Highland Foods Blog

New England Food Show

March 13, 2014

Highland Foods is headed down to Boston to attend the New England Food Show March 16 - 18, 2014. We look forward to meeting some new faces and expanding our distribution through contacts with wholesalers and distributors. The show is in a building adjacent to the Boston Seafood Show being held at the same time. We hope to “catch” some new accounts at that show as well!

Here on the coast of Maine we have had yet another winter storm, this one spreading freezing rain and drifting snow, and mounds of snow in the mountains. We love winter in Maine.

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Highland Foods, LLC Opens New Accounts!

February 7, 2014

We are pleased to announce that we have opened some new accounts: Parker’s Maple Barn Restaurant in Mason, NH and Wendel’s Poultry Farm in East Concord, NY.

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Winter Update

January 26, 2014

It has been a wild winter here on the coast of Maine. We’ve had blizzards, rain storms, freezing cold temperatures, and spring like days. The holiday season kept us more than busy and we have barely had time to wind down from that as we prepare for the New England Food Show and Seafood Show in Boston March 16 - 18, 2014. We are excited about the show and expanding our markets, speaking of which, thank you to those who recommended stores for us to contact in your area. We have a number of followups to do!

Be sure to check out our FACEBOOK page for recipes and comments from our customers. We are excited to share that one of our customers recently published a book called The Sugarmaker’s Companion. Author Michael Farrell is a sugarmaker and director of the Uihlein Forest at Cornell University. Michael includes both text and a photo of Maple Pepper® in his book.

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Think Snow!

December 14, 2013

Here on the coast of Maine we are hunkering down for our first big snow of the season. The weatherman predicts 6-14 inches. You’ve gotta love it. After all, it is winter and in winter it snows. We take the weather come what may - rain, snow, warm, cold. There is a saying here in New England, though I am sure this holds true for other places: if you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute and it’ll change. Variety - the spice of life.

We send warm wishes to you all this holiday season, whether you are spending the season with family and friends, on the ski slopes or a Caribbean cruise, or snug at home. Thank you for another wonderful year. We look forward to hearing from you this season and in the new year.

All the best to you, The Highland Foods Crew - Stewart, Mark, Sue and Alison

p.s. Don’t forget to check our FACEBOOK page. We are up to 453 friends and counting. Try out some of our recipes, see photos from the year, and read posts from us and comments from friends.

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Our Customers Say it Best!

November 4, 2013

We always love to hear from our customers. You say it best. Here are a few recent quotes:

“Grilled fish of any variety always tastes better with Maple Pepper with Habenero! It has just the right heat and the maple taste compliments the fish to perfection!!”

“When friends ask what makes our food so delicious, we tell them Maple Pepper… Then we have to hide the jar or it ends up going home with them! It’s a great stocking stuffer - if we are willing to part with a jar or two.”

“This seasoning makes any dish extra special in flavor, I use it for most of my dinner cooking and would highly recommend it!”

“Sweet corn is wonderful in the summer. Maple pepper makes it so much better. We won’t eat sweet corn without it.”

“My husband and I really fell in love with how the Maple Pepper w/Garlic flavors any food we use it on. It’s especially good on eggs!”

“I love the original Maple Pepper. I originally found it years ago in a New Hampshire White Mountains store. Every year I couldn’t wait to get some more when we visited NH again. Then all of a sudden I had a hard time [trying] to find it. I did eventually track it down. Everyone I have ever given it to for a gift has just loved it. It’s really a very special spice.”

What do you have to say about our Maple Pepper seasonings? Let us know ...

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Maple Pepper® with Habanero is HOTTER Than Ever!

September 27, 2013

This quote just in from Bickford’s Family Restaurant in Massachusetts:

> Hi Alison - could you please send another 4 lbs of the habanero maple pepper? Customers at our Burlington location love the wings rubbed with this seasoning!

Maple Pepper® with Habanero is on a roll. We love it! With the fall weather coming on, it is time to start thinking of stews, chilis and chowders. Our seasonings are a great addition to your favorites, whether it is beef, vegetarian, clam or fish. And we are always thinking of new Maple Pepper® concoctions. Here is one for you: Your favorite hot chocolate recipe spiked with a few dashes of Maple Pepper® with Habanero. Now that is hot!

Happy fall everyone.

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Maple Pepper® with Habanero is HOT!!!

September 20, 2013

We have recently received two glowing emails about our Maple Pepper® with Habanero and want to share them with you.

