Friday, December 20, 2013

Holiday Meals

The Christmas and New Year's holidays are a good time to gather around the table with family and friends for a special meal.  Grass-fed lamb from our farm has been a popular choice for the holidays this season.  We still have available two whole, boneless legs of lamb for roasting, plenty of lamb chops, a little bit of lamb stew meat, a couple of small boneless shoulder roasts, and plenty of lamb chops.  We also have plenty of lean, ground lamb which can be used in a variety of recipes such as casseroles, pot-pies, soups, curries, and stews.  (More lamb roasts will be available later in January 2014.)

Looking for something elegant but not quite so hearty?  Split Cornish hens are easy to prepare and bake and can make quite a festive presentation with simply vegetables.  It is delicious served with a baked sweet potato (or roasted carrots), steamed broccoli (or peas), and wild rice mixed with some orzo and sautéed mushrooms (or bread stuffing is nice).  If you prefer one large roast bird, how about a locally raised, plump chicken for slow-roasting or braising in the oven?  Don't forget the cranberry relish!

For seafood lovers, we have wild-caught yellow-fin tuna filets, wild-caught salmon filets, and also salmon burgers.  All of these can be prepared in less than 15 minutes!  These are delicious with steamed vegetables, pasta, or on top of a big salad.  You can even make your own smoked-salmon spread for appetizers.

Planning to go all-out Cajun for New Year's Day?  Please remember we have wild-caught alligator, Andouille sausage, farm-raised frogs legs, and chicken that combine to make a great Cajun meal with creole seasoning.  Also on hand are prepared beef broth, chicken broth, vegetable broth, and bouillon. Don't forget the cornbread!

Lasagna is another traditional choice around the holidays.  You can find all the ingredients here in the store!  This makes a great buffet item.

Finally, remember to double-check your pantry before you start baking up a storm and realize you are missing a key ingredient!  We are well-stocked with essential baking supplies and toppings.

Please check our Facebook page for updates on hours of operation during the holidays as well as in-store specials.  (Current plans are to be closing a little early on Christmas Eve, closed on Christmas Day, and open most of New Year's Day. Also we will be closed from Friday 12/27 through Monday 12/30/2013.)

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Shopping for Gifts?

December already!  The Thanksgiving leftovers are gone.  The media buzz continues to get louder and louder about holiday shopping bonanzas.  Anxiety and weariness are beginning to overtake many people's holiday spirit as end-of-month, end-of-quarter, and end-of-year deadlines loom at work.

Please remember that you can find last-minute gifts at Homer Village Market.  And you don't have to wait until the last minute.  Stop by and have a look around.  You will not find a crowd, and you will not hear a lot of clanging carts.  You will not even hear Christmas music.  If you can tolerate the buzzing of the coolers and the confines of this small store, the rest of your shopping trip will be a breeze.

Here are some ideas for small gifts and stocking stuffers:
  • Beef Jerky
  • Local Maple Syrup
  • Dark Chocolate Covered Raisins
  • Premium 72% Dark Chocolate Bars
  • Anthony Thomas Candy:  Chocolate-covered Pretzel Roads, Pecan Dainties, Buckeyes
  • Hand-Made Crocheted Dish Rags
  • Hand-Made Crocheted Baby Shawls
  • Hot Wheels Cars
  • Small Stuffed Animals
  • Fragrant and Colorful Candles in Jar - 28 oz. burns 120-140 hours - 2 wicks - made in Ohio
  • Locally made Pickles and Mustards and Jams
  • Ohio gourmet pasta (including no-boil lasagna)
  • Wisconsin and Ohio Cheeses and Gourmet Crackers
  • Summer Sausage
  • Smoke Alarm
  • Burt's Bees Lip Balm
  • Board Games and Puzzles
  • Incense
  • Knit Caps
  • Hand Tools
  • Gift Certificates
As I was growing up, one of the strangest gifts I can remember that my Dad would get each year from his mother-in-law (my grandma) was a frozen rabbit ready to cook.  Maybe around this part of Ohio that would not be considered such a strange gift, but this was in a suburb of Cleveland!  We didn't know anyone who hunted, but apparently my grandma did.  She lived further from the city.

We don't have anything like rabbit in our freezer here at Homer Village Market, but if you are looking for local lamb, wild-caught Louisiana alligator white meat, yellow-fin tuna, salmon filets, or frogs legs, we can hook you up!

Enjoy the holiday season, and I hope to see you here at the store shopping for some specialty foods for entertaining or for gifts!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

More Quick Meal Ideas

Fast Pizza.....preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Place a couple of individual-size, Kontos-brand, hand-stretched pizza crusts on a cookie sheet.  Spread a few spoonfuls of pizza sauce on top of each crust and then top with your favorites including some sliced, shredded or grated Italian-style cheeses. Bake for 5 minutes. One of our pizza sauces on hand at the store contains ground pepperoni, so you really do not even need to add meat.  (If you prefer a crisper crust, slide the pizzas right onto the oven rack instead of placing the cookie sheet in the oven.)

Salad - while the pizza is baking, toss some pre-washed 80-20 blend of romaine and spring-mix salad greens in a bowl with some chopped tomatoes and other veggies of your choice.  I like a handful of sliced onion and some black olives.  Dress with your favorite dressing or vinegar and oil.  I like Garlic Expressions salad dressing.

Have a little more time and feeling adventurous?  How about stuffing some poblano peppers and baking those?  I like to blanch the peppers in boiling water for a couple of minutes to soften them so they do not need to bake so long to become tender.  You can make a stuffing out of finely-ground beef mixed with finely chopped veggies such as onions, garlic, and celery, and some bread crumbs or cooked rice to help hold it all together.  Adding a beaten egg to the mixture also helps the stuffing combine like a meatball inside the pepper.  Prepare a  light tomato sauce and spoon it over the tops of the peppers in a casserole dish.  You could add about a half cup of water to the casserole before placing it in a 350 degree oven uncovered for 45 minutes to an hour, depending on how cold your ingredients were and how large the stuffed peppers are.  For safety, test with a cooking thermometer for beef doneness (recommended 160 degrees for ground beef).  These are good with any style potatoes--mashed, baked, fried, or hash browns.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013


I still remember hearing "COLD BEER HERE....GET YOUR COLD BEER HERE!" as the red-aproned, beer-concession vendor walked up and down the big cement stairs at the baseball and football stadiums in Cincinnati where I went to school.    I also recall how good a cold beer tasted when consumed on a hot day at the zoo.  Another place where a cold beer seemed to make a lot of sense was at Chuck-E-Cheese's with pizza while the kids worked up a frenzy playing all those noisy and colorful games.  Watching the passersby on busy Division Street in Chicago from a window seat at a tavern, and sipping an ice-cold microbrewery beer, really can't be beat.   Well maybe it can.....drinking an ice cold Tsingtao beer in a frosty glass to wash down a spicy meal of dry-braised jumbo shrimp stir fried with green onions, hot peppers, garlic, and ginger over steamed rice.....or enjoying an ice-cold Guinness Stout while waiting for the waiter to bring out my sampler plate of lamb curry, tandoori chicken, and spicy samosas.  A hot summer day, sitting around the pool and grilling bratwurst.....and having some cold brews with friends....that is a lot of fun too!

Did you know that America's beer distributors directly employ more than 130,000 people in the United States and add 54 billion dollars to America's gross domestic product annually? Beer distributor activities contribute more than 10.3 billion dollars to federal, state, and local tax bases. Yes, it is true, according to a study just published by the Center for Applied Business and Economic Research at the University of Delaware.

