BERGEN COUNTY, N.J. -- Who wants to cook in this heat? When the temperature soars and you feel yourself dragging, there's only one thing to do -- head to your favorite gourmet store to pick up dinner to go. A list follows, though feel free to tell us some of your go-to places.
Abma's Farm, Wyckoff: What's better than getting food to go? Getting something that's grown locally. Abma's Farm is known for, among other things, its famous chicken salad made with their fresh poultry. Other salads -- all housemade -- include macaroni, coleslaw, potato, and chick pea. You'll also find sandwiches and salads to go along with turkey and chicken meals, pasta dishes, pot pies, and seasonal appetizers. Daily made quiches are made with the farm's own eggs. Get It To Go : 700 Lawlins Rd., Wyckoff, (201) 891-0278, www.abmasfarm.com/ .
Harrington Park Homemade, Harrington Park: Local residents Amanda and Matthew Fichera have taken the old Harrington Park Market and made it the kind of kind of place that harks back to simpler times, albeit with healthier food options. Homemade is the name of the game and on any given day you can find an every changing menu of prepared foods to go. Among recent offerings: a lemon chicken, butternut squash vegan chili, balsamic chicken and beef stew. Get It To Go : 98 LaRoche Ave., Harrington Park, (201) 784-5900, www.hphomemade.com/ .
Italian Riviera, Waldwick: You'll feel transported to Italy when you walk in the door at this longtime Waldwick institution (41 years and counting) where Italian favorites are on display front and center. But the real action -- at least for those too hot to cook - can be found in the shop's refrigerated section where an array of prepared foods awaits. Think tortellini, lasagna, chicken parm and other Italian favorites. Get It To Go: 8 E. Prospect St., Waldwick, (201) 652-9415; www.italianriv.com/ .
Jerry's Gourmet and More, Englewood: Good food, well prepared -- and at good prices -- have always been important to Jerry Turci who shares his story on his website. The store, still family-run, is a virtual food lover's delight with so many varieties of prepared food it's too difficult to count. Just imagine everything - then head here where wine is also available for purchase. Now that's dinner! Get It To Go: 410 S Dean St., Englewood, (201) 871-7108, www.jerryshomemade.com/ .
La Promenade, Tenafly: A freezer section full of gourmet meals -- think raspberry chicken, baked ziti, grilled salmon, meatloaf and more - are available for take-out at this catering company which is also known for its gourmet baked goods. Get It To Go: 137 Piermont Rd., Tenafly, (201) 567-2500, www.laprom.com/ .
Market Basket, Franklin Lakes: Summer is served at Market Basket where you'll find all varieties of meat, seafood, salads and sandwiches. A state-of-the-art kitchen allows customers to see what's (literally) cooking. The friendly and helpful staff only up the ante, making shopping here a breeze . Get It To Go: 813 Franklin Lake Rd., Franklin Lakes, (201) 891-2000, www.marketbasket.com/ .
Maywood Market Place, Maywood: Think of it as the anti-Whole Foods. What you can find at that food store, you can find here, albeit on a smaller scale and with a lot more uniqueness baked into its product. Veggie burgers, chicken, pastas and create your own salads are one reason to come here; the other is to support local. Get To Go: 78 W. Pleasant Ave, Maywood, (201) 843-8361, www.maywoodsmarketplace.com/ .
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