7 Fun Tips for Olive Oil

We started out with plans to share with you about how healthy olive oil was, and we may just do that in these coming weeks. Olive oil is AMAZING!

For this week, we'd love to share some fun tips on ways to use olive oil that you might not have thought of. Or maybe you have heard some of these...?! We hope at least one creates a light bulb "gotta try that!" moment for you!

We also have a delicious recipe for marinade in the mix - great on meat OR veggies!

 Tip #4 in action!

Tip #4 in action!

TIP #1.
BEAUTY // LOTION. 

Massage olive oil into your skin in place of lotion. Your skin will feel incredibly soft, but make sure to give it a few minutes to settle into your skin completely before getting dressed.

TIP #2.
BEAUTY // MAKEUP REMOVER. 

Simply put a bit of it on a damp cotton pad, and gently rub it in. Wash your face as usual after this, and your skin will be so clean and soft.

TIP #3.
BEAUTY // NAIL STRENGTHENER. 

Rub olive oil into your fingernails (and toenails!) to infuse them with antioxidants and moisture simultaneously. AND keep them extra strong!

TIP #4.
GARNISH. 

Drizzle a bit on top of your soups for a lovely look and of course healthy and delicious addition. A dab will do! We like to use a small squeeze bottle for this so it’s just a thin line like in the picture. 

TIP #5.
STORAGE.

Keep it in a cool, dark place, and make sure not to store it for longer than a year. The sooner you use it, the better!

 TIP #6:
HOW TO REPLACE BUTTER.

You can easily replace butter with olive oil in most recipes. The key is to reduce the amount by 1/4. (i.e. 1 Tbsp  butter = 1/4 Tbsp olive oil)

TIP #7.
MARINADE. (FOR MEAT *OR* VEGGIES)

Use this marinade recipe for meat OR veggies:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil,
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice (or  your favorite vinegar!),
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt,
  • 1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh herbs of your choice,
  • 1 clove minced garlic.

    Bonus tip: Multiply the quantity of this recipe, be extra generous with the fresh herbs (to taste!), blend it up. And voila! An AMAZING dressing. Store it in the fridge in an airtight container, and shake well before using. Use it within 2-3 days.

We hope you enjoy these tips from your VG Family!! :-)

 

Summer Picnic Essentials

Surely you all have had plenty of picnics too, so we hope you’ll share your best ideas of what to bring along with us!! AND that this will inspire you to have a picnic this week, while we still have this amazing summer weather!

AdobeStock_169972996.jpeg

Picnic Essentials Checklist

essentials to enjoy

  • Finger Foods

Ideally, you won’t need silverware or to make a big mess - let it be easy. Some favorites are cheese and crackers, sandwiches, and fruit.

  • Drinks

Our BIG family-sized kombucha bottles (after you’ve enjoyed the kombucha!) are great for bringing drinks along. You could also BRING an actual bottle of kombucha, of course!!

essentials for ease

  • Cups and Plates
  • Utensils
  • Cutting Knife + Small Cutting Board
  • Cloth Napkins
  • Bottle Opener if you're bringing wine/beer along(!)
  • Trash Bag for easy cleanup
  • Blanket                                                                                                   

Friends, you know that every week we have an amazing selection of breads, cheeses, and crackers. But THIS WEEK (only!) we’re doing something extra special for our e-club members.

If you’re not an <<e-club member>> yet, do join in on the fun... It’s FREE, and every week you’ll have something extra special to enjoy.

HINT for this week: it’s all about the cheese ’n crackers!

Friends of Feta (Cheese) + Recipe!

At the bottom of this post, we have a delicious recipe to share with you. But for now, let’s just have a chat about Feta Cheese. :-)

This is one ingredient that can brighten up your whole dish if paired with the right ingredients.

One key is to make sure everything is SUPER fresh, and another is to have the right balance of acid (lemon, apple cider vinegar, tomatoes, etc.) AND fat (olives and olive oil are perfectly paired).

But I’ve also tried feta paired with mint and watermelon, and it was shockingly delicious! Here are some ideas to get you started!

VG_Friends-of-Feta.jpeg

more obvious friends of feta:

  • Red bell peppers
  • Garlic
  • Lemon
  • Tomatoes
  • & Sun-dried tomatoes!
  • As a stuffing in tomatoes
  • Olives
  • & Olive oil!
  • Arugula
  • Cucumbers
  • Red onion
  • Pasta

less obvious pairings:

  • Baked Potatoes
  • Strawberries
  • Peaches
  • Fresh dill
  • Grapes
  • Watermelon
  • Figs
  • Pineapple
  • Eggplant
  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Mint
  • In tortillas with your other ingredients… mmmm
 

Late Summer Salad
with Peaches, Arugula, & Feta

Servings: 4 side salads

 

salad base ingredients

  • 4 cups arugula and/or spinach leaves
  • 2 ripe peaches, quartered
  • 8 fresh figs, quartered
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • (optional, not pictured) thin slivers of purple onion

dressing ingredients

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely ground sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
 

instructions

1/ Whisk salad dressing ingredients in a bowl until well mixed, then toss with arugula and/or spinach leaves.