According to the federal government's Alcohol, Tax, and Trade Bureau (TTB), there were over 2,031 breweries in the United States in 2012. Of those breweries, 66% produce only between 1 and 1000 barrels of beer (31 gallons in a barrel) per year and only 16 breweries (less than 1%) produce over 6 million barrels a year.    According to the National Beer Wholesalers Association's beer factsheet citing the Brewer's Almanac, this 2,031 number of breweries in 2012 compares to only 48 breweries in 1961, 350 breweries in 1971, and in 1981 there were 1,499 breweries.

 In 2010, Anheuser-Busch had the largest market share at 49.3% followed by Miller-Coors with 30.2%.The next largest market share is Crown Imports (e.g. Corona) at 5.3%.    In 1971, Anheuser-Busch had 29% market share followed by Schlitz at 19% and Fallstaff at 13% market share.

There are over 13,000 different beer labels available to American consumers in a highly regulated distribution system.  This system includes:
  • over 2,000 U.S. breweries (with operations in every state), 
  • about 3,300 licensed, independent beer distributors in the U.S.,
  • and over 548,000 licensed alcohol retailers.
This system ensures the integrity of the product as well as the responsible sale of the product and, of course, the collection of taxes.

According to a Gallop Poll in July 2010, the U.S. drinking rate hit a 25-year high with over 67% of U.S. adults drinking alcohol.  Over the past ten years, the "beverage of choice" among U.S. adults consuming alcohol has remained relatively steady with
  •  over 40% preferring beer,
  •  about 33% preferring wine,
  •  and about 25% preferring distilled spirits. 
Over the past 30 years, the percentage of U.S. adults who do not consume alcoholic beverages has remained rather steady at about 33%.

So what is your beverage of choice?  I prefer wine.  More about that later....

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Historic Moment in Burlington Township November 5, 2013

On Election Day this year, Burlington Township voters passed local liquor options to allow Homer Village Market to sell beer and wine for carryout in an otherwise "dry" township.  As the owner of Homer Village Market, I am grateful to the community for giving me this privilege.  

Following the repeal of Prohibition in 1933, the voters in Burlington Township (and many other localities throughout the United States) elected to continue the prohibition of the manufacture, distribution, or sale of beer, wine, mixed beverages, and spirituous liquor.  In the 1980's the requisite number of voters successfully petitioned to put the issue of beer and wine sales on the ballot for a convenience store in Burlington Township, but the issue did not obtain a majority "YES" vote at the election.

In 2006, Homer Village Market became a qualified applicant for C-1 and C-2 liquor permits at the Ohio Board of Liquor Control.  The application for these permits has been pending since that time because of the "dry" status of the township.  It was necessary to obtain the majority "Yes" vote by the voters in Burlington Township before the permits could be issued to Homer Village Market. 

The 2013 election was the first attempt by Homer Village Market to obtain the voter's consent for the issuance of these permits.  Two local options were presented for voter approval and both passed with a majority "Yes" vote. 

  • The retail sale of beer, wine, and mixed beverages, Monday through Saturday (in original, sealed containers) for off-premises consumption
  • The retail sale of beer only on Sundays between the hours of 11 a.m. and midnight (in original, sealed containers) for off-premises consumption
Because it was not known how the election would turn out, Homer Village Market did not make any plans for implementing the beer and wine sales in 2013.  Now that the voters have approved these local options, Homer Village Market will begin making preparations in accordance with the Ohio Liquor Laws, to be stocked, licensed, and ready to retail beer and wine by early February 2014.

We have waited 93 years for these sales to be allowed, so I hope customers will not mind waiting a few months for Homer Village Market to get our shelving rearranged, inventory stocked, and premises inspected for licensing to begin retail sales of beer and wine in early 2014.   Meanwhile, please let us know your brand preferences so we can have your favorite beer and wine in stock when retail sales begin.  You can visit the store's website for contact information or stop by the store.

Soup Weather

When the weather turns chilly and windy, warm soup really hits the spot!  This morning before I headed to work at the store, I gathered a handful of jumbo carrots and some peppers from the fridge.  At the store I gathered some potatoes, garlic, and a big, white onion.  In less than 10 minutes, I had everything prepped, seasoned, and layered in the pot set to simmer.  I added more water and some soy sauce to the broth about 30 minutes later. Vegetable soup was ready in time for my lunch.

For dinner, I plan to sauté some beef tips or chicken--depending on what sounds good later--and add that to my soup bowl with some peas.  For leftovers tomorrow, I might try a bowl of soup (in half of a baked acorn squash) with sliced sausage added.  This process of adding ingredients to create a new meal out of the one just prepared is known as "morphing" (as in metamorphosis)!

This week, customers shopped for ingredients for potato soup with ham and also for making chili. What kind of soup do you and your family like to make?

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

What's for Dinner?

It's the end of the month, and money might be tight.  No need to forego a really tasty meal.  Cooking at home is far less expensive than dining out, and you don't have to be a talented chef to stir fry some beef tips with chopped veggies.  They cook very quickly and are very tender and flavorful.   Here are some menu ideas for the USDA Choice-grade beef sirloin tips that you can pick up here at Homer Village Market in the refrigerated case.

  •  If you like an Oriental-style stir fry, use a heavy frying pan to brown the meat with some tender veggies of your choice (thinly sliced broccoli, zucchini, onions, carrots). Soy sauce and sesame oil make a nice flavor.  If you have black bean sauce, even better (you can buy all three at our store).  Add some mushrooms or chopped veggies of your choice, and serve this over rice.  Deglaze the pan with a little water and thicken with a spoonful of cornstarch mixed with cold water.
  • If you prefer American style, use some savory spices/herbs (paprika, thyme, parsley or just salt and pepper), and serve over any style of potato--baked, mashed, or hash browns.  You don't have to have any special gravy or sauce on hand so long as you have a little bit of flour or corn starch as a thickener.  You could simply "deglaze" your frying pan with a little bit of water or broth to make a sauce.  Beer works nicely too with beef! A nice flavoring to have on hand for beef would be a few drops of worcestershire sauce.
  • You could also season the beef tips with salt and pepper (paprika is nice), then brown them quickly in some olive oil and serve over buttered noodles.  If you like cream sauce, you could make your own (and avoid a lot of extra sodium) or simply open a can of cream-style soup.   Sour cream is a nice addition to a sauce for beef and noodles.  If you like onions, sauté them along with the beef.  If you like peas, add cooked peas to the noodle mixture when ready to serve.  Very pretty with peas....
  • Here's a fun and quick way to use these tender beef tips in a burrito-style sandwich.  Brown the beef in a pan.  If you like onions or green peppers or hot peppers, chop some and add those to the pan first since the meat cooks quickly.  Garlic is a nice seasoning.   Simply warm some burrito-size flour tortillas and use the beef-veggie stir fry as your filling.  Top with your favorite cheese and some chopped tomatoes or lettuce, if you like.  Roll up the filled tortillas and enjoy! If you want it to taste like a Mexican-style burrito, be sure to have some taco or burrito seasoning on hand when you brown the beef (cumin, chili powder, paprika work well together with a little salt and oregano).
  • One last idea.  Get a 2 or 3 quart pot and place some sautéed onions, carrots, and celery in the pot and some diced potatoes.  Cover with water  seasoned with salt and pepper (or broth), and simmer until the potatoes and carrots are almost tender (about 15 minutes).  Meanwhile, season and then brown the beef tips on med-high heat in a frying pan with a little olive oil.  Add the browned beef to the soup pot when the veggies are almost tender.  Get the flavorful bits from the frying pan by "deglazing" the pan with a cup of water, and add those pan juices to the soup pot.  Simmer to blend the flavors for about 3-5 minutes, do not boil.   If you like more of a tomato base to your soup, add a spoonful of tomato paste or ketchup when the soup is nearly ready.  If you want a more hearty soup, add some kidney beans (or green beans if you are watching your carbs).
Hope these ideas have inspired you to try some quick meals at home.  These menu ideas work well with chicken also, including leftover chicken.  When working with raw chicken, however, be sure to cook it thoroughly after you brown it (165 degrees in center).

