Food Safety for the Fourth

Potato Salad at Ashland Food CoopThe fourth of July is a great time to go camping, enjoy picnics and BBQ with friends and family. Following a few simple tips will ensure you have a fun food safe holiday.

  • Wash your hands before you work with food, whenever you change tasks, and after you are done. Keep in mind hand sanitizer does not replace hand washing when it comes to food safety.
  • Avoid cross contamination, change cutting boards and wash hands and knives with hot soapy water in between tasks. When camping, bring bleach so you can sanitize your tools. Approximately ½ tsp to 3 gallons of water is a good ratio.
  • Know your temperatures and have an instant read thermometer with you. Steaks, Roasts and Fish need to be cooked to an internal temperature of 145, Pork and Ground Beef to 160 degrees and Poultry 165 degrees.
  • Food should not sit out of refrigeration for more than 2 hours; if the outside temperature is above 85 degrees then this time reduces to 1 hour.
  • Serve food on small platters and replenish often so that you can keep the majority of your food in the cooler or refrigerator until you need it.
  • If you are feeling uneasy about eating food that you feel maybe sat out too long and got too warm, just toss it out.

Wishing everyone a fun and food safe holiday!

Michelle, Deli Manager

Spend more time relaxing with friends and family this Thanksgiving and let us do the cooking for you. Reduce your holiday stress by ordering our Deli's ready-to-heat and serve Thanksgiving meal. Our kitchen makes everything from scratch and all recipes use the highest quality ingredients. This year’s menu features Diestel Free Range Oven Roasted Turkey, Vegan Mushroom... Read More
The holiday season is upon us. Amidst the shopping frenzies, family gatherings, and parties it can be hard to remember this is also a season of giving. That’s why we want to make it easy for you to give back. So easy that it’s as simple as doing your everyday grocery shopping. You can nourish your own family and help fight hunger in the Rogue Valley. For the month of November... Read More
Like it or not, the cool weather has arrived. Whether you are heading out for a hike or enjoying a good book by the fire, the Co-op Deli has what you need to fuel your favorite fall activity. Stay warm with these comfort food recommendations from the Co-op Deli.   Nothing complements a perfect, brisk fall day than a bowl of our tasty and filling soups. I love the... Read More
When not working on Board of Director efforts, my profession is an Interior and Building Designer. I own the Ashland Design Studio, located in the Historic Railroad District, and have a design services studio there - JulieO Design. I have been in the architectural design business my whole life; from crawling around my father's architectural studio to traveling around... Read More
By Emile Amarotico A recent visitor commented that our parking is totally inadequate to our business volume. What’s true is that we cannot create more parking due to space and municipal code constraints. Thus, the value of each available space is increasing over time. Assuming only half of Co-op shoppers use automobile parking, each space supports at least $200,000 in annual... Read More
October is National Co-op Month, so what’s the big deal? Being a co-op is special. Yes, we know we are biased, but being a cooperative enterprise means we do business differently. We don’t have a single owner living on their private island drinking margaritas all day without a care in the world. We are owned and governed by you, our 10,000 members. We share the burden in hard... Read More
My history with the Ashland Food Co-op began just after I was born in 1981 right here in Ashland, Oregon. I am sure I was mere days on this earth before I was hauled along on a mission to stock up on organic oats, Sappo Hill soap, or any number of other essential products for a healthy lifestyle that simply were not offered anywhere else. As an adult I’ve spent my working life... Read More
By Emile Armarotico This spring, National Co-op Grocers recognized Ashland Food Co-op as a Co+efficient Sustainability Star for our excellent sustainability efforts. Our Sustainability Vision aims at being carbon neutral by 2030. We’ve taken a great stride toward this by installing a 39 kilowatt solar electric system on our rooftop with the capacity to generate approximately... Read More
