Prairie Harvest made several changes to its space recently as it is working to expand its selection of food and drinks.
Located at 601 N. Main St. in Newton, Prairie Harvest is owned by Aaron Gaeddert.
"With our goals for expansion, we had to grow the kitchen a little bit and I didn't want to move the kitchen offsite," Gaeddert said. "It would have been real easy to move the equipment and set it up somewhere else, but I think it's a big part of what we do here on a daily basis."
A production kitchen was added in the rear of the store. Glass windows allow the public to peek in and see how the store's Prairy products — especially peppernuts — are made.
"I just wanted to open that up to the public and encourage people to come and watch and see what we're doing as we try to grow and introduce new recipes," Gaeddert said.
Miriam Goertzen-Regier, baker at Prairie Harvest, standardized the original recipe for traditional peppernuts and developed other versions of the treat, including anise-free, wheat-free and old-fashioned peppernuts made with butter and molasses.
"Miriam's been developing different recipes as we try and expand our wholesale line," Gaeddert said.
Goertzen-Regier also makes the dozens of zwiebach rolls that come out of Prairie Harvest's bakery and said lemon-scented sugar cookies and chocolate cookies are coming soon.
"We're looking at new bakery cases or a bigger counter on so we can offer more things for our customers," said Brandee Burnett, Prairie Harvest baker.
Staples such as breads and carrot cake will be joined by an expanded variety of muffins, scones and cookies. Burnett said they are also looking at offering ice cream sandwiches made with Salted Creamery's small-batch ice creams this summer.
"Over the next few months, there's going to be a lot of new introductions and updates on old classics," Gaeddert said.
Hannah Strickler manages Prairie Harvest's deli and incorporates locally-sourced ingredients into her recipes.
"I'm focusing more on fresh, healthy, delicious things that nourish your body that are also wonderful to eat," Strickler said.
The deli's offerings change different produce items go in and out of season.
"We're moving into spring and summer and so I have some recipes that are going to be coming out soon, like a fruity quinoa salad," Strickler said.
Another change in Prairie Harvest's layout was the addition of a juice bar — an outgrowth of the popularity of their kombucha selections.
"It's a natural probiotic, so it's good for the digestive system," Gaeddert said.
At the juice bar, customers can now choose from six different flavors of kombucha along with nitro and cold brew coffee.
"We're just trying to offer something unique for the customers that you can get without driving to Wichita," Gaeddert said.
Smoothies and fresh juices are also made at the juice bar.
"We just came up with four new recipes that are centered on health," Strickler said.
One change to Prairie Harvest's building that is not visible to customers is located on the roof.
"We recently installed solar panels up on the roof to try and offset some of our energy costs," Gaeddert said. "We run a lot of refrigerators and a lot of ovens and a lot of lights and everything."
Prairie Harvest is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays.
For more information, call 316-283-6623 or visit https://prairieharvestks.com.