Friday, October 25, 2013

Harvest Time

The frost is on the pumpkin patch, and the area farmers began last week to harvest their corn and soybean crops.   Farming machinery roars by the store on its way to the fields, and trucks overflowing with grain pass by as they head to the local feed mill.

As the sun goes down, look in the direction of a distant hum, and you can see the thrashing dust on the horizon as the harvesters make their way through the rows of corn.   The farmers spend long hours in the fields at harvest time, often well into the night's darkness.

Herds of deer are running for cover during the harvest.  During the pre-dawn hours, they go back to the fields to forage for spilled grain and remnants of crops left behind by the equipment.   Hunters, chilled to the bone, sitting in trees along the field boundaries, are waiting for sunrise to get a good shot with their bows and arrows.   Those poor, unsuspecting deer!

Meanwhile, back at the store, we have hot coffee, hot chocolate, hot tea, and of course many cold, refreshing beverages for the weary farmers and their helpers.  Sandwiches, snacks, and a friendly smile await them at the Homer Village Market.

If you are back at the house, waiting for your hungry men to come home for dinner, feel free to stop by the store to see what we have to make a hearty and satisfying meal in a hurry.  And remember to pick up some snacks for his tractor ride tomorrow!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Beer and Wine for Carryout

Did that title get your attention? 

Homer Village Market is located in a "dry" township, Burlington Township, in Licking County, Ohio.  People living in this community have to travel at least 2 miles but usually 4 or more miles to find a place to buy a bottle of wine or a pack of beer.

Burlington Township is a sprawling, rural area covering about 25 square miles.  Homer Village Market is located in the far northwestern edge of the Township, about twenty miles from the county seat, Newark, but only three miles south of the Knox County boundary.  State Route 661, the highway that intersects with the store's Homer Road address,  is a busy road with many commuters between Granville and Mount Vernon and those traveling further north to Interstate 71, Mansfield, Loudenville, or Bellville.

Even with all that traffic, the sparsely populated, unincorporated community of Homer and the surrounding rural neighborhoods do not provide enough business for Homer Village Market to make a profit selling groceries and cold pop.   Over the years, many people have asked for beer and wine and wonder when it will be offered.   Many people state that is the reason they do not shop at the store as much as they would otherwise, because they have to go into town "anyhow" for beer or wine.

Beer and wine is relatively expensive, so this is not something people normally stock in their pantries to last them all month.  Most people who consume beer or wine will shop for it daily or weekly rather than stocking a month's supply.   Homer Village Market is missing all of those taxable sales, and instead customers are taking their business elsewhere and picking up their groceries at the same time.

Maybe I'm hardheaded, but I didn't believe my suppliers when they told me it would not be possible to make a profit in a convenience store without alcohol sales.  After more than seven years in business here, I have to finally admit they were right. That is why I am finally going to the voters to ask for permission to add beer and wine to the shelves and coolers at the Homer Village Market!  I will be very grateful to the voters if the issues pass, so the store can continue operating and serving the people who have come to rely on its convenience!

If you are registered to vote in Burlington Township (Licking County, Ohio), please VOTE YES on the two local ballot questions regarding (1) beer and wine carryout and (2) beer carryout on Sundays.  Thank you!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

New Fall-Winter Hours

Each year, as the daylight hours grow shorter and the final months of the year are upon us, Homer Village Market makes a few changes to operating hours and days.    It is that time again!!!

Keep in mind when you are out for a Sunday drive to enjoy the fall colors and festivities, you can stop by the store between Noon and 4 p.m. for groceries, cold beverages, and specialty products.   Check out our selection of Ohio foods including jams and jellies, apple butter, pickles and salsa, mustards, hot pepper butter, maple syrup, chocolates, ice cream, pasta, and local lamb.    We also have candles made in Ohio with all-USA ingredients featuring some seasonal scents you will love!

The new hours beginning the last weekend in September are as follows:

  • Open Sunday from 12:00 NOON until 4:00 p.m.
  • Closed Mondays
  • Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The store is usually closed on major holidays, so if in doubt, please call ahead.  You can also visit our website at and our Facebook page at

We look forward to seeing you soon!  Thanks for shopping at Homer Village Market!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Cheese Varieties in Stock

As summer comes to an end, almost muted by the hectic schedules brought about by the new school year, be sure to take some time to relax and enjoy a picnic.   Don't forget the cheese!  All you need is a small cooler of goodies, a blanket, a plate and knife, a friend or two (or not), and a destination.   The local winery is a great destination, and so would be any of our State parks.  How about your own back yard?

Cheese is an easy choice for an impromptu gathering or a quick snack.   With or without crackers, a bite of cheese alone or paired with sliced apples, grapes, olives, wine, grape or apple juice, salami or summer sausage.....I could go on....but you probably know what I mean.

A wedge of cheese also makes a nice hostess gift when you are an invited guest to someone else's home or picnic!

Right now in the store we have a good selection of well-priced cheeses for snacking or cooking, including:
  • Danish Havarti - 8 oz. - $3.99
  • Ohio Lacey Baby Swiss - 12 oz. - $4.99
  • Asiago (crafted in Wisconsin) - 8 oz. $3.99
  • Parmesan (Wisconsin) - 8 oz. $3.99
  • Gorgonzola (Wisconsin) - 8 oz. $4.99
  • Applewood-smoked Gouda (Wisconsin) - 8 oz. $4.99
  • Sharp Cheddar (Wisconsin) - 8 oz. $3.99
  • Ricotta (Ohio) - 15 oz. $3.50
  • String Cheese (Wisconsin) - 1 oz. servings 59 cents
  • Cottage Cheese (Ohio) - 16 oz. $2.59
  • Shredded cheddar and shredded mozzarella (Ohio)
  • Sliced provolone, sliced swiss, sliced colby (Wisconsin)
The gorgonzola is a crumbly wedge, perfect for salads.  If you haven't tried a salad of lettuce greens, tomatoes, and crumbled bacon with some gorgonzola cheese and a light vinaigrette dressing, you are missing out!  I like to toss in something tart also such as black olives or cranberries. If you want some crunch, add a spoonful of chopped nuts or seeds.    No need for anything else; this is a meal in itself!

The end of summer is a great time to enjoy homemade lasagna with lots of cheese!  With the colder evenings, heating up the kitchen might be welcome.  Lasagna is a great way to use up some of those abundant veggies from the garden, especially tomatoes, zucchini, and greens.   The leftovers freeze well and make a very appreciated easy lunch or dinner at a moment's notice.  

There are many versions of lasagna recipes, and limitless variations.  Each one calls for different ways of using the ricotta (or even substituting cottage cheese).  I prefer adding nothing to the ricotta....or if I add anything it might be a dash of milk to make it creamier and some Italian herbs, though I have also added beaten egg and sour cream.  I like to use a lot of other cheeses as well such as mozzarella, provolone, and parmesan among the layers of noodles, tomatoes, and vegetables, with or without a meaty sauce.

If you are watching your carbs, as many of us are, you do not even need to use lasagna noodles!  Layers of sliced zucchini or eggplant work nicely with a top layer of sliced tomatoes.  Or you could just use one layer of noodles on the bottom and the other layers veggies and cheese and sauce.  Don't forget the garlic, mushrooms and a few drops of extra virgin olive oil, especially if you are going meatless.