When we say local, we mean local. We source our local goods from within 200 miles of the store. By purchasing goods from local producers, we aim to create and maintain a healthy local economy and support family farms. What could be better than helping your community by buying local goods? With all the local products that we offer, it’s hard to pick a favorite. But that’s... Read More
How often can you browse the shelf at your neighborhood grocery store, see a bottle of hand crafted, local cider and say, “Hey, I helped make that!” Well, at the Co-op you can. Apple Outlaw, in collaboration with the local community, is setting out for the second year to create a one of a kind hard cider, dubbed “Apple Outlaw Community Cider." Soon neighborhood fruit trees... Read More
Many of us wait all year for this moment. We spend the winter months dreaming of a certain fuzzy stone fruit, its sweet juices dripping from our face and the buttery golden pie crust those yellow-orange slices will inhabit. Good news! The wait is over. That local, sweet orb of sunshine has finally arrived. That’s right. Rolling Hills peaches are here! Rolling Hills peaches... Read More
The Ashland Food Co-op Board of Directors is pleased to announce the results of the 2017 Board Election. There were five excellent candidates running for three Board positions. In total, 733 votes were cast, representing 9% of owners.    Congratulations to the following candidates who will serve three-year terms on the Ashland Food Co-op... Read More
Deep in our hearts we've always known we were sustainability stars, but now we have an award to prove it. We recently received a Co+efficient Sustainability Star award from National Co-op Grocers (NCG) recognizing our positive environmental and community impacts. Co+efficient, NCG’s sustainability program, measures social, environmental and local economic impacts from... Read More
It’s the most wonderful time of year! Yes, we know that phrase is generally reserved for the holiday season. But for us, this truly is the most wonderful time of the year. It’s OUR season of giving. Every spring, for more than 20 years, we’ve been donating to area nonprofits through our Community Grant program. We are committed to creating healthy, sustainable  ... Read More
Did you know that approximately half of our landfill waste stream is composed of Deli trash? A significant part of that is “to-go” containers, which are sometimes used for dining in and don’t end up “going” very far at all. Sustainability matters in everyday actions and we want you, our customers, to help us reduce unnecessary waste and make the most ecologically sound... Read More
Meet Your Candidates The Co-op Board is pleased to announce that we have 5 candidates for 3 open seats in the 2017 Board Election!   Join us for a social "Meet the Candidates" night on May 31st, 7pm in the Co-op Classroom. There will be light refreshments and an opportunity to personally ask each candidate any question you may have... Read More
The sun is (mostly) out and the weather is finally getting warmer. That must mean summer is right around the corner, right? We sure hope so. We’re ready to grill, soak up some sun and enjoy the many fruits and vegetables that are in season. Our Floral Coordinator, Rachel Chastain, shares some of her favorites. Organically Grown Thai Coconuts Did you know we carry... Read More
Sustainability is not a new concept at the Co-op. It has always been part of our DNA. We’ve been using sustainable business practices before it was the “cool”, “responsible” thing to do. In fact, the Co-op was founded 45 years ago largely on the principles of sustainable, local organic food production as an alternative to modern industrial agriculture.   In 2007, an... Read More
For 45 years we’ve been loving local and fostering community. Throughout our almost half a century history, our identity and logo has gone through many iterations. Some of you might remember the logo above from our newsletter in the early 1980s. As we’ve done multiple times throughout our history, it’s time to refresh our brand and launch a beautiful, new logo to take us... Read More
Turkey and Sweet Potato Chili is one of my favorite Co+op Basics recipes. It is full of flavor, color and shatters the myth that a healthy meal has to cost a fortune and take all day to prepare. This recipe is also a clever way to use sweet potatoes, which are not only tasty but high in fiber and vitamin A. This chili is best enjoyed the next day, after the flavors have had a... Read More
We hear from time to time that people feel the Co-op is higher priced than other stores. In the past, we may have earned this perception. But not anymore. We took a long, hard look at ourselves and we talked with other Co-ops across the country. Together, we are pooling our resources to bring you organic, household staples at everyday competitive, low prices. Welcome to Co+op... Read More