> Dear Alison,

My wife recently brought home a 3 oz container of your Maple Pepper With Habanero, oh my God that is to die for. I’ve gone though about two ounces of it already! I put it on everything, eggs, potatoes, chicken, pork and salad, just to name a few. Just wanted to tell you how very much I enjoy your product. Thank you.

> OMG the habanero pepper is absolutely fantastic. I can’t stop using it! Bought it in Ellsworth and now will look for it sold around my home. Wish me luck! >

And there you have it!

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The Waning Days of Summer

September 16, 2013

Wow! What a summer it has been here on the coast of Maine. We’ve been sailing and fishing, vacationing in Canada,traveling to food shows, meeting some of our wholesale customers, and a lot more. Summer is winding down. You can feel it in the air, especially today. It is chilly; sweater weather for sure.

We hope you are viewing our FACEBOOK page now and then. We have been making regular entries and posting photos so if you have not done so, why not take a look? We heard from one satisfied customer just last eve. Torrey Janssen, a new customer, wrote us to say: “OMG the habanero pepper is absolutely fantastic. I can’t stop using it! Bought it in Ellsworth and now will look for it sold around my home. Wish me luck!”

It is never too early to start thinking about shopping for the upcoming holidays. Spread the good cheer of Maple Pepper® Brand Seasoning this holiday season by sharing it with family and friends. As always, thank you for reading. Stay in touch.

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Summer Fancy Food Show Follow Up

July 3, 2013

We had a grand time on June 30 at the Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City. There were many exhibits featuring specialty food and drinks from around the world. We sampled everything from Scottish whiskey to Italian cheeses, and California beers to Maine chocolates. The whole experience was delightful and we plan to go back again next year, perhaps with our own booth!

We wish you all a very happy and safe Fourth of July. Be sure to check our FACEBOOK page for recipe ideas and more. Also, as we look to expand out product line, it is always fun to get ideas from our customers. If you have an idea for a new Maple Pepper® flavor, by all means send it along by posting to our FACEBOOK page or sending us an email.

Thank you as always!

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Highland Foods is off to the New York City Fancy Food Show

June 28, 2013

We have an exciting few days ahead of us as we travel to New York City to attend the Summer Fancy Food Show. You can check out the show at (http://www.specialtyfood.com/fancy-food-show/ “Summer Fancy Food Show”). There will be an incredible 180,000 products represented by 2400 exhibitors from around the world.

We love Maine summers and expect many of you do as well, venturing this way to enjoy the shore, forests, rivers and lakes. It is always fun to meet our customers so if you know you will be in our neck of the woods and want to drop by, please let us know ahead of time.

There are plenty of summer cookouts and lobster bakes ahead of us. Maple Pepper® is the ultimate summer seasoning whether you are cooking up steak, fish or poultry. Fresh vegetables roasted over a grill with some olive oil and Maple Pepper® is a must and don’t forget corn on the cob. Butter and Maple Pepper® on your ear is a taste sensation you just can’t beat.

Have a happy and safe summer everyone and stay in touch!

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Spring is Here!

April 6, 2013

Spring is always a welcome season here in New England. There remain a few scattered patches of snow in the fields but things are slowly warming up. The red winged black birds and buzzards are back while we await the osprey and peepers. The garden is ready for an early planting of hardy greens. It is time to think about getting the boats ready for summer, and the lawn furniture on the back terrace. We made a dent in the woodpile this winter but with the warmer temperatures, there is still plenty stacked for next year.

We had some true blue snow storms this past winter. We especially loved the big blizzard in February. Great weather for hot chocolate and Maple Pepper® popcorn! We attended the New England Products Trade Show in March. We saw old friends and made some new ones. Trade show attendees sampled Maple Pepper® on fresh fruit; mixed in a cream cheese, sour cream and yogurt dip for cucumbers; and in olive oil for dipping French bread.

We have some changes in store for this year. Stay tuned for our new website. Be sure to check our FACEBOOK page for new recipes. Happy spring!

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Tis the Season

December 30, 2012

Tis the season for good cheer, food, merriment and times with friends and family. We had a sugar dusting of snow here on Christmas Day but since then, two snow storms. It has been perfect for cross country and downhill skiing. Shoveling the drive and walkways is a welcome chore as we work off those extra holiday calories. We know many of you are enjoying your holidays with jars of Maple Pepper® under your tree, in your stocking, and on the dinner table.