You could also make a  Latin-style lasagna (rather than traditional Italian), by using some cheddar or jack cheese and adding layers of veggies such as peppers, onions, tomatoes, and black beans or pinto beans and some different spices such as cumin and paprika and cayenne pepper.   Cottage cheese mixed with sour cream might be a better choice than ricotta in this recipe.   Just before serving, add some crumbled tortilla chips on top of your lasagna and some shredded cheese to melt quickly in the oven.  Chopped green onions make a nice garnish too.   If you want to add meat to the layers, any ground beef, pork, chorizo, or slices of chicken work well.   Any salsa could be used as a sauce.

Now I'm getting hungry!  How about you? 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Fall Hours Coming Soon - Closing on Mondays....Opening on Sundays

Summer is winding to a days, chilly nights, and foggy mornings.....almost harvest time!  This is my favorite time of year!

On Monday, September 23, Homer Village Market will begin closing on Mondays for the Fall season.  Good news is we will be open on Sundays instead beginning Sunday, September 29.   The store opens at 10 a.m. and closes at 6:30 p.m.

Enjoy the beautiful weather!  Hope to see you in the store again soon!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Enjoy Your Labor Day Holiday!

We will be CLOSED on Monday, September 2, 2013, Labor Day.

Please stop by soon for your picnic and party foods!

Whatever your plans for Labor Day weekend, have FUN!  

If you are gathering with friends and looking for something special, stop by to see what's new in the store this week.  In the deli department:
  • Yoder's Macaroni Salad
  • Tribe's Roasted-Red Pepper Hummus
  • Willey's Sweet and Mild Salsa
  • Yoder's Home-Style Mashed Potatoes
  • Havarti Cheese (Denmark)
  • Barrel-Cured Sauerkraut
  • French Onion-Sour Cream Dip
  • Cheese Tortellini - Tri-Color
  • Smoked Sausage (natural casing)
  • Ricotta Cheese
  • Walnut Creek Summer Sausage - Beef with Jalapeno and Cheese
  • Yoder's Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  • Troyer's Trail Bologna (Ring style)
We also have a lot of steaks and chops in the freezer as well as seafood and sausage:
  • 10 oz. New York Strip Steak (beef, top loin - USDA "choice") - $6.75 each
  • 6 oz. Ball-Tip Sizzler (beef, bottom sirloin butt steak, USDA "choice") - $3.75 each
  • 12 oz. Pork Chop "porterhouse cut" - $5.50 each
  • 4 oz. Yellow-Fin Tuna Steaks - $2.85 each
  • 8 oz. Salmon filet (boneless/skinless) - $5.50 each
  • local lamb chops $13.95/pound (2 chops per pack)
  • 12 - 5 oz. (3 pounds) Salmon Burgers - $22.50
  • Finely ground, aged, lean, beef steak trimmings - $5.75 for 1.33 pound package
  • Wild-caught Louisiana Alligator white meat filets - $15 per pound
  • Frogs Legs - $32 for 5 pounds (4-6 pair per pound) or $1.00 each (6-8/pound)
  • Ground Pork Sausage $2.50 pound; maple-sausage links $3.25  (12 oz. package)
Plenty of bread, milk, granola, bacon, and eggs are on hand as well as your favorite flavors of ice cream from Smith's Dairy.   We also have Nickles donuts and Danish for that morning sweet tooth, plenty of cold beverages, ice, charcoal, and lots of interesting sweet and salty snacks.

Beverages include all Pepsi's Products, including Gatorade, energy drinks,  as well as iced tea, grape juice, cranberry juice cocktail, tomato juice, sparkling grape juice cocktail,  V-8 juice, and many varieties of bottled water.    Need a lemon?  We have that too!

Hope to see you soon!  Have a safe and happy holiday!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Seven Year Anniversary August 15, 2013

Every August I remember that day in 2006 when we opened the door to our first customers!   I was a nervous wreck, never having operated a cash register before and only a few days practice!  Making change is not one of my favorite things to do, but I do enjoy meeting and greeting everyone and seeing smiling faces!

For those of you long-time customers, maybe you remember what the store used to look like back in those early days.

Over the years, we found out nobody likes to buy the newspaper.....or if they do, they like to buy one and take the rest for the coupons.  So we no longer offer any newspapers outside or inside the store. 
In 2010, we tried to spruce up the front of the store with a knee-wall and windows.  This offers a little bit more protection from the weather, the noise of traffic, and the glare of the sun.    After that we added some fencing too.  Then came the feed shed and the food cart.  The parking lot is getting smaller!  
Maybe someday there will be plans for expansion.  Meanwhile, thank you for shopping in the tiny store in Homer!   You are the reason we are here!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Good Week to Make Chili

Now that the temps are well below 80 degrees again, with evenings in the 50's, heating up the kitchen isn't going to cause any complaints from the family, especially if you are making something they love!  Now is the time to use some of the garden veggies you have been accumulating, or head off to the farmer's markets in Granville or Mount Vernon to get fresh veggies from another local garden.

Homer Village Market just received freshly ground steakburger, which is very flavorful and lean.  This ground beef makes great hamburgers on the grill and also is excellent for making chili, stuffed peppers, or stuffed cabbage.    In addition to the beef steakburger, we have the following ingredients on hand for your cooking pleasure:

  • Poblano peppers (great for roasting, grilling, stuffing, sautéing - love them in chili)
  • Local Zucchini
  • Jumbo white onions
  • Vine ripened tomatoes
  • Cans of whole roma tomatoes and cans of diced tomatoes (quick solution for chili)
  • Jars of roasted red peppers
  • Jumbo sweet potatoes
  • Jumbo heads of cabbage
  • Broccoli
  • Fresh lemons
  • Fresh Blueberries
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (first press) imported from Italy
  • Wedges of parmesan cheese
  • Cheddar, mozzarella, and hot pepper cheeses
  • Large variety of commonly used dried herbs and spices if you do not have an herb garden
My all-time favorite chili recipe (adapted from Alice's Restaurant) calls for about 3 pounds of fresh garden tomatoes (or substitute canned),  a couple of chopped/sauteed green bell peppers, a large chopped/sauteed onion, fresh garlic, tomato paste, kidney beans, water, and spices (salt, pepper, basil, cayenne pepper, cumin, paprika, and bay leaf).  I love to serve it over a little brown rice and top with chopped onions and cheddar cheese...sometimes sour cream too.

Zucchini is another favorite of mine for cooking.  It can be delicious very simply prepared baked or grilled, or you could hollow out the center and stuff with a rice/veggie (meat optional) mixture held together with a little egg and bread crumbs and cheese and roast then broil to brown tops.   My grandmother used to grate the large zucchini (first peeled and seeded) using a box grater to get long thin strips.  This she sautéed in butter and oil with chopped onion.  Then after about 10 minutes, when it was almost tender, she added  a sauce made with salt and pepper and a mixture of sour cream, freshly chopped dill weed, paprika, and a dash of vinegar.  If the sauce is too thin, you can add a little water with flour; and if it is too thick, just add a little water and reseason to taste.  I enjoyed eating this dish warm with mashed potatoes or even cold all by itself.

If you have a lot of zucchini, bell peppers, onions, and tomatoes, even if you do not have any eggplant, you can make a tasty recipe of ratatouille.  This vegetable stew can be served over rice or by itself as a nice vegetarian meal or as a side dish with a meat entrée (especially good with lamb).   I will let you find your own favorite recipe for this dish.  It is so much fun to experiment.  This is one of my favorite summer meals because it is healthy, uses up a lot of veggies, and looks extremely interesting and colorful on the plate.  I like to top mine with freshly grated parmesan cheese if I'm in the mood for Italian, or with feta cheese if I'm in a greek sort of mood.

