Friday, July 25, 2014

A Good Day to Make Wine Slushies

Adults all over the nation are enjoying wine slushies at their State fairs and summer festivals.  If you have never tried one, you are missing a real treat.  Kids enjoy slushies made with fruit-flavored simple syrups made of sugar, water, and ice.  Adults are just grown-up kids when it comes to enjoying a slushy in the summer!

All you need is a blender, some sweet red or white wine, a little bit of your favorite fruit, a freezer, and a little bit of time.....about an hour or so, unless you want to blend in some shaved ice.  If you really like it sweet, you can add some powdered sugar.  You can use fresh or frozen berries, peaches, or even canned peaches or pears. 

Crush your sliced fruit or whole berries in a blender with a little bit of sweet wine to help it blend smoothly.  Then add the whole bottle of wine and blend until combined.  Pour the sweet concoction into a shallow freezer-safe casseroles or pie plates and place on the freezer shelf for about 30 minutes.  Take it out of the freezer and scrape the mixture with a fork.  Replace in the freezer. Repeat a couple more times and then divide the slushy mixture into glasses to enjoy!

Another method is to blend the sweet wine with ice cubes in the blender to make it into a slushy that is ready to drink right from the blender!  Still another method is to blend fruit and wine in a blender as in the previous recipe, but instead of freezing it in a shallow dish, pour into ice cube trays.  When you want a slushy, all you need to do is toss a handful or two of the sweet ice cubes into the blender and pour into glasses.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Did You Know?

Forty-six facts you should know about Homer Village Market.  (Or...maybe you knew but forgot!) 

  1. The store was first ESTABLISHED in 2006 selling cold soft drinks, shelf-stable foods, tobacco products, farm-stand produce, and general store merchandise.
  2. In 2008, we implemented the requirements to become a LICENSED Retail Food Establishment so we would be permitted by law to sell refrigerated and frozen foods.
  3. In 2010, we obtained a license for mobile food service and became CERTIFIED in food safety.
  4. In 2014, after a successful LOCAL OPTION ELECTION, we obtained BEER & WINE retail carryout permits for our location.  The rest of the township is still considered "dry" status.
  5. The store is OPEN all year:  Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall.  HOURS are scheduled each season and are posted on our door as well as website, facebook page, and available in the store  upon request. Typical hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. six days per week, sometimes longer in summer and shorter in winter. Sometimes the store is open 7 days per week due to receiving. The store is usually closed on major HOLIDAYS, such as Christmas, Thanksgiving and sometimes Mother's Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Fourth of July, except by appointment. 
  7. Our WEBSITE address is
  8. Our FACEBOOK page address is
  9. YES, we are licensed to sell BEER ON SUNDAYS (as well as throughout the week).
  10. We have a good variety of domestic, regional, and imported WINE in addition to domestic, local, regional and imported BEER.  We sell both at the lowest prices permitted by State law. Our wine permit also allows us to offer prepackaged COCKTAILS and 40-proof spirits for carryout (except Sundays).
  11. We also offer an assortment of the most popular brands of CIGARETTES, smokeless tobacco products, and cigars at STATE MINIMUM prices. We have no e-cigs or loose tobacco.
  12. We accept SNAP benefits (aka Ohio Direction Card, FOOD STAMPS) for eligible items (food including nonalcoholic beverages, snacks, ice).
  13. We accept debit and CREDIT CARDS and cash but NO CHECKS.
  14. We have FOOD staples such as milk, bread, lunch meat, pasta, produce, canned foods, bottled beverages, cereal, coffee, tea, ice cream, and condiments.
  15. You can buy premade SANDWICHES and SNACKS to go.  We also have a commercial microwave to heat your sandwich.
  16. You can get a hot cup of COFFEE for only $1.
  17. In addition to the Pepsi vending machine outside the store, inside the store you can find bottles and cans of cold PEPSI products, tea, water, Gatorade, juice, coffee drinks, and bottled water in the cooler.
  18. We carry a variety of commonly needed BAKING INGREDIENTS, such as
    • Flour
    • Sugar
    • Cooking Oil
    • Butter, Margarine and Crisco shortening
    • Yeast
    • Cake Mixes
    • Chocolate chips
    • Prepared Frosting
    • Vanilla
    • Spices
  19. We offer a variety of PRODUCE all year around and others seasonally:
    • Potatoes
    • Onions
    • Lettuce
    • Tomatoes
    • Carrots
    • Canned vegetables
    • Fresh and canned fruit
    • Dried fruit and roasted nuts
  20. We stock over 14 brands of CANDY bars and another dozen brands of candy and cookies.
  21. There is a shelf devoted to LOCAL/regional pickles, jams, jellies, chutneys, salsa, syrup, etc.
  22. We carry ROSSI PASTA and several of Rossi's gourmet sauces (Marietta, Ohio).
  23. PET FOOD:  We offer dry and canned cat and dog food.
  24. NO SHOPPING CARTS are necessary in our store because you can almost reach the check-out counter from any aisle!  The store display area is only about 250 square feet!
  25. You do not have to stoop or reach for anything--all you need to do is ASK FOR SERVICE.  Our frozen meat/seafood section is not self-service due to the limited display space. Let us help you find what you want or let us show you what we have.
  26. We have FROZEN SEAFOOD, POULTRY and MEAT as well as SAUSAGES and meat snacks.
  27. The LAMB that we sell is naturally raised and pastured on our own LOCAL FARM.  It is processed, packaged, labeled, weighed, and frozen at a USDA inspected local facility.
  28. You can choose from over 15 varieties of pre-packaged CHEESE and a half dozen kinds of prepackaged DELI SALADS in our cooler.
  29. You can buy HOUSEHOLD SUPPLIES for wrapping and storing food as well as paper and cleaning products.
  30. There is even a "BATH AND BODY" section where you can find an assortment of basic products for men, women, and children.
  31. We have some commonly needed AUTOMOTIVE fluids as well as charcoal, lighter fluid, ice, and batteries.
  32. We offer OVER-THE-COUNTER drug products such as pain relievers, digestive relief, cough drops, skincare, and first-aid products.
  33. We have a BULLETIN BOARD inside the store for use by customers who have local businesses to advertise or to promote nonpartisan, nondenominational events open to the public.
  34. We can SPECIAL-ORDER for you any large quantities of food, beverages, or specialty products with one week's notice. 
  35. All of our refrigerated and frozen foods are manufactured/processed by USDA INSPECTED SUPPLIERS and safely transported and delivered refrigerated or frozen.
  36. Homer Village Market is equipped with commercial, FOOD-SAFETY APPROVED equipment and is inspected by the local and state government authorities.
  37. Homer Village Market is protected by a state-of-the-art SECURITY SYSTEM which is monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  38. The store is AIR CONDITIONED in the summer and HEATED in the winter for a constant temperature below 70 degrees for the comfort of our customers and the quality of our products.
  39. For the directionally challenged without GPS:  The store is LOCATED  5 miles south of Brandon, 5 miles north of Fredonia, 10 miles south of Mount Vernon, 10 miles north of Granville, 4 miles southwest of Utica, 15 miles northeast of Newark, 30 miles north-east of Columbus, 10 miles northeast of Johnstown, and about a half mile from the Homer Volunteer Fire Department and EMS.  Our storefront faces State Route 661, two miles north of State Route 62 (flashing light)  at the intersection with Homer Road (diagonally across the street from the Homer Post Office). We are in Licking County, Burlington Township, about 3 miles south of the Knox County line.
  40. NO PUBLIC RESTROOMS are available at the store.  Sorry, (You can thank the Ohio EPA).
  41. PARKING is available in the adjacent parking lot or across the street on Homer Road N.W.
  42. NO LOTTERY tickets are available at the store at this time.
  43. There is usually NO WAITING in line to check-out your purchase. 
  44. We appreciate you, and you are treated with COURTESY, respect, and friendly service.  In consideration of any customers who may be waiting, we strive to offer prompt and efficient service and checkout.
  45. We offer convenience but at LOWER PRICES than a typical "convenience store."
  46. We use LOCAL SUPPLIERS, so the money you spend in the store benefits our state and local economy.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Alligator and Frog Legs