2/ Top with peaches, figs, and feta + the optional slivers of purple onion.

3/ ENJOY!

 

How to Make Stuffed Tomatoes

With the RIDICULOUSLY mouth-watering tomato harvest at hand, we thought you might enjoy this mini tutorial on how to make stuffed tomatoes! (Especially if you've not made them before!)

VG_Stuffed-Tomatoes.jpeg

Note: For this recipe tutorial, we have not provided a filling recipe for you. You can literally use ANYTHING savory that will fit into a tomato, and rice (as pictured) is an easy go-to option if you have it on hand.

ingredients

  • 8 delicious island tomatoes*
  • approximately 2 cups of filling of your choice
  • cheese to add to the top
  • parsley for garnish

* Of course during late summer, we hope you'd have delicious island tomatoes on hand, but any tomato will work!

instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut a thin sliver off the bottom of your tomatoes. This is simply so that they will sit flat on the plate when you're finished, rather than wobbling over on their sides(!!).
  3. Cut off the tops of your tomatoes. (Note: These AND the tomato seeds in step #3 can be tossed into a blended salad dressing or a nice cold gazpacho!)
  4. Scoop out the seeds, being careful to leave the base intact. The easiest way to do this is to cut a circle with a super-sharp knife, then a grapefruit spoon for scooping.
  5. Add your filling to the inside. We love rice, pâté, or ANY delicious food that can easily fit in a tomato. Let it be easy AND delicious, friends!
  6. Place the filled tomatoes in a glass baking dish, add cheese to the tops of each tomato, and bake in your pre-heated oven for 20-25 minutes.
  7. Add your garnish, and ENJOY!

Easy Peasy Guacamole

Recipe by Éva Raposa

If you have just the main ingredients (or heck, even just salt and avocado!), you have the basics of guacamole covered. But if you’d like the extra spice and freshness, do mix in the optional additions as you like!

  For this much (smooth!) texture, you'll want to follow the full instructions below...

For this much (smooth!) texture, you'll want to follow the full instructions below...

main ingredients

  • 2 ripe avocados, diced
  • sea salt, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice OR apple cider vinegar*

optional additions

  • 1/2 cup delicious, local, organic, chopped island tomato**
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tsp finely chopped jalapeño and/or 2 cloves minced garlic


* The apple cider vinegar is GREAT in a pinch and so easy. Due to the flavor profile (nice and sour!), I often toss in the vinegar just because it’s quick and it WORKS. While it’s perhaps more authentic to use lime juice, I’m admitting this to you in case you have those moments when you’d rather toss in the vinegar too!

** We’re sharing this recipe with you at beginning of a very abundant island tomato harvest. YUM!

 

instructions

  1. Chop or mince ingredients, adding them to your serving bowl. VOILA!
  2. If you’d like a super smooth, not-so-chunky texture, add all of the ingredients to a food processor. Process until your desired texture is reached, and now you can ENJOY!

want to store your guac?!

When attempting to store guacamole for a day or two, the trick is to put the guac in a container that is EXACTLY the same size as the amount of guac you’d like to store. This is because avocado oxidizes quickly, but if you pack an airtight container with less space, there is less air and therefore the oxidation will be much slower. Make sure (of course!) that you store the airtight container in the fridge.

 

Part 3: CBD + Hemp Extract Oil Benefits

This is part 3 of 3 in our mini-series about Hemp Extract Oil. It's also sometimes called CBD oil, due to one of the main components. Read <<part 1 to find out more about the difference between marijuana and hemp extract oil>> (it's actually quite different!) AND a delicious recipe. Check out <<part 2 simply to see one of the people who most inspired us to start carrying hemp extract oil>>. And read on below to find out more about the benefits!

AdobeStock_167366164.jpeg

The three primary ways Hemp Extract Oil affects the body are:

  1. with the receptors in the brain (which are associated with mood, pain, memory, coordination, emotions, and more)
  2. by reducing pain
  3. by reducing inflammation

This is… HUGE. When you think about it, nearly every large challenge in our bodies can be connected with inflammation in some way. 