Whatever you decide to make, take advantage of these nice cool, late-summer temperatures to fire up the oven and range! 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Graeter's Chocolate-Chocolate Chip Pints

Have you enjoyed Graeter's ice cream yet?   This one is my all-time favorite!   Once known as "Double-Chocolate Chip," it is now called Chocolate Chocolate Chip.  It is a rich, chocolate ice cream with huge semi-sweet chocolate chips.   Graeter's is based in Cincinnati but has several stores in the central Ohio area and also ships their ice cream nationwide.

The list of ingredients for this flavor is simple:

  • Cream
  • Milk
  • Cane Sugar
  • Cocoa
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate
Graeter's uses a small-batch, French pot method of making this rich ice cream and then hand packs it into the pints.    If you lift one of these pints and then lift a pint of any other brand on the shelf, it seems twice as heavy as the other brand!

The ingredients, process, and the hand-packed container make this ice cream about twice as expensive as the usual brands, but you will know it is worth every penny once you taste it!   It is so rich that you will only want to eat about a half cup to satisfy your craving! 

So if you are looking for a special treat or wanting to impress that special someone, stop by for one of these pints!    Let me know how you like it!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Hartford Fair (Croton, Ohio) - Sunday, August 3 thru Sunday, August 10

It's that time of year again!   The kids have mixed feelings about this!  They look forward to the Fair all summer; but they know that once the Fair is over, the start of school is very close!

This is the 155th year of the Hartford Fair, an independent fair in Licking County, Ohio.   One of the most popular events, the truck and tractor pull, will be at 7:30  p.m. on Tuesday, August 6, this year.

Some of the fun actually begins on the day before the Fair begins.  On Saturday, August 3, the fairgrounds are open mainly for the entry of livestock and registration/set up of exhibitors.  There are some scheduled meetings, crafts and games, retrievers' demonstrations, and a flower show, all leading up to the official Opening Ceremony at 6 p.m. followed by a parade at 6:30, musical entertainment at 9 p.m., and fireworks at 10 p.m.   Many families will set up camp at the fairgrounds and stay all week while exhibiting their livestock or other agricultural entries in the Fair's competitions.

Judges will oversee contests of showmanship and quality among various breeds of animals including horses, cows, goats, rabbits, poultry, sheep, and swine.  The fair is home to many other types of fun contests including:

  • Rooster Crowing,
  • Ice Cream Eating,
  • Kids' M&M Cookie contest
  • Cherry Pie contest,
  • breads contest
  • pedal tractor pull,
  • school bus and pick-up truck races,
  • antique tractor pull,
  • turkey-calling contest,
  • frog "jump-off",
  • wild game cook-off,
  • sweets and greens cook-off,
  • harness racing,
  • motorcycle racing,
  • motocross racing
  • goat obstacle-course contest,  
  • demolition derby
In addition to contests, there are demonstrations by coon dogs, retrievers, craftspersons making paper with seeds, safety demonstrations about guns, archery, and fishing.   There are also activities such as canoeing, kayaking, creeking, and mining for gems.

Exhibits, exhibits galore, and all will be judged!    Animals, fruits and vegetables, baked goods, gems, classic cars, crafts, insects, you name it--you can find it at the Hartford Fair.   

Traditional attractions including food vendors, games, rides, and musical entertainment mingle with the exhibits all week long  

Besides being so much fun, the Fair can be educational as well.  You can learn about recycling, organic gardening, composting, pollination, attend a church service, and donate blood, all in the same week.Hartford Fair Website

In the Store Today

I am always excited to let everyone know about new "fresh" items arriving in the store, for a couple of reasons.  They don't stay "fresh" for very long, and my prices are very good!   The prices are very good because I want you to come in and buy while it's still fresh!  


Back by popular demand, USDA Choice grade ball-tip sizzlers! From grain-fed, western beef, these are 6 ounce sirloin steaks, wet aged for tenderness, and available 4 for $15 or $3.99 per steak.   We try to keep these in stock every week that calls for some sunshine!  They are fresh, not frozen.

These steaks are great on the grill, in stir fries, or even on a shish-ka-bob.  Ball-tip sizzlers are flavorful and tender enough so you don't need to marinate them.  They are vacuum packed one per pack, so it is recommended you remove the vac pack about 5 minutes before you are ready to grill them. 

If you want a whole box of 32 steaks, order by Thursday morning for pickup on or after the following Tuesday.    Beef prices vary weekly, so call for the current price.  Case discount varies.


During the summer starting about mid-July, we receive deliveries of local produce purchased from the local produce auction North of Mount Vernon.  This week we have green bell peppers, red tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, candy onions, and green cabbage.   We also have a box of California cantaloupes that are nice and ripe offered two melons for $1.50!

If your garden is no longer producing some of these items or hasn't started yet....or if you don't have a garden this year, you can still enjoy fresh, garden tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, cabbage, and onions grown locally!    If you want a box all to yourself, just call by Monday so I can make sure we get enough for you at the auction on Wednesday.   If the prices on an item seem to high, based on supply and demand at the auction, our supplier will just pass on the item.   Therefore, we cannot guarantee we can get the item you desire.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Will the Rain Ever Stop? Stop by for an Ice-Cold Soda!

We got through a soggy Fourth of July holiday that fell on a Thursday of a rainy week.  The holiday weekend was almost nonstop rain and clouds....until Sunday, July 7.   Sunday had quite a bit of sunshine until late afternoon.  Although the day was muggy, it was still quite a pleasure to see sunshine after all the rain and clouds.  

On Sundays, Homer Village Market is closed.   This past Sunday felt like a lazy day of rest.   There were still chores to catch up on, but the pace was a lot slower than on a "work day".     I was around the back rooms of the store almost all day until venturing out early evening.

Sometime during Sunday night, thieves vandalized the Pepsi machine out front of the store, with the intent of forcing entry to get the money inside the vending machine.   They must have visited during the rain storms or maybe a brief lull in the rain.  They left behind a muddy handprint on the store beside the vending machine, and took the cash box from inside the machine.

All's well that ends well.  The thieves probably won't try that again.  Risking getting caught in the act for such a small monetary reward! 

On Monday, July 8, Pepsi sent a repairman within an hour of getting my call about the problem.  They replaced all the damaged parts, installed a new cash box, and tested it to be sure it works again.

So please stop by for an ice cold can of pop from the Pepsi machine for the price of 75 cents!    The machine is kept well-stocked and in good repair.   The area is well lit and close to the parking lot. The flavors currently available in 12 ounce containers are:

  • Pepsi
  • Diet Pepsi
  • Mountain Dew
  • Diet Mountain Dew
  • Dr. Pepper
  • Diet Dr. Pepper
  • Orange Crush
  • Mug Rootbeer - No Caffeine
  • Sierra Mist - All Natural - lemon lime - No Caffeine
  • Aquafina Water - 12 ounce bottle
Enjoy the summer!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Something "Cool" to Drink....What about Calories?

Have you tried the Starbucks Iced Coffee?  When I have a cup of hot coffee in the morning, or anytime of day,  I like it black.   Yet, there is something about this iced coffee with 2% milk and just a little bit of sugar that tastes so good to me in the afternoon!  It's a little bit like having dessert!

 For those of you wondering about calories, black coffee is zero calories, the 13.7-ounce bottle of  Mocha Frappuccino is 260 calories, and the 11-ounce bottle of  iced coffee is 110 calories.   That doesn't seem too bad for a little treat of iced coffee midday!

