citrus into your cooking, check out this recent blog post by Bon Appetit.

Here’s a little citrus primer:

Heirloom Navels
This is the most flavorful navel orange in the house. This grower only uses “old line” Washington navel trees combined with sour and sweet orange rootstock. It’s picked only when it is ready and packed fresh.

Cara Cara Oranges
Discovered in the mid-’70s at La Hacienda de Cara Cara in Venezuela, the Cara Cara has a sweet taste with a spicy tang reminiscent of raspberries and strawberries.

Moro Blood Oranges
Originally from Sicily and common throughout Italy, moro blood oranges are known for their complex raspberry flavor. Moros are generally deep red, almost black inside. This is a great orange for garnish, saucework or fresh eating.

Meyer Lemons
Meyer lemons are favored for their thin, edible rinds and very juicy interior. The flavor is slightly sweeter than traditional lemons without the harsh acidic bite. Recently, Meyers have become very popular with chefs and foodies!

Page Mandarins
One of the best flavored early-season mandarins. Pages are slightly more difficult to peel than other varieties due to their tight-fitting skin. Score the bottom of the fruit to make peeling a breeze.

Satsuma Mandarins
Originally from Satsuma, Japan, these mandarins are the first seedless mandarin of the year. You may have seen them beginning in November. Easy to peel, satsumas are perfect for lunchboxes and snacking. Just pop the little mandarins in the mouth!

Clementines
This mandarin orange is native to China but has been popular in Europe and Africa for more than a century. It’s known throughout the world for its fine, distinctive flavor reminiscent of apricot nectar.

Kishu Mandarins (a Central Market exclusive)
Kishus are small in size but big in flavor. They are grown by a small farmer in the Ojai Valley, considered by many to be the most ideal location in the world for growing citrus.

Australian Finger Limes
Known as the “caviar lime,” its juice vesicles have a surprisingly similar texture and appearance to caviar. Its flavor is tart, slightly sweet and more limey than limes. To eat, slice the lime in half widthwise and squeeze each end. The pulp will slide out of the skin. Finger limes are fantastic for seafood, salads and sauces.

Buddha’s Hand Citron
This ancient variety of citrus has been a popular spiritual offering and gift in Asian cultures for centuries, although its culinary uses are limited. It has virtually no pulp or juice, so it’s often sliced and candied. However, Buddha’s hand is valued for its aromatic rind, used for perfuming rooms. (It’ll last up to two weeks at room temp, leaving a familiar, mild lemon scent.) Plus it’s ornamental, making it a beautiful fruit to incorporate into floral designs.

Ponderosa Lemons
These bumpy, big-as-a-grapefruit, bright yellow citrus fruits are a lemon-citron hybrid. They have the same flavor and acidity as a true lemon, so you can use it as a substitute for lemon in all your favorite recipes. And because the Ponderosa lemon is so big, you can squeeze more juice out of it.

Bergamots
Bergamot is actually an orange that has a tart flavor similar to lemon candy, and it’s used to flavor Earl Grey tea. Bergamot works well as a lemon substitute for tart desserts, or use it to make a glaze for a bundt cake. (Simmer ¼ cup bergamot juice with ¾ cups sugar in a saucepan until slightly reduced. Then cool.) The zest gives fish a tangy zing, and the juice would make a delicious vinaigrette for crab, avocado and frisee salad.

Also look for these citrus varieties:

  • Seville sour oranges
  • Etrog citrons
  • Sweet limes
  • Neapolitan mandarins (a Central Market exclusive!)
  • Kumquats
  • Yuzus
  • Cocktail grapefruit
  • Oro blanco grapefruit

Celebrate Citrus Fest at Central Market January 11-24

So join us January 11-24 for Citrus Fest, when our experts show you how to put a little pow in your chow. We’ll teach you the differences between variegated pink and Meyer lemons and introduce you to kishu and satsuma mandarins. Don’t know what to do with fragrant Buddha’s hand? No worries. We can teach you that too.

