Tuesday, November 13, 2012

20 foods I wish I could buy at Costco

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I am a loyal, dedicated, tireless Costco shopper. I truly love Costco. I hit Costco once or twice a month and buy most of our meat, fish, produce, canned goods and household cleaners there.

Between Costco, the farmers' market and the family-owned neighborhood market a few blocks from our house, I can get just about everything my family needs. But not everything. So, Costco purchasing team, here's my wish list. If you stock the things below, I guarantee I will buy them on just about every trip. And I bet a lot of other folks will too.
  1. Flour in smaller bags. I've tried the huge sacks and they just don't work for me. I bake a lot and probably go through at least a few pounds of flour a week. But I don't have the time to transfer 25 pounds of flour into smaller containers or zip-top bags. Have you thought about bundling a quartet of 5-pound bags together instead of selling one huge bag? I would buy those for sure. I've got plenty of room to store them in my extra Supermom refrigerator in the basement. 
  2. Sugar in smaller bags. Ditto.
  3. Wheat germ. I sprinkle wheat germ on oatmeal, use it to coat chicken and fish, add it to pancakes and bread dough and pizza. I really like wheat germ. A nice big 5-pound bag would be fantastic. Not the honey coated wheat germ, though - just the plain stuff.
  4. Take-and-bake pizzas that actually fit in my oven. I have to cut your pizzas in half to fit them in the oven, which means I can't bake them as you suggest directly on the rack. Also, a lot of the cheese runs off on the cut side. How about two smaller pizzas packaged together?
  5. Pork belly. It's a thing. 
  6. Freshly sliced cold cuts. The packaged turkey breast is dry and salty. The packaged roast beef tastes funny. The packaged ham is watery. Would it be so hard to devote a corner of that huge butcher room to slicing some cold cuts fresh?
  7. Kerrygold Naturally Softer butter. You had it for a while and my husband got addicted. Now it's gone and he's miserable. Please bring it back.
  8. Raw whole duck. You sell chickens, turkeys, cows, pigs, fish. How about throwing a few raw ducks into the mix? I'd settle for raw duck breast. 
  9. Fresh herbs. A mixed pack with parsley, cilantro, scallions, dill, tarragon, thyme and basil would fly off the shelves. I would buy it on every single trip.
  10. Tanimura and Antle Artisan Romaine. This is my new favorite lettuce - it's got the taste of romaine with a superior crunch and tightly packed heads like iceberg. You sell other Tanimura and Antle lettuce already. Ask them to add this one to the mix. 
  11. Really good thickly sliced bacon. I'm talking an artisan bacon, maybe applewood smoked, thickly cut. Sell it in the butcher section. It will fly off the shelves.
  12. Frozen all-butter puff pastry. The kind without chemicals. It's expensive but well worth it. You could demo it in store by wrapping it around sticks of smoked sausage or baking it with a little chocolate in the middle.
  13. Frozen pie crusts. Even the most avid home cooks sometimes need a leg up when it comes to pie crust. Find the best frozen one and stock it.
  14. High quality dark chocolate chips. The Nestle Toll House chocolate chips are okay, but I like mine darker and less sweet. Callebaut and Valrhona make nice ones. How about 2-pound bags?
  15. Unsweetened chocolate. Not the cheap "baking chocolate" I can get at the grocery store. I'm talking Belgian or French, preferably in little discs that melt easily. 
  16. Unsweetened cocoa powder. Again, not the cheap grocery store stuff - we foodies need something with oomph. I like Valrhona, but that's me. Yes, it's expensive, but I'm willing to pay.
  17. Whole wheat pasta. I love the six-bag bundles of Italian dry pasta, but I'm trying to feed my family whole grains as often as possible. Can't you do something similar with whole wheat pasta?
  18. Frozen chopped spinach. This is the one frozen vegetable I use all the time. If you don't want to put it in big bags, how about bundling six or eight standard-size boxes together?
  19. Frozen artichoke hearts. Ditto. The marinated artichoke hearts are phenomenal but sometimes I want the vegetable on its own.
  20. Donuts. You already sell muffins, bread, croissants, cake, cookies and pies in your bakery. Why not donuts? Glazed, chocolate glazed, chocolate old-fashioned, frosted with sprinkles, jelly donuts...you get the idea. I'm pretty sure if you put a donut stand inside every Costco you'd see a big jump in revenues.
Thanks for listening, Costco. And let me know what I can do to help. I know people. I can hook you up.


Andrew @ Eating Rules said...

I've found really great whole wheat pasta at Costco before -- but I think it was the one in Redlands, not in Marina Del Rey (clearly, not worth the drive!). That same store had 3 pound bags of Bob's Red Mill Quinoa, so you know I was a happy camper.

I'd suggest not getting your wheat germ in 5-pound bags -- I know you use a lot of it, but it would probably go rancid before you made your way through that much!

marianne said...

OMG the best list thanks

Erika Kerekes said...

@Andrew, I see the quinoa at the Marina del Rey Costco. I'm still scared of quinoa. I might need a lesson. On wheat germ, I keep mine in the refrigerator...I find I get at least a few months out of it that way. Freezer, probably longer, don't you think?

Dorothy at ShockinglyDelicious said...

I keep my wheat germ in the freezer! Lasts a long time. But jeez, a 5-lb bag would throw me. I love your list!

Aggie said...

I'm with you on the whole wheat pasta and the artichokes - I can't find frozen artichokes anywhere near me, I would use the heck out of them if I could pick them up at Costco. And you are so right about good bacon, it really would fly off the shelves.
Side note, I have wheat germ in the pantry and hardly ever use it. I'm going to bring it to the front and start sprinkling :)
Love this post!

averagebetty said...

All I know is I'm going to start camping out on your lawn. You my friend, are amazing! I hope Costco listens to you - if not, I'm sending your list to Smart n' Final (I'm not a Costco member!)

PS: I keep my wheat germ, wheat bran, and any whole wheat flours in the freezer.

Christina | Christina's Cucina said...

Quadruple votes on #1,2,5,7,12,14-16!!!

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Great wish list, Erika, yes. But I keep going back to the fact that you have a basement. A basement. Now there's something to move to the top of my wish list!

Erika Kerekes said...

@Jean, well, not exactly a basement. A lower level. There's a bedroom, bathroom, second family room (with second grand piano, yes we are THAT kind of house), and laundry room. The extra refrigerator is in the laundry room.

Erika Kerekes said...

An update: When I went to Costco last week I found frozen chopped spinach, whole wheat spaghetti, and beechwood-smoked thick-cut bacon. Three out of 20!

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