On Valentine’s Day, the Ashland Food Co-op turns 45 years old. It’s hard to imagine we’ve been providing healthy, organic food to the Rogue Valley for almost half a century. From our humble beginnings as the Ashland Community Food Store to now a thriving Co-op with over 10,000 owners, it has been an honor to serve this community. Let’s take a brief stroll down memory lane... Read More
To further our sustainability efforts and to serve you better, we began offering Electronic Owner Coupons this month at the register. No more forgetting to bring your owner coupons. No more waiting for your newsletter to arrive. Cashiers will simply ask if you want to use your owner coupons when you check out. A few key points to remember: Coupons will now be monthly... Read More
  2016 had many notable moments. We hosted many successful family friendly events, added 150 more solar panels to our roof, and earned 25% of our sales for local products. We proudly donated over $24,000 to area nonprofits through our Community Grants program. We welcomed 482 new owners and averaged 3,500 daily transactions. Whew! And that is just a small sample. At... Read More
The food holiday season has finally arrived. This time of year is by far our most favorite. We’ve been dreaming of gingerbread cookies, pumpkin pie, mashed potatoes, turkey (or tofurky if that’s your fancy) and eggnog for months. But beyond the holiday feasts, we love this time of year for another reason. It’s the season of giving. Amidst the shopping frenzies, family... Read More
Heading to a holiday party this month, or five? No need to spend hours in the kitchen making countless appetizers, dips and desserts. After all, you just got done with a marathon of cooking and baking for Thanksgiving. Make your party going a breeze with these go-to holiday favorites from our Specialties staff. Bruce Crowell One of my favorite holiday wines is S. Tissot... Read More
We know, we know, November is all about turkey. But let us not forget the other, other white meat this holiday season. Chicken. This poultry meat often gets the spotlight, but during the month of November it is well deserved. Why? Because all month long, every time you purchase a Smart Chicken® product at the Co-op you help feed a hungry family in the Rogue Valley. Here’s... Read More
Co-ops around the world share a set of guiding principles including “cooperation among cooperatives,” and “concern for community.” We take these principles to heart. When you shop at the Co-op, you aren’t just buying groceries. You are supporting a business that cares about people and contributes to a livable, sustainable Rogue Valley. Did you know? In 2015, we... Read More
My Italian Grandmother’s heart swells every time she sees my well-stocked pantry. I am prepared to feed an army at a moment’s notice, and sometimes that actually happens with my big family. But what my Grandma doesn’t know is how much I save by stocking my pantry with Co+op Basics products. From nuts to pasta to olive oil to broths, all are on standby in my pantry looking... Read More
We take pride in supporting local farmers, producers, vendors and vintners. When we say local, we mean local. At some grocery stores, the word local gets thrown around like the word “natural,” ambiguously and with a broad definition. But local means something to us. A definition we take meticulous pride in. Local adjective Any food or product grown, produced or made... Read More
Urban fruit is copious this time of year in the Rogue Valley. It’s hard, dare we say impossible, to make enough pies, cobblers, and salads to keep up with the backyard abundance. So what do you do with all that unpicked fruit? Instead of letting your pears, plums and apples go to waste, or to feed the deer, bring them to the Co-op for collection. Apple Outlaw Cider,... Read More
Break out of your dinner rut with something fast and juicy. The Meat Department staff share their go-to favorites to throw on the grill. Flame on, baby! Brian Swift Flat Iron is my favorite steak. So simple to cook. Just add salt, pepper, garlic, and cook it on a super hot grill. 5 minutes later you have an amazing steak. Sam Roberts Tri­Tip marinated in... Read More
Everyone loves a picnic. But some are better at organizing one than others. Make planning the perfect picnic a breeze with our easy picnic guide. Choose a location Before you start prepping and packing, make sure you have a location picked out. This will help you determine what you need to bring and how food should be properly stored and or packed. Southern Oregon is... Read More