From the pith to the peel, citrus fruits – grapefruits, oranges, limes, lemons and beyond – offer powerful flavor and boast some pretty amazing health and mood benefits. Folate, free radical-fighting antioxidants, vitamins and more pack a healthy punch in every bite or sip, and these can improve skin’s elasticity, heart health, even the ability of the body to absorb calcium for healthy bones. Just the scent of citrus can boost energy and lift your mood.

In addition to a mind-blowing array of citrus fruits, we have fresh-squeezed juices at our newly revamped juice bar, sweet and savory recipes featuring citrus, brand-new products in every department (scratch-made limoncello pound cake, marinated chicken breasts in signature flavors like orange honey habanero and ginger orange cookies from Wackym’s Kitchen, to name a few), and special citrus classes in our cooking schools.

Another great idea: try a little grapefruit sorbetto in your champagne or prosecco for an appetizing aperitif. You can buy grapefruit sorbetto at our Gelato Bar. Or try herbal-infused sorbets from local company Savoy, in flavors like orange chamomile or lemon thyme, available in Frozen. For even more great ideas for incorporating citrus into your cooking, check out this recent blog post by Bon Appetit.

Here’s a little citrus primer:

Heirloom Navels
This is the most flavorful navel orange in the house. This grower only uses “old line” Washington navel trees combined with sour and sweet orange rootstock. It’s picked only when it is ready and packed fresh.

Cara Cara Oranges
Discovered in the mid-’70s at La Hacienda de Cara Cara in Venezuela, the Cara Cara has a sweet taste with a spicy tang reminiscent of raspberries and strawberries.

Moro Blood Oranges
Originally from Sicily and common throughout Italy, moro blood oranges are known for their complex raspberry flavor. Moros are generally deep red, almost black inside. This is a great orange for garnish, saucework or fresh eating.

Meyer Lemons
Meyer lemons are favored for their thin, edible rinds and very juicy interior. The flavor is slightly sweeter than traditional lemons without the harsh acidic bite. Recently, Meyers have become very popular with chefs and foodies!

Page Mandarins
One of the best flavored early-season mandarins. Pages are slightly more difficult to peel than other varieties due to their tight-fitting skin. Score the bottom of the fruit to make peeling a breeze.

Satsuma Mandarins
Originally from Satsuma, Japan, these mandarins are the first seedless mandarin of the year. You may have seen them beginning in November. Easy to peel, satsumas are perfect for lunchboxes and snacking. Just pop the little mandarins in the mouth!

Clementines
This mandarin orange is native to China but has been popular in Europe and Africa for more than a century. It’s known throughout the world for its fine, distinctive flavor reminiscent of apricot nectar.

Kishu Mandarins (a Central Market exclusive)
Kishus are small in size but big in flavor. They are grown by a small farmer in the Ojai Valley, considered by many to be the most ideal location in the world for growing citrus.

Australian Finger Limes
Known as the “caviar lime,” its juice vesicles have a surprisingly similar texture and appearance to caviar. Its flavor is tart, slightly sweet and more limey than limes. To eat, slice the lime in half widthwise and squeeze each end. The pulp will slide out of the skin. Finger limes are fantastic for seafood, salads and sauces.

Buddha’s Hand Citron
This ancient variety of citrus has been a popular spiritual offering and gift in Asian cultures for centuries, although its culinary uses are limited. It has virtually no pulp or juice, so it’s often sliced and candied. However, Buddha’s hand is valued for its aromatic rind, used for perfuming rooms. (It’ll last up to two weeks at room temp, leaving a familiar, mild lemon scent.) Plus it’s ornamental, making it a beautiful fruit to incorporate into floral designs.

Ponderosa Lemons
These bumpy, big-as-a-grapefruit, bright yellow citrus fruits are a lemon-citron hybrid. They have the same flavor and acidity as a true lemon, so you can use it as a substitute for lemon in all your favorite recipes. And because the Ponderosa lemon is so big, you can squeeze more juice out of it.