Now that Summer grilling is in full swing, many customers are stopping by the store for wild-caught Louisiana Alligator meat and frogs legs.  Many people ask, "How do you cook it?"

There are dozens of recipes online if you google on alligator or frogs legs.  One of  my trusted sources for recipes is the Food Network.   Many enjoy alligator bites, battered and fried, just as they prepare them in the taverns down south.  Others like to put them on the grill with some Cajun seasoning. 

We enjoy alligator bites stir-fried with onions and hot peppers in a garlic-black bean sauce, served over a bed of steamed rice.   If you want to enjoy an "unadulterated version" of alligator, just toss a few medallions in a skillet to brown both sides and cook them through.  Be careful not to overcook it or else it will be chewy and tough.  Seafood cooks rather quickly. It will have the consistency of a tender pork chop.   Try making a sandwich with the alligator topped with lettuce, tomato, bacon, and mayonnaise.  If you like cheese, provolone is a good choice.

Frogs legs also are good lightly battered and fried.  I like mine with cocktail sauce.  Another favorite way to prepare frogs legs would be in a creole dish.  Cut the pair of frogs legs into two legs and then sauté them in butter and garlic until almost done, just a few minutes per side.  Then add a diced tomato and some Cajun seasoning that includes paprika and ground hot pepper.  Simmer a few minutes to blend the seasonings.  Chopped parsley and a squeeze of lemon can be added when you serve this and it goes nicely with steamed rice.

Frogs legs are also very good on the grill.  The larger size frogs legs may be better for the grill as they are easier to turn and less likely to get overcooked.

If you have a recipe to share, please stop by the store and let me know!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Where Did June Go?

The store has been crazy busy since Memorial Day weekend, and now we just celebrated the Fourth of July!  Summer is already speeding ahead of me.  The first weekend in July was another perfect-weather weekend to celebrate Independence Day, which fell on a Friday this year.  What did you do?

The store was closed for the Fourth, so I spent time with family.  Later in the weekend, I enjoyed a morning stroll around the newly mown hay field on our farm.  An evening bonfire lit up our backyard and kept the mosquitoes away for a few hours.

Be sure to stop by and see all the new items in the store!  I love the hectic pace of summer and the chance to bring in more and more stock.  Please remember, we do take requests!

Hope to see you soon!