Each year we hold an Annual Meeting and Owner Picnic. This is our chance to catch up over a delightful picnic and most importantly update you on the recent year’s events and financials. This year, we are changing things up a bit. The Annual Meeting and Owner Picnic will be more family friendly than ever before. We have a new menu designed to appeal to busy little (and big... Read More
Bulk bins have been a staple at the Ashland Food Co-op since we opened our doors in 1972. For good reason too, buying in bulk is better. Better for your pocket book, better for the environment, and better for your belly. Here’s why. 6 Reasons to Buy in Bulk It's fresh! Our bulk bins are filled up, rotated and cleaned on a regular basis, giving our customers extremely... Read More
At the Co-op, we are all about community. After all, YOU are why we are here and providing healthy, organic food to the Rogue Valley. As a cooperative enterprise, there are seven principles we follow. We use them as guidlines to put our values into practice. Principle 7, Concern for Community, affords us the opportunity to give back to local... Read More
You might have noticed a rather large, prickly fruit hanging out next to the apples, oranges, and papayas in the Produce Department. Meet the Jackfruit, the newest addition to the Produce Department. In case you don't know "jack" about Jackfruit, here is a crash course. The Jackfruit is native to South and Southeast Asia and is a close cousin of the fig. The Co-op... Read More
  This is one of our favorite times of the year. The sun is out and the days are longer, time to play in the dirt. Our Produce Staff share their favorite seeds and starts to help you get your garden going.   [[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_original","fid":"16815","attributes":{"alt":"","class":"media-image","height":"3008","style":"width... Read More
Do you love breakfast food? Are you a new owner in our wonderful Co-op? If you answered yes to both these questions then you are in luck. We want to celebrate YOU!  If you’ve become an owner in 2016, come and enjoy a delicious Saturday morning brunch and convivial discussion with board members and our Outreach Manager, Annie Hoy. We’ll explain exactly what... Read More
Welcome back to our Behind the Scenes blog series. So far you’ve meet the dynamic Produce and Deli teams. Next up, the department that is packed with protein, meet the Meat Department. Did you know? All of the fresh beef and lamb are local grass fed and grass finished meats. None of the seafood products contains Sodium Tripolyphosphate. The Meat Department... Read More
Rachel Rose, Assistant Produce Manager, shares her spring produce picks. Strawberries Most people are surprised to know that early spring are two of the best months out of the year for tasty strawberries. The first batch out of California is usually so sweet and full of flavor that the rest of the year I often shy away from strawberries. They just don’... Read More
Spring is most definitely upon us, and we are lucky enough to live in Southern Oregon where the weather during this time is usually (ahem) co-operative enough to let us get some plants in the ground in between the hail storms and rainbows.  There are actually many plants that do quite well in this time of transition, as they prefer the cooler temperatures that we get here... Read More
UPDATED  3/17/16 Ashland Food Co-Op of Ashland, Oregon issues the updated press release to clarify that we re-packed and sold Organic Raw Macadamia nuts in random weight bags at our retail store in Oregon only between January 5th, 2016 and February 4th, 2016.  We do not have any internet sale or distribute affected product outside Oregon. The Ashland... Read More
Garden of Life has issued a voluntary recall on all Raw Meal products shipped after August 15, 2015.  Please see the below link to Garden of Life’s blog for all lot numbers that they are recalling, as well as details of the recall. Read More
Rachel Rose, Assistant Produce Manager, shares her winter produce picks. The cells in our bodies are all made using the building blocks that we provide in the food that we eat, the air that we breathe and the water we drink. If we want healthy bodies, feeding ourselves and our families the cleanest healthiest foods is a real good start. We are what we eat! Burdock... Read More