Bergamots
Bergamot is actually an orange that has a tart flavor similar to lemon candy, and it’s used to flavor Earl Grey tea. Bergamot works well as a lemon substitute for tart desserts, or use it to make a glaze for a bundt cake. (Simmer ¼ cup bergamot juice with ¾ cups sugar in a saucepan until slightly reduced. Then cool.) The zest gives fish a tangy zing, and the juice would make a delicious vinaigrette for crab, avocado and frisee salad.

Also look for these citrus varieties:

  • Seville sour oranges
  • Etrog citrons
  • Sweet limes
  • Neapolitan mandarins (a Central Market exclusive!)
  • Kumquats
  • Yuzus
  • Cocktail grapefruit
  • Oro blanco grapefruit

New in Stores: Central Market All Natural Virginia Peanuts and Mixed Nuts

Okay. So they’re big. What else makes them great? For starters, we begin with the top 2 percent of the peanut crop. Then we water blanch them and oil roast them, which produces unique and unusual blisters on the peanuts. These blisters give our peanuts a crisp, crunchy taste.

Honey roasted your flavor? This variety is roasted in all-natural peanut oil after they are coated with pure honey, evaporated cane juice and a pinch of salt. The result is the perfect honey roasted peanut, natch.

Looking for more than just peanuts? Try our new deluxe mixed nuts, an eclectic collection of nuts from all over the world: California almonds, Southern pecans, Indian cashews, Brazil nuts and Virginia peanuts blended together with a few shelled pistachios. Only the finest grade and quality nuts are selected for this mix.

New in Stores: Central Market All Natural Virginia Peanuts and Mixed Nuts

Okay. So they’re big. What else makes them great? For starters, we begin with the top 2 percent of the peanut crop. Then we water blanch them and oil roast them, which produces unique and unusual blisters on the peanuts. These blisters give our peanuts a crisp, crunchy taste.

Honey roasted your flavor? This variety is roasted in all-natural peanut oil after they are coated with pure honey, evaporated cane juice and a pinch of salt. The result is the perfect honey roasted peanut, natch.

Looking for more than just peanuts? Try our new deluxe mixed nuts, an eclectic collection of nuts from all over the world: California almonds, Southern pecans, Indian cashews, Brazil nuts and Virginia peanuts blended together with a few shelled pistachios. Only the finest grade and quality nuts are selected for this mix.

Chozen Ice Cream Has Chutzpah

All Chozen ice creams are certified kosher and available exclusively at Central Market. Read on for a sneak peek at the flavors. And, now until December 27, save $1 on all varieties.

Ronne’s Rugelach
Rugelach translates to “little twist” in Yiddish. So this is Chozen’s twist on Ronne Fisher’s (aka “Mom’s”) famous recipe. Rugelach made with chopped walnuts and golden raisins meets cinnamon ice cream flavored with fresh cream cheese and apricot jam.

Matzoh Crunch
Matzoh is a simple combination of water and flour, and it’s eaten all eight days of Passover in many forms. Here matzoh is coated in caramel, layered with bittersweet chocolate and sprinkled with kosher salt.

Coconut Macaroon
Italians began eating macaroons for Passover because they have no flour or leavening. Made with the simplest ingredients—almonds and toasted coconut—macaroons prove that sometimes less is more delicious.

Chocolate Gelt
Gelt is the Yiddish word for money but also refers to those chocolate coins that are given out during the festival of Hanukkah.

Apples & Honey
What better way to celebrate Rosh Hashanah than by dipping apples into honey? This tradition is meant to symbolize the hope for a sweet year ahead filled with success, good health and lots of laughter. And, hopefully, ice cream.

Chozen Ice Cream Has Chutzpah

All Chozen ice creams are certified kosher and available exclusively at Central Market. Read on for a sneak peek at the flavors. And, now until December 27, save $1 on all varieties.