 If you are a fan of Mountain Dew to get your day started and to keep your day going, this 12- ounce "Throwback" bottle is fun to drink and is 170 calories, same as a 12-ounce can of Mountain Dew.  This bottle of Dew is sweetened with sugar rather than corn syrup.  

 If you like sweet tea and need to quench your thirst, the 18.5 ounce bottle of Lipton Pure Leaf sweet tea is only 160 calories.     Of course the same size bottle of unsweetened tea quenches your thirst for zero calories.   If you like sweet tea but not the calories, you could get unsweetened tea and add your own low-calorie sweetener, or purchase a bottle of diet iced tea.  I'd much rather drink unsweetened tea so I can splurge on an  ice cream sandwich too!

Speaking of ice cream, if you are looking for the lesser of evils when it comes to calories, sherbet has no fat (110 calories per half cup), and neither does a fudge bar (130 calories) nor a popsicle (90 calories).  The ice cream sandwich tastes satisfying with both fat and sugar and only 190 calories compared to a Klondike bar (290 calories) or a Snickers Ice Cream bar (280 calories).    If you buy a pint of vanilla ice cream and eat the whole pint, you would be consuming 760 calories.  Don't do it!!!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

We Will Be Open on the Fourth of July!

If you are out and about on the Fourth of July and find yourself near Homer, stop by the little store for a snack and something to quench your thirst!   For all of you local customers, I hope you will be enjoying your holiday and celebrating with family and friends!

We will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Thursday, July 4 and will resume regular hours on Friday and Saturday, open 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.    We have freshly ground steak burger for the grill, plenty of lamb chops,  fresh blueberries, lemons for making fresh lemonade, and plenty of ice, bread, milk, and ice cream.  If you are looking for sides or desserts or appetizers for your picnic, please stop by for a nice selection including many new items this week at special prices!

Hope to see you soon!  Have a great holiday weekend! 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Summer Picnics

Summer is a good time to get outdoors and enjoy getting together with friends and family.  What could be more fun than packing a basket full of easy food and snacks, grabbing a cooler full of beverages and a blanket, and heading outside to a shady picnic table.  Whether you are going to one of the many beautiful parks, going to the local winery, or sitting outside in the yard, something about enjoying food outdoors with friends and family just makes it so much more tasty!

Some of my favorite picnic fare includes summer sausage, cheese, fruit, and of course a good hot dog or steak on the grill!  Match that up with a cold beverage or a nice glass of wine, and life is good!  You can take your picnic further into the woods if you don't need a grill!   Cold cuts and deli salads are convenient to pull out of the cooler and eat as soon as you are hungry.  No waiting, no muss, no fuss!

Memories of childhood picnics never seem to fade.  Of course, I've been accused of remembering everything I've ever eaten, including when and how, and what everyone was wearing....but that is another story.  My grandmother surprised us once on a long road trip.  When we stopped for a picnic, she had chilled, fried chicken and sweet, green grapes.  There was probably home-made potato salad too, and freshly baked chocolate-chip cookies, and iced tea--but I just remember how good the chicken was!!!  

If you are thinking about a picnic, please stop by the Homer Village Market.  We have everything you need including coolers and ice, charcoal and lighter fluid, hot dogs, buns, and all the sides.

Our selection of Amish cheeses right now includes lacey baby swiss, apple-smoked gouda, sharp cheddar, fiesta jack, and farmer's cheese as well as many sliced and shredded varieties.  To go with your cheese plate, we have Walnut Creek all-beef summer sausage or Troyer's Trail Bologna.   

For a meal-sized picnic, we have USDA Choice, 6-ounce Ball-Tip Sirloin Steaks as well as a variety of hot dogs and sausages, pork chops, and seafood (including alligator, frogs legs, tilapia, and salmon).   Deli salads on hand right now include Yoder's Amish Potato Salad, Macaroni Salad, Ham Salad, and Chicken Salad.   Other sides available include baked beans, chips and salsa, chips and dip, and pickles.  Desserts include peanut butter cookies, donuts, chocolate cookies, and lots of candy.   We have cold 2-liter and 12-packs of Pepsi products as well as gallons of Smith's fruit punch, orange drink, or iced tea.    Now that's a picnic!!!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


I'm talking about the weather!!!   This is a good week for ice cream, and also for firing up the grill!

Please stop by for some good deals, and get the whole family SMILING!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

We Made It Through the Storm

I hope that all of you were as fortunate as we were last night!  The thunderstorms and high winds were a threat all evening, and loss of electrical power was a real fear.  We are thankful that Homer Village Market withstood the winds and are hopeful that our luck continues!

Father's Day is this Sunday, and if you haven't picked up a greeting card yet, stop by to choose one!  Also, we have a lot of treats for dads, grand-dads, uncles, and step dads!   Stop by to get some of these guy favorites:

  • Bull Heads Beef Jerky and Beef Sticks
  • Frog's Ranch, all natural Peppered Pickles
  • Speaking of about some frogs legs for the grill?
  • Lamb Chops
  • Salmon Burgers
  • Cajun-style peanuts, roasted in the shell
  • Ice Cream:  Butter Pecan, Moose Tracks, Cookies and Cream, Carmel Cone Sundae
If you are planning to celebrate the following weekend instead, come by for some of those tasty, fresh USDA Choice, 6-oz. sirloin steaks "ball tip sizzlers."  They will be back in stock next Tuesday,     June 18.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend 2013

Beautiful weather is in store for this weekend and Monday, Memorial Day!  I hope everyone is enjoying friends, family, and FOOD!  

Homer Village Market will be open until 4 p.m. on Monday, May 27, for last minute holiday shoppers.  We are closed on Sundays.

If you are looking for something special for the grill, we have:

  •  fresh, USDA Choice, 6 oz. ball tip sirloin sizzler steaks
  •  lamb chops and whole legs of lamb (boneless)
  •  salmon burgers
  •  salmon filets
  •  tilapia filets
  •  ground sirloin patties
  •  angus beef hot dogs 
  •  fresh bratwurst
  •  frogs legs
  •  Louisiana alligator white meat
Fresh produce includes:

  • iceberg lettuce
  • tomatoes
  • zucchini squash
  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • potatoes and onions
  • kale
  • bananas
Nickles Bakery has delivered hot dog and hamburger buns, white and wheat bread, and donuts!
Smith's has delivered fresh milk, ice cream, popsicles, chip dip, sour cream, cottage cheese, and eggs.

Also for your picnic:  a selection of cheeses, Walnut Creek summer sausage, potato salad,  chicken salad, chips and salsa, hummus and pita chips, and a wide selection of beverages including pop, tea, juice, Gatorade, and lemonade.

On Monday we will be getting restocked on Seimer's delicious ham salad, and on Tuesday, more sirloin steaks will be arriving.

Looking forward to seeing you soon!   Enjoy the holiday weekend, and thanks for shopping at Homer Village Market!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

What's New in the Store Today

For your salad-making pleasure, 8-ounce wedges of crumbly, gorgonzola cheese are now in stock.  This pairs well with salads made with any combination of fresh greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, pears, walnuts, grilled steak, and drizzled with balsamic or raspberry vinegar dressing or Garlic Expressions dressing,  We have plenty of vine-ripened tomatoes, lettuce, and many flavors of vinegar and salad dressings to go with this delicious cheese.

For your picnic-style meals, Yoder's mustard potato salad arrived today and we still have cole slaw on hand as well as six-ounce, choice-grade ball-tip sizzler steaks, bratwurst, kielbasa, smoked sausage, salmon, and wieners.   Don't forget the chips, iced tea, sparkling grape juice, and lemonade!