Welcome back to our Behind the Scenes blog series. We recently took you into the colorful world of Produce. Now we’d like to introduce you to the department that enters beast mode daily: the Deli. Did you know? The Deli is working to eliminate all GMOs or GMO related products from their recipes and moving toward 100% organic products. Presently, they use 82%... Read More
Happy 2016! It’s a brand new year, new month, new day. No doubt many of you’ve made a variety of resolutions to make this year the best yet. The Co-op can help you succeed. How? Let us tell you. Here are 31 reasons why you should visit the Co-op every day this month to improve your life and your community. 1. You can own it! More than ever, we are aware of where every... Read More
You shop for groceries at the Co-op. For lunch, you often stop at the Deli for a quick meal from the Hot Bar. You meet friends outside on the plaza, give each other long hugs, and catch up on life. After a long week, you swing by for the Friday beer and wine tastings at the Kiosk. But how well do you really know the Co-op? Well, we’d like to tell you more about us and all... Read More
Can it really be that time of year again? 2015 was full of so many things for which to be grateful. Here’s a list of some of the highlights. We celebrated the 10-thousandth person to become a Co-op owner! Co-op ownership is a way to help create a more humane and democratic way to do business locally. A robust cooperative economy is one way to take a stand against corporate... Read More
Need a last minute holiday gift? Struggling to find that perfect present for a certain friend? While it might not be your go-to place for holiday shopping, the AFC Wellness Department can meet all your needs. Think about it. What could be better than giving the gift of health? From soothing bath salts to vitamins to jump start your New Year’s resolution, the Wellness... Read More
Are you feeling the stress of Thanksgiving planning? The Co-op can help you with all of your food needs. One of the tips that we’ve learned over the years is that if you start your planning about ten days out, you’ll be more resilient as Thanksgiving Day approaches. Here’s a suggested plan that you can follow as is, or revise for your individual needs. November 16 Make your... Read More
Let’s face it, the holidays can be stressful. With the gift-giving, the cooking, the decorations and the parties, the festivities can seem more like work than a vacation. That’s where we come in. Order our Deli’s ready-to-heat and serve Thanksgiving meal to make your holiday a breeze. We make everything from scratch and all recipes use the highest quality ingredients.... Read More
The holiday season is upon us. Amidst the shopping frenzies, family gatherings, and parties it can be hard to remember this is also a season of giving. Luckily, you have us and we are making it easy for you to give back. During the month of November, Co-op shoppers can nourish their own families and help fight hunger in the Rogue Valley. Over the years, Smart Chicken®... Read More
With all the abundance the Rogue Valley has to offer, it's easy to support and love all things local. We’ve got local fruits, veggies, meat, beer, wine, and vitamins! “Loving local” is a healthy addiction, at least we think so, and one that we want to get all our friends hooked on. At the Ashland Food Co-op, we are dedicating a whole week to our local farmers... Read More
Football season is here and I must admit, I’m not a huge football fan. I don’t have a favorite team. I don’t bleed green and yellow. I don’t really care who wins. But I absolutely love football foods. Chicken wings, nachos, chips, salsa, guacamole, ribs, burgers, the list goes on. Because football can be so delicious, I’m always on board for a good tailgating party. When... Read More
No doubt the watermelon has been dominating every backyard BBQ you’ve attended lately. From salad, cocktails, to dessert, I’ve tried watermelon every which way and then some. They are in their sweet, juicy prime and the possibilities are endless. But what about those other melons? It’s not a surprise that the cantaloupe often takes a back seat to its colorful cousin, the... Read More
There is a hint of fall in the air, and that makes me giddy! I love this time of transition, the sweet warm days of summer will soon turn into the crisp nights of fall. My tomato plants are finally producing, and have a plethora of flowers and fruit. A gardener friend told me not long ago that around the third week of August, it’s time to pinch flowers, to allow your green... Read More