Ronne’s Rugelach
Rugelach translates to “little twist” in Yiddish. So this is Chozen’s twist on Ronne Fisher’s (aka “Mom’s”) famous recipe. Rugelach made with chopped walnuts and golden raisins meets cinnamon ice cream flavored with fresh cream cheese and apricot jam.

Matzoh Crunch
Matzoh is a simple combination of water and flour, and it’s eaten all eight days of Passover in many forms. Here matzoh is coated in caramel, layered with bittersweet chocolate and sprinkled with kosher salt.

Coconut Macaroon
Italians began eating macaroons for Passover because they have no flour or leavening. Made with the simplest ingredients—almonds and toasted coconut—macaroons prove that sometimes less is more delicious.

Chocolate Gelt
Gelt is the Yiddish word for money but also refers to those chocolate coins that are given out during the festival of Hanukkah.

Apples & Honey
What better way to celebrate Rosh Hashanah than by dipping apples into honey? This tradition is meant to symbolize the hope for a sweet year ahead filled with success, good health and lots of laughter. And, hopefully, ice cream.

Secret No More: Ines Rosales Olive Oil Tortas

As I write this, my coworker sits next to me, scarfing his way through the entire package, so I feel certain that you will have a similar reaction. I was hoping there would be one left for me to enjoy with coffee this afternoon, but it looks like I’ll miss out if I don’t grab one from his clutches now. I guess that’s my payback for trying to keep them under wraps all this time.

Ines Rosales Sweet Olive Oil Tortas are imported from Seville, Spain, and they are worth every drop of fuel it took to get them here. They are made with 24% extra virgin olive oil and unbleached wheat flour and flecked with tiny anise seeds. Then they’re baked to a gorgeous golden brown and topped with sugar, which is then caramelized perfectly and drizzled with more oil.

Each torta is handcrafted and lovingly wrapped in tissue by women in Spain (or so claims the website). As you may imagine, they are extremely delicate. Serving suggestions include cheeses, but use only the softest and most supple varieties like Brie or Camembert. A hard or heavy cheese will not do, as these precious gems will crumble under the pressure. Nor would you want a pungent or garlicky dip or spread, which would overwhelm the beautiful ingredients. These tortas are equally delicious solo, with a cup of the aforementioned coffee or hot tea.

How I love to eat them: with delicately smoked salmon, real honey, whipped cream cheese (regular cream cheese is not soft enough) and capers. You can blend the salmon into the whipped cream cheese if you prefer, but I find that leaving the salmon in large pieces and using it to surround the cream cheese is a more dramatic presentation. I like honey with the comb intact (Goya makes an excellent and reasonably priced version available at CM), which I drizzle over the plate, leaving pieces of comb.

For garnish, sprinkle a few salty capers and break the tortas into large, manageable pieces for your guests to use for dipping. Stack up the tortas around the edges of your platter, or stage them in a lined basket.

Ines Rosales also makes an orange-flavored variety that is equally fabulous. Try a wedge of it next to your favorite vanilla bean gelato. These and the original flavor can be found in your local Central Market in the Deli department, next to the flatbreads and fruit spreads.

Now that I’ve gotten this off my chest, I’ll serve these up guilt-free this holiday season and hope that you and yours are doing the same.

Secret No More: Ines Rosales Olive Oil Tortas

As I write this, my coworker sits next to me, scarfing his way through the entire package, so I feel certain that you will have a similar reaction. I was hoping there would be one left for me to enjoy with coffee this afternoon, but it looks like I’ll miss out if I don’t grab one from his clutches now. I guess that’s my payback for trying to keep them under wraps all this time.

Ines Rosales Sweet Olive Oil Tortas are imported from Seville, Spain, and they are worth every drop of fuel it took to get them here. They are made with 24% extra virgin olive oil and unbleached wheat flour and flecked with tiny anise seeds. Then they’re baked to a gorgeous golden brown and topped with sugar, which is then caramelized perfectly and drizzled with more oil.

