The holiday season is in full swing, and Whole Foods wants to make the experience as seamless as possible for its shoppers. The organic supermarket chain has launched a bevy of seasonally inspired menus, available online or in store, through December 29.
"Our offerings have definitely gotten bigger throughout the years," says Brian Collaro, the prepared-foods coordinator for Whole Foods Market’s Florida region. "We always like to offer different dishes to keep things new and fresh."
Whether you're looking for ingredients to make a dish from scratch or you're on the run and in need of a less stressful meal alternative, Collaro says there's a good chance Whole Foods has what you're looking for. It's also the second year the supermarket chain is offering a majority of its dishes made completely with organic ingredients.
"Now we have all different fixings that are completely organic," he says. "Gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and more. It's something customers really wanted, so we made it happen."
Collaro recommends trying stuffed Brie, which he says is perfect for any occasion. Choose from the cranberry walnut and fig, which is made with grass-fed double crème Brie, stuffed with fig spread, and topped with cranberries and caramelized walnuts; the pear and herbes de provence, stuffed with pear marmalade and topped with herbes de provence; or the basil pesto and pine nut, filled with fresh local basil pesto from Pesto Diva and pine nuts. Small, which serves four to six and costs $12, and large, serving eight to ten for $25, are offered for each flavor.
"It's just great to put in the center of the table," he says. "And they're perfect as a December holiday dish for parties or get-togethers."
Brie aside, expect specially made items for Christmas and Hanukkah, along with dishes for generic December holiday gatherings too. A plethora of platters and entrées including spiral ham, 72-hour beef boneless short rib, cheese and veggie platters, croquetas, and empanaditas — will be offered through the end of December.
There's also a bake shop, offering handmade pies, cakes, and sweet and savory breads. Pies include traditional pumpkin and spice, signature apple, chocolate pecan, and vegan pumpkin and spice. Make room to try the pumpkin cheesecake or Midnight in Miami cakes too.
Because the holiday menus vary for each state, Collaro says shoppers should take advantage of Florida's stone crab this season. "When you think Florida, you think stone crab," he says. "And when you leave the state, you don’t see that on our other holiday menus. It's one of our best-kept secrets."
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From November 27 to December 12, a Hanukkah menu will be available. Dishes such as a smoked salmon platter, beef brisket with red wine sauce, latkes, and noodle kugel will be offered.
"Whole Foods is a great place to come to elevate your holiday meal," he says. "You'll find something special for the center of your table, like a 'wow' factor."
For more information about items and ordering, visit wholefoods.com.
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