If you are headed to a picnic or the winery, please know that in addition to bars of sharp cheddar cheese from Wisconsin, and Ohio Farmer's Cheese, we now offer an Ohio "Fiesta Jack" cheese from Holmes county.  It is a marbled, Colby-Monterey Jack cheese with lots of jalapeno peppers.   What a festive-looking and tasty cheese, and just the right size, when sliced, to fit on a cracker or pop right into your mouth! 

You can find two flavors of hummus in the deli section.  All natural recipes of roasted red pepper hummus or the classic hummus flavored only with garlic and lemon.   For those unfamiliar with this tasty dip, it is a healthy and simple a mixture of ground garbanzo beans (chick peas), ground sesame seeds (tahini), ground garlic, fresh lemon juice, a little olive oil, and a little salt.   It is very easy to make at home, with or without a blender.  Sometimes other ingredients include hot or sweet peppers, olives, tomatoes, black pepper, feta cheese.   It is traditionally served as an appetizer in Mediterranean cuisines with flat bread for dipping.    Pita chips, pretzel crisps, and baby carrots are nice for dipping in hummus!  It can also be used as an ingredient in a "pinwheel" style wrap, especially good with chopped parsley and tomatoes rolled up into the flatbread sandwich.

Other new items this week include grape juice, sparkling grape juice, caramel-cone-sundae ice cream, toasted-almond-fudge ice cream,  dark-chocolate covered raisins, all-white-meat chicken salad, ham salad, and single servings of tilapia fillets (flash frozen seafood). 

Many people have been making lasagna lately.  Stop by for ricotta cheese, no-boil lasagna noodles, many choices if sauces, fresh tomatoes, as well as grated mozzarella, sliced provolone, parmesan wedges, and cheddar cheese.

Lastly, greeting cards are still on sale!  Remember Mother's Day this coming Sunday!

Hope to see you soon!   If you have a favorite recipe using gorgonzola cheese, please stop by and share!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Brilliant Sunshine! Fire up the Grill!

We are lucky to have some temps in the high seventies this week and lots of sunshine.   Weekend weather isn't forecast to be as nice though, so don't wait until then to fire up the backyard barbeque grill!

We offer lots of meat and seafood for the grill including burgers, sausages, salmon, chicken, and steaks.  Also in the deli cooler are some pre-made salads:  macaroni, potato, and cole slaw. Fresh produce including lettuce and tomatoes are also on hand.

If you are looking for some fresh steaks to grill for dinner, stop by the store for sirloin steaks, only $3.99 each (or $3.50 each when you buy four or more).    These are 6 ounce, USDA "choice"- grade, bottom butt sirloin "ball tip sizzler" steaks from Davis Creek Meats.

Not only are these steaks great on the grill, they make a quick and easy stir-fry. For stir-fry, simply slice one or two steaks thinly in bite-sized pieces, and slice up your choice of vegetables such as onions, carrots, peppers, broccoli, and/or zucchini (and don't forget some fresh garlic).  Then get your frying pan really hot, (I use cast-iron) add a little oil, and then, using two wooden spoons or some tongs, toss the meat and veggies in the hot pan until the meat is brown and the veggies are crisp-tender. 

One technique I like to use for stir-fry is to quickly sear the meat first, remove it from the pan and set it aside in a bowl while I stir fry the vegetables to desired doneness.  This way the meat won't overcook and will be nice and tender and juicy when you add it back to the pan.   When the veggies are tender enough, keep the pan heat really high and "deglaze" it by adding a little liquid.... a half cup to one cup of water or broth or even beer (depending on the volume of meat and veggies)....then reduce heat and add back the meat and you are ready to serve by itself or paired with rice or noodles.

It is fun to experiment with stir-fry meals.   The variations are limited only by your imagination!   I like to add some dried cayenne peppers, black-bean garlic paste, a little water thickened with corn starch and stir that into the hot pan just before serving.  This recipe works well with chicken breast or pork loin, too.  Freshly grated ginger is nice with pork, as is pineapple!

So even if it rains on your barbeque plans, you now have a back-up plan!!!   Have a wonderful week!  Enjoy the sunshine while it lasts!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Spring Showers

Spring is finally here!  Birds are singing, and flowers are blooming everywhere.   The mourning dove is nesting above the light fixture under the store awning, same as last Spring and the one before that. 

The turkeys at our farm are laying eggs, and soon there will be chirping and peeping and the fluttering of tiny new wings!   The little lambs are frolicking in the pasture then resting near their moms.

Big semi trucks are rushing both directions on SR661, another rite of Spring.  People are stirring, builders are building, and goods are making their way to busy destinations.  

Huge green and yellow farm tractors and implements are crawling through the intersection on their way to fertile fields.   The smell of freshly spread manure is wafting in the warm, Spring air.

Thirsty children donning bright, new athletic uniforms and smiling faces are spilling through the door to buy cold beverages and sweet snacks after school.   Frazzled parents are rounding up last-minute groceries for a quick and easy dinner after five.   

Bicycists making their way along the scenic, country roads in preparation for touring with friends this summer are stopping in at the store to refill their water bottles or grab some quick energy snacks.   Soon they will be stopping by for a burst of AC and a cold gatorade!   Smiling and talkative, people on bicycles always bring positive vibes into the store!

I hope you are enjoying the warm-up and Spring rains as well as all the new blooms around the yard.  Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Spring Begins Tomorrow!

It is hard to believe Spring will be here tomorrow because the cold wind is howling today and even some snow flurries are swirling in the air!    Now that it is staying light longer,  in about a month or so we will be extending the store hours to 7 p.m. again (and opening Sundays again...closing Mondays).  Until that time, the winter/spring store  hours will remain unchanged as follows:  open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Here are a few updates on the products you can find at Homer Village Market right now.  

LAMB - we have about six boneless legs of lamb left for those of you still wanting to have roast leg of lamb for Easter.    These are frozen, vacuum packed, rolled and tied roasts ranging from a little over 3 pounds to about 4.5 pounds and priced $9.95/pound.  These lambs were born on our farm, raised on their mother's milk and then enjoyed a diet of fresh pasture and local hay.   In time for grilling season, we plan to have plenty of lamb leg steaks and ground lamb.  Right now the leg steaks are sold out and ground is limited supply.

SALAD - we have egg salad, tuna salad, potato salad and chicken salad in the deli section.   We can make you a protein salad of your choice over fresh, chopped romaine or make you a sandwich to go.

BREAD  - We have sliced rye bread on hand this week as well as our usual selection of wheat, white, and sandwich buns.

SNACKS - We just restocked some of your favorite snacks including cinnamon rolls, cinnamon almonds, cherry-delight trail mix, buffalo peanuts, yogurt pretzels, chocolate pretzels, and gummy bears.   We have a variety of flavors of Bullshead beef jerky in 2 oz and 6 oz. bags as well as beef sticks and lots of sizes and flavors of Uncle Ray's chips.  We just restocked the Turtlelicious cheesecake slices!

GROCERIES - We have added some new varieties of imported pasta sauce and pasta and are well stocked on all the staples and pantry items including common household products such as soaps, paper products, tall kitchen garbage bags,

CONVENIENCE - For quick meals, we have Skyline Chili as well as all the fixin's:  kidney beans, shredded cheddar cheese, diced onions, hot dogs and buns.   Blue Grass Country Ham slices are a quick skillet meal.  We have all the sides including potatoes or potato salad, baked beans, or fresh vegetables.  