Each torta is handcrafted and lovingly wrapped in tissue by women in Spain (or so claims the website). As you may imagine, they are extremely delicate. Serving suggestions include cheeses, but use only the softest and most supple varieties like Brie or Camembert. A hard or heavy cheese will not do, as these precious gems will crumble under the pressure. Nor would you want a pungent or garlicky dip or spread, which would overwhelm the beautiful ingredients. These tortas are equally delicious solo, with a cup of the aforementioned coffee or hot tea.

How I love to eat them: with delicately smoked salmon, real honey, whipped cream cheese (regular cream cheese is not soft enough) and capers. You can blend the salmon into the whipped cream cheese if you prefer, but I find that leaving the salmon in large pieces and using it to surround the cream cheese is a more dramatic presentation. I like honey with the comb intact (Goya makes an excellent and reasonably priced version available at CM), which I drizzle over the plate, leaving pieces of comb.

For garnish, sprinkle a few salty capers and break the tortas into large, manageable pieces for your guests to use for dipping. Stack up the tortas around the edges of your platter, or stage them in a lined basket.

Ines Rosales also makes an orange-flavored variety that is equally fabulous. Try a wedge of it next to your favorite vanilla bean gelato. These and the original flavor can be found in your local Central Market in the Deli department, next to the flatbreads and fruit spreads.

Now that I’ve gotten this off my chest, I’ll serve these up guilt-free this holiday season and hope that you and yours are doing the same.

Happiness in a Cup: Dreaming Cow Yogurt

Dreaming Cow cream-top yogurt comes from happy, grass-fed Jersey cows roaming freely on family-owned and responsibly run Georgia farms. The custard-like yogurt is all-natural, non-homogenized and minimally processed. That means no refined sugars, stabilizers or starches and a distinct, tart taste.

It’s important to note these folks take “grass fed” very seriously. In fact, Dreaming Cow Creamery is one of the only year-round grass-fed dairies in the country. Many dairies claim grass fed but may only feed their cows a partial diet of grass in the late spring and summer. Dreaming Cow’s cows feed on grass—even in the winter.

So why is grass feeding important? In addition to being high in vitamin A and beta carotene, grass-fed cow’s milk has something in it called conjugated linoleic acids (CLA), which are cancer-fighting fatty acids. The takeaway: these are good fats! Plus you can feel good knowing that the cows producing the milk that went into your cup of Dreaming Cow yogurt live long, healthy lives.

Dreaming Cow yogurt is available in five yummy varieties: plain, honey pear, strawberry pomegranate, vanilla agave and maple ginger. Here’s the cool part: if you like Central Market on Facebook, you can download and print a coupon for a free Dreaming Cow yogurt, good December 19-26, 2011. One spoonful and you’ll be hooked.

Happiness in a Cup: Dreaming Cow Yogurt

Dreaming Cow cream-top yogurt comes from happy, grass-fed Jersey cows roaming freely on family-owned and responsibly run Georgia farms. The custard-like yogurt is all-natural, non-homogenized and minimally processed. That means no refined sugars, stabilizers or starches and a distinct, tart taste.

It’s important to note these folks take “grass fed” very seriously. In fact, Dreaming Cow Creamery is one of the only year-round grass-fed dairies in the country. Many dairies claim grass fed but may only feed their cows a partial diet of grass in the late spring and summer. Dreaming Cow’s cows feed on grass—even in the winter.

So why is grass feeding important? In addition to being high in vitamin A and beta carotene, grass-fed cow’s milk has something in it called conjugated linoleic acids (CLA), which are cancer-fighting fatty acids. The takeaway: these are good fats! Plus you can feel good knowing that the cows producing the milk that went into your cup of Dreaming Cow yogurt live long, healthy lives.

Dreaming Cow yogurt is available in five yummy varieties: plain, honey pear, strawberry pomegranate, vanilla agave and maple ginger. Here’s the cool part: if you like Central Market on Facebook, you can download and print a coupon for a free Dreaming Cow yogurt, good December 19-26, 2011. One spoonful and you’ll be hooked.