Some of the following are potential benefits:

  • pain relief
  • reduction of inflammation - which can effect an exhaustive list of challenges and ailments
  • improving recovery time for athletes (article here, which happens to feature the same CBD oil we sell!)
  • helping to let go of addiction to opioids and other drugs
  • treating epilepsy
  • reducing or preventing seizures
  • treating schizophrenia
  • slowing cancer cell growth + promoting the death of existing cancer cells
  • reducing anxiety
  • treating or aiding 
  • treatment in early stages of Alzheimer’s disease

Is hemp extract oil legal? And does it require a “medical marijuana” card for purchase?

In the state of Massachusetts, hemp extract oil is legal and can even be purchased over the counter. This is because it does not have high levels of THC, as marijuana does. While they come from the same family of plants, they are most definitely not the same thing! (You can read here to understand that better. If you’re looking for a “high”, hemp extract oil will not deliver! Its use is purely medicinal!)

Research and Resources:

Note: All of the text below is a clickable link to more information! :-)

Part 2: Have You Heard About Charlotte?!

Screen Shot 2018-06-28 at 11.13.36 AM.png

One of the catalysts for <<our excitement to sell hemp extract at Vineyard Grocer>>, was <<the story of Charlotte>>... We'd like to warn you that her story is a tear-jerker, but don't worry, there is a happy ending...!

*NOTE: As a clarification... in the CNN report, they refer to this as "Medical Marijuana", but we don't find that term to be accurate. In Charlotte's case, her family used low-THC, high-CBD hemp. (It's technically not the same thing as marijuana, and also wouldn't get Charlotte or anyone else "high.")

Part 1: The Truth About Hemp Extract (with a recipe!)

Hello! 

For many months now, we have been in conversations with many of you who have raved about hemp extract and the benefits of CBD. While we initially hesitated to offer it in the store, the more we have learned, it feels good to offer it to you. There is so much misinformation out there, that we hope to clarify a few details here + share some helpful resources for you to learn more. And of course, please don't hesitate to ask us if you have any questions!

Thank you,
Elio & Your VG Family


 yes, it looks like its cousin, but hemp is NOT the same as marijuana...!

yes, it looks like its cousin, but hemp is NOT the same as marijuana...!

Clarification #1: Hemp Leaves are NOT the same plant as marijuana, and CBD will not get you "high".

Hemp and Marijuana are in the same family, but their properties are entirely different. (like cousins who might have similar features but who act VERY different from each other!)

It's the THC in marijuana that creates the sensation of being high, but THC is present in hemp only a tiny fraction of 1%, and it cannot get you high.

Instead you'll find CBD (Cannabidiol), which is "one of the 150+ naturally occurring phytocannabinoids found in certain strains of hemp and in all cannabis plant strains," according to the Wikipedia article about CBD.

And it's the CBD and other phytocannabinoids which offer a medicinal effect so potent that it's being used to manage diabetes, PTSD, anxiety, seizures and epilepsy, and nearly everything you can imagine. (Even infertility + athletic performance due to the faster post-workout recovery times!)


 hemp seeds, lotion, oil, plant, extract... so many truly   different   options from the same plant

hemp seeds, lotion, oil, plant, extract... so many truly different options from the same plant

Clarification #2: Hemp seed oil and hemp extract are quite different!

Hemp is truly an amazing plant (it even was used as part of the clean-up in Chernobyl, the world's worst nuclear disaster to date!), and it can make many different products.

But not all are equal.

Hemp seed OIL (on the surface) looks and sounds a lot like hemp extract, but their properties are quite different. 

Hemp seed oil is made from only the seeds, whereas hemp extract is made from the entire plant. While hemp seed oil is high in omega fatty acids, it includes almost no (or zero!) therapeutic CBD.


 "the world's most trusted hemp extract"!

"the world's most trusted hemp extract"!

We're pleased to offer you the hemp well-known to be the world's most trusted hemp extract.

We have it right at the front register in the store, and you are welcome to peruse our selection. Like literally everything we offer to you, you'll find that our markup is small enough that our prices are often the same or lower than what you might find online.

Right here on island. 😘

If you're in our (free!!) e-Club, you know that we delight in offering you introductory offers. Feel free to join in this week to take part, if you have not already!



 a must-try -&nbsp;we hope you'll enjoy this milkshake!

a must-try - we hope you'll enjoy this milkshake!

+ Green Avocado Milkshake recipe, optionally featuring hemp extract!

This one is absolutely delicious but so very simple, and you can skip the hemp extract if you don't have or want it. 💞

INGREDIENTS
* 3 bananas
* 1 Hass-sized avocado
* 2 cups milk (almond milk, soy milk, or dairy milk all work great!)
* small handful spinach
* 1 cup ice
* 1 dropper of Hemp Extract

INSTRUCTIONS
Blend until smooth, and enjoy!