Tuesday, April 2, 2013


This past Saturday, my friends MJ and Anne invited me to go with them to a local old-fashioned country store that sells organic, Amish, and other premium products such as flours, spices, sugars, cereals, candies, dried fruits, nuts, and snacks at budget-friendly prices. It's only about 10 minutes from my home. The shop also sells fresh-baked goods, produce, meats, and cheeses. While catching up over blueberry tea, coffee, and cinnamon rolls, Anne showed us her latest quilting project—these lovely potholders made with 1800s reproduction fabrics. I immediately recognized them as some of the fabric I gifted her when she first got into quilting. When a friend shows an interest in quilting, I always like to give them a bundle of fabric—or several yards, if possible—to help them catch the quilting bug! I thought Anne did a wonderful job on them, so I just had to snap this photo.

Anne, MJ, and I spent a couple hours shopping the aisles, which were filled with specialty baking supplies and grains like coconut flour, spelt, and turbinado sugar, which can be harder to find in regular grocery stores. Anne likes to use the turbinado sugar to roll cookies in or to top muffins with. She is a fabulous baker and cook, who has won many a blue ribbon with her culinary creations at the Iowa State Fair. MJ also enjoys cooking and bought a bunch of the spelt.

Here is their spice section with just about any color of sanding sugar you could imagine, including my favorite pink!

I was also amazed by their selection of baking chips and am sure I'll be heading back for more of those.

While searching for the pasta aisle to see if they had any of the kind I like to use in my romaine lettuce salad, I spotted these bags of homemade egg noodles, including a spinach version. 

Had to get a container of candy to satisfy my hubby's sweet tooth. That wasn't hard to find among their huge selection of candies ranging from pink grapefruit gummy bears to yogurt-covered raisins.

I saw lots of items that I have never seen before--like these mustard eggs. Don't think I'm adventurous enough to try that one. 

We were delighted to find seeds from Seed Savers Exchange, located right here in Iowa. It brought back memories of writing an article on saving seeds many years ago when I interviewed the owner of SSE. 

I also got a large package of golden flax seeds for only a $1.30. I had heard from my sister, who is really into healthy eating, that they are very good for you, so thought I'd give them a try. The sign near them said that they can be put into cereals and other foods such as yogurt, fruit, smoothies, and muffins. The golden kind supposedly has a nuttier flavor, so I decided to buy that one. Also found some of my favorite pasta noodles and a blueberry cheesecake mix. Yum! Before we knew it, five hours had passed and it was time to go home.  What a great way to spend a rainy Saturday morning!