As we close out the year and ring in the new, we would like to thank all of you, our loyal customers. It is always a pleasure to do business with you. We know our Maple Pepper® has traveled far and wide this year, from close to home to California, to Germany, Scotland, Austria and Canada.

We look forward to introducing you to a new look and product line in the coming months. Be sure to check back now and then for updates, as well as our FACEBOOK page for new recipes and photos.

Happy Holidays!

Alison, Stewart, Mark, Sue and Maddy

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They love us in California!

November 27, 2012

> Your Seasonings are such a hit, especially at all the special events that we have been doing for the holidays.Do you have any other products* that you sell? If so could you send me the information on them. We have a Health Food Store interested in your products as well as a “Pig Farmer” who has a large customer base following a “Paleo Diet”..

Katrina Morgan, Three Leaves and a Tree, Valley Center, CA

*The New Year is nearly upon us and with that, Highland Foods looks forward to introducing at least three new products to our Maple Pepper® Brand Seasoning line. Stay tuned!

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Is it that time of year already?

November 10, 2012

No one could say it better than our customers. Just today we received a product inquiry from Anik:

> Thank you! I bought some of your product for every family member’s stocking last year in North Conway…now this year they’re all asking for more, and I needed to find somewhere closer.

Thanks for such a great product! :)

Anik >

It is hard to believe we are approaching that time of year again. The holidays can be an overwhelmingly joyous time, overwhelmingly because of all the to dos we have this time of year.

  • winterize the house
  • put the summer gardens to bed
  • top off the woodpile
  • pull out the winter woolies
  • plan meals and think about purchasing those gifts!

Food and gifts! So much and so many. What better way to take the edge off some of that holiday stress you may already be feeling than to stock up early on Maple Pepper®. It tastes great on many of your holiday foods - the traditional and then the traditional with a Maple Pepper® twist, like that marvelously delicious and award winning Maple Pepper® Eggnog recipe a customer shared with us last year.

So plan ahead like Anik and get your Maple Pepper® today. Make your holiday shopping “Pure and Simple” with Maple Pepper®. The products ship easily, are non-perishable and just the right size for the stocking. Remember we have our handy gift boxes too, sized for three jars of your favorite flavors. ...

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Fall is in bloom in our neck of the woods.

October 21, 2012

Most of this summer’s leaves have changed to reds, yellows, and oranges, once gracing the trees and now the ground. Only the oak leaves hang on in their earthy browns. The air is crisp as the days grow shorter and the temperatures fall. We’ve had some good rowing and sailing days of late but even those are winding down.

Maine is the way life should be in the fall with pumpkin and oyster festivals, mountain hikes and cider pressing. The wood is stacked and the fields are brown, awaiting the first flakes of winter. Farm stands abound with winter squash - pumpkins, old hubbard, acorn, butternut, buttercup. Winter squash and Maple Pepper® go so well together, whether your recipe calls for soup, baking, broiling or mashing. One of our favorite recipes is acorn squash, baked with a dollop of butter and a hearty shake of Maple Pepper®. And when it comes time to carve your Jack-o’-Lantern, be sure to save the seeds. You can make a tasty treat if you spread the seeds out on a cookie sheet with a touch of olive oil and Maple Pepper®. Bake till crispy. Better than popcorn so some of our customers say.

A bit of Halloween trivia: The practice of decorating “jack-o’-lanterns” (the name comes from an Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack) originated in Ireland, where haunting faces, illuminated by candles, were carved on large turnips and potatoes. Irish immigrants brought the tradition to America where the canvas ...

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Summer Slip Slides into Fall

September 15, 2012

The fruits of our garden labors are busting out all over! Corn on the cob, tomatoes, greens, beets, and the list goes on. Any and all of these fresh garden veggies deserve a hardy shake of our Maple Pepper® seasoning.

It is always nice to hear from our loyal customers. Some of you like to order on line. That’s great. Some of you inquire as to whether the products are available in stores in your area. Often times the products are, but not always. We continue to expand our distribution and with your help, can target stores in your area. Please let us know if you have a particular store in mind and we will be sure to contact them. Thanks!

We came across a customer’s blog - Fun and Fearless in Beantown - and found a delectable recipe for Maple Pepper® and Habanero Chicken Breast with Maple Syrup Brussel Sprouts. Here is the link to the blog. http://funandfearlessinbeantown.blogspot.com/2010/03/maple-pepper-and-habanero-chicken.html

As you know, we post Maple Pepper® recipes on our website. Some of them come from our own kitchen, some from you. Be sure to send your favorite recipe along and we’ll post it, crediting you of course! Send along a photo with the recipe and we’ll post that as well.