PAN, OVEN, OR GRILL -  Found in the freezer section, these go directly from freezer to the pan, oven or grill:   Chicken Breasts, Salmon Burgers.  We also have salmon filets which can be poached in less than 10 minutes and served over salad greens for a quick meal.

CHEESE- Just restocked the BelGioioso aged parmesan cheese wedges, and they are well priced at $3.99 for 8 ounces.  Also just restocked Yoder's Wisconsin sharp cheddar bars and sliced provolone.  We have many other varieties of cheese on hand every day.

DELI MEATS - In addition to Smithfield's sliced mesquite turkey and honey ham, we have sliced salami, bologna, pepperoni, cappicola, bacon, and several sausages including Winter's kielbasa, Farmland's angus beef franks, and Sugardale hot dogs.   Our deli prices are better than you will find in the area grocery stores.

ICE CREAM - We just restocked Ruggles (Smith's) Cookies and Cream in the 1.75 qt. ($3.99) and Rainbow Sherbet quarts ($1.99).   Other flavors in the freezer right now include mint chocolate chip, moose tracks, vanilla, butter pecan, bear claw, chocolate, and mountainberry cheesecake.  If you are on the go, you can always pick up a Klondike or Snickers Ice Cream bar or an ice cream sandwich.    Ice cream pints are still on sale $1.99 with a free spoon upon request.

BEVERAGES - We have restocked the Arnold Palmer half-n-half (lemonade-iced tea) at 99 cents for the "tallboy".   We continue to have our usual selection of Pepsi products, but we regret having to finally pass along some of the price increases from Pepsi on the Aquafina water, Lipton Tea, Oceanspray juices, and the 20 ounce and 12-pack products.  Gatorade is still same price.

GREETING CARDS - Please remember we carry all-occasion greeting cards from Leanin' Tree.

BEER & WINE - Just seeing if you are paying attention.....sorry, we are still located in a dry township.  We do not sell any alcoholic beverages at this time, but we will keep you posted on that.

Thank you for shopping at Homer Village Market!   Please look around and see what's new and, as always, let us know if there is anything you would like to see on our shelves that is missing!  We always appreciate your feedback on the products we currently carry. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

New Arrivals

What a beautiful, sunny day today!  I had the winter doldrums a few weeks ago and began planning a vacation to cheer myself!    Just thinking about it made me feel so much better!  You should try that sometime!

Decided not to go on vacation afterall.  Daydreaming was sufficient!  So the Open Flag will continue flying outside the Homer Village Market this winter every day except Sunday, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

The store is fully stocked today with all the essentials:   Milk, bread, eggs, cheese, fresh produce, lunchmeat, fresh bratwurst, frozen meat and seafood.......and plenty of snacks and desserts including ice cream, candy, cookies, and muffins.    It is so economical to make dinner at home during the week so you can splurge on entertainment on the weekends.    What could be quicker (and healthier) than steaming some broccoli or cauliflower, baking some potatoes or carrots, and preparing a quick entree such as sauteed, baked or poached chicken or seafood!  All you need is a little butter, salt and pepper, and maybe some cheese if you like on the veggies, and you are set!   Even quicker, toss a big salad and put some of that baked or poached chicken or seafood on the salad with your favorite dressing!

I look forward to seeing you soon!  Enjoy the sunshine while it lasts!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Spring Will Be Here Soon

I wish I had brought my rosemary plants indoors before we had so many freezes and thaws.  The plants were looking very happy and green even in the dead of winter, but with the huge swings in temperatures that we have had ranging from single digits to almost seventy degrees then back into the twenties in the past four weeks, the plants are beginning to take on more of a dingy gray dried rosemary.  I fear it is too late now.   

The groundhog has already predicted an early Spring.  Mardi Gras is tomorrow.....and Valentine's Day is this week.  Looking at the calendar,  in less than thirty days, Daylight Savings Time begins.  Farmers will be planning their spring planting and hoping the soils warm up early.

Easter this year is March 31.   How many of you are planning to have a roast leg of lamb from Homer Village Market?     Please do not wait until the week before Easter to shop for your roast.   We remember last year many requests came in for legs of lamb all at once, and not everyone could have exactly what they wanted.   So we have tried to plan ahead to have more roasts available this year.   We have more boneless roasts this time, but also some with bone.  We also have just a couple of loin roasts (rather than having the loin chops cut into individual chops).  For the smaller families, we have a few half-leg roasts.  I hope that you will find what you like for your special holiday meal this year!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

First Lamb of the New Year

Here's the proud mom on the morning of this birth.  They are in the corner of the barn, keeping away from the rest of the herd.  This is a protective mother.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Lambing Season Already

Today is a very cold day in January, and the newborn lambs at our farm are protected from the harsh winds.  They have a special place in the front of the barn and their own private barnyard.  Their moms enjoy these private quarters where they can nurse their young and bond with them while having access to fresh water and nutritious hay.   An occasional treat of grain, fondly known as sheep crunch, gives them something special to look forward to on a chilly evening.

At the end of December, one of our pure white ewes gave birth to a single white lamb, a male.  A couple of weeks later, one of the brown Katahdin ewes gave birth to single male lamb, brown and white spotted.  Over this past weekend, triplets were born, and possibly there will be more this week.  It is a very cold time for lambing, and we wish it could be otherwise for their entrance into the world.  It seems the ewes have some good sense to hang around the barn when they begin labor, rather than be out in the field.  I hope and pray that this good judgment prevails especially during this week of predicted single digit high temps and very low lows!

I promise to post pictures of some of the lambs soon.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

New Year New Tastes

Sometimes it is fun to try new foods just to break from our routine.  It is easy enough to take an old-standby recipe and just make a few changes to the ingredients.

Several customers have recently tried making their lasagna with ground lamb instead of beef.  If you can imagine the flavor of the Greek dish Moussaka, you can imagine how delicious your new lasagna recipe could be!  You can even try making a mostly vegetarian lasagna and maybe add a layer with some lamb, if you are not sure how you will like it.    You can vary the sauce.   Instead of a red sauce, you could try a white could be like an alfredo, or it could be just a simple roux, or a more complex bechamel.  

Do you have a favorite recipe for tuna-noodle casserole?   This classic recipe can be varied to become a chicken-broccoli bake, a ham and cheese casserole, or even a recipe to use ground lamb!   You do not need to learn a lot of new techniques to make these adaptations, and it is so much fun to experiment! 

Happy New Year!!

I hope everybody enjoyed the holiday season!  The big snow made it tough to travel and to shop, but what a beautiful sight to behold!!

This week is the big thaw.   The sun is out and temperatures are edging toward 40 today with high near 60 expected later in the week!   A great week to do outdoors projects

We have some new products in the store this week, especially in the deli section.  So if you want to try something tasty and quick, stop by to see what is new, including:

  • Tyson Buffalo-style deli chicken wings
  • Amish-made cole slaw
  • Aidell's all-natural, Italian-style chicken meatballs
  • Winter's bun-size Kielbasa
  • Farmland's angus-beef hotdogs
  • Individually flash-frozen, boneless/skinless chicken breasts
  • Diced Ham
We are sorry to report that Chuck and Dave's authentic, Mexican-style tortilla chips are no longer available in the store.   We are trying a new product that is equally delicious, so stop by to try these chips with a big Donkey on the package!!  We have them in the "unsalted" variety.

On the farm, we had a new lamb born a couple of days before the end of 2012!   It was very cold, but he and his Mom are doing just fine in the barn.   They will probably enjoy getting out into the barnyard during this warmup.  I hope to get a few pictuers to post very soon.

Thank you for shopping at Homer Village market in 2012, and we look forward to serving you in 2013!!    If you have any suggestions or special requests, please stop by and let me know!