In the words of Julia Childs, “This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook- try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!”

Don’t forget to check us out ...

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Summer time and the living is easy in Maine.....but it is too hot and time to get serious.

July 18, 2012

Summer is in all of its glory here on the Maine coast. Local farmers’ markets are bursting with fresh produce and home baked goods, the beaches are speckled with happy sunbathers, sailboats grace the seas, and lobsters and clams rule the dinner plate. It has been a warm summer with the occasional downpour. While summer is meant to be warm, this year is more so than usual. And that has us concerned. Concerned about climate change and its impact on our environment, including the crops we grow and the seafood we harvest. Concerned about the impacts on maple sugaring here in New England. Climate change is here. While it is unstoppable, we can make a difference in the rate in which it changes. How? By reducing our own carbon footprint, yes our own. We need to focus on our local communities, commit ourselves to self sufficiency and sustainability. The local food movement is one such important and easy way to make a difference: growing our own fruits, vegetables, and meats or buying those grown by our local farmers. Local foods are better tasting and better for you. So do your part: grow your own or buy local. We do, so can you!☺ And of course those local foods will taste even better seasoned with our Maple Pepper® Brand Seasonings.

Click here for a list of farmers’ markets in Maine.

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A Memorable Memorial Day in Maine

May 28, 2012

What a gorgeous day here in Maine in spite of the black flies who seem to be enjoying this warmer weather as well. The boats are back on their moorings and the sails have been set. Kayaks speckle our rivers, lakes and ocean shore. Folks are out paddling their stand up paddle boards while others take to the beach to ride the surf. The ocean is warm enough for swimming!

The parades of the morning are over and the afternoon brings summer fun and prep time for the first cookout of the season. We plan to cook up some of those watermelon hamburgers we shared with you in a past blog entry. Our favorite side dish will be fresh roasted corn on the cub coated with butter and our Maple Pepper® seasonings.

We wish you all well as we begin this 2012 summer season. Eat drink and be merry and don’t forget to include that old standby, Maple Pepper® wherever good food is found.

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Summer Time in April

April 17, 2012

Our mild winter has blossomed into a summer spring. Here in Maine we are already mowing lawns, swatting black flies, drinking ice tea and lolling in the hammock. The garden is planted. It is now up to the sun and rain to do their jobs.

We are thankful for the recipes our customers have shared with us over the years. We continue to post them as they come in. We made up a fun recipe at a recent tradeshow to sample with watermelon and oranges. The recipe calls for one part cream cheese and four parts yogurt, a lemon squeeze, and Maple Pepper® to taste. The dip goes well with vegetables, crackers and pretzels too. After the show we glazed a salmon fillet with the left over dip before baking, and mixed it in with our mashed potatoes. As usual, our recipes can be spread far and wide thanks to the versatility of our Maple Pepper® seasonings.

We have another fried chicken recipe to share so stay tuned. We give thanks to a gifted chef who dares to go where no chef has gone before! Give him an apron, a jar Maple Pepper® and plenty of room in the kitchen and voilà! A new masterpiece is born.

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Bluebirds in February

February 21, 2012

Good morning. It is a beautifully blue winter day with a pair of bluebirds checking out their nesting box, flying in and out of the box. It has been an unusually warm and snowless winter here. Has mother nature tricked these birds into thinking it’s bird nesting time? Let’s hope not. Nevertheless, spring is on its way, this year likely coming sooner than later.

Spring time means garden preparation and planting hearty greens such as kale, spinach, lettuce and peas. The first spring planting is always an exciting time here. Working the soil with your hands, taking in the sweet smells of the land and air, making rows and planting the seeds. And then the anticipation of the first sprouts poking up under their shallow blanket of clean earth. Soon after, they blaze your garden with their delicate greens and reds.

What could be tastier than a fresh spring salad or sugar snap peas? You can eat them right out of the garden or toss them in a salad bowl with a simple salad dressing. A mix of balsamic vinegar, olive oil, Maple Pepper® and a dash of basil is the perfect dressing for such an occasion. One of our favorite spring time treats is fresh kale, seasoned with a brush of Maple Pepper® salad dressing, and lightly broiled just until crispy. Eat as is - kale chips - or crumble over your salad or baked potato with a dollop of sour cream or a pat of butter. ...

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