When I think about the flavors of summer I am immediately transported back to a house party a few years ago, where a friend served crackers, goat cheese, basil and tomatoes. This snack is a great example of how simple dishes and seasonal produce can win over your taste buds! Tomatoes are at the peak of their season. Their compadre basil is also busting a move. A big thanks... Read More
Do you ever find yourself staring, well let’s be honest drooling, at an array of fresh, golden peaches? Only to get home and find the four you bought are too soft or juiceless or just plain not as good as they look on the outside? It’s a common grocery store conundrum. Everyone has that one fruit or vegetable that plagues them. For me, it’s the fig. I love figs. But for the... Read More
Tis’ the season of zucchini! The summer squash, if not already, will soon be filling up your garden. It’s time to pull out your recipes for zucchini bread, zucchini brownies, or zucchini fritters and get cooking! From baking to sautéing to frying, zucchini is very versatile. But there may be some uses you haven’t tried, such as substituting zucchini in your kimchi recipe or... Read More
If you’ve been in the store this last month you’ve seen the stacks of luscious stone fruit slowly taking over our produce aisles. We’ve had peaches from Washington, as well as Ashland’s Valley View Orchards, and any day now we’ll have local Rolling Hills peaches. Both Valley View and Rolling Hills handpick and pack their peaches, meaning they can stay on the tree long enough... Read More
Let’s get fresh! Liven up your grilling and summer dishes with homemade salsa. Adding fruit and fresh peppers into a salsa recipe is a great way to infuse the flavors of summer in every dish. Grilling your fruit, peppers or onion deepens their flavors, so throw some on next time you light up the grill. Nature has a funny way of taking care of us humanoids. Take for example... Read More
Holy heat wave, did we all survive? How about your gardens? While weather is still expected to be around 100 degrees this week, it’s a relief to drop below 107. Last week I harvested my first zucchini! It was tender and a beautiful golden yellow color. The green beans are shooting off little pods, the blackberries are small and starting to turn color, and my chickens have been... Read More
The abundance of summer is rolling in! Are you ready? This time of year I pour through blogs and books about canning and preserving the harvest, gleaning inspiration from my peers and weighing in my mind which recipes would make good gifts. The stack of empty Ball jars in my pantry glisten with inspiration and the promise of good things to come. Every year I am taken by... Read More
Let’s dive into the world mocktails! The beauty of a mocktail is they’re refreshing, beautiful, and you can drink them anytime of the day. On my list to try this summer are Black Berry & Meyer Lemon Spritzer, Lady Lavender’s Mocktail and a Pineapple Cucumber Cooler. One of my co-workers had a fabulous celebration last weekend, and the following kombucha mocktail recipe... Read More
Northwest berries are finally coming through our doors! While the may be a bit more expensive, there’s good reason for that. Berry season is finally upon our region and the taste in the berries is quite different from those we’ve had from California. Berries are rich in vitamin C, pectin and packed with antioxidants. Blueberries and blackberries are some of the best... Read More
June 15-21st we are officially teaming up with Bee Girl and celebrating National Pollinator Week.  Throughout our produce department you will see signs like this one, spreading the buzz about pollinators.               Here are some sweet facts from Bee Girl about our busy bees Honey never "... Read More
The land around us is wide awake from winter hibernation, and local produce is starting to trickle in. From now on, keep your eyes peeled for local goods staking claim on our produce shelves. Check out the signs hanging above produce, and choose the ones with blue boarders for local goods. Examples of local produce from now through the end of June include garlic scapes,... Read More
Ring in June with this wonderfully simple recipe for Watermelon Salad. I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the flavor of the early watermelons. ½ medium red onion or a few shallots ½ - ⅓ cup fresh lime juice 3 lbs of seedless watermelon 8 oz feta cheese ½ cup fresh mint, chopped ¼ cup olive oil ⅔ cup Kalamata olives, pitted & chopped    ... Read More
As we usher out May and welcome June with open arms, it means potluck, wedding and vacation season are upon us full throttle. Simplified meal planning and a little creativity are key in making sure you’re spending less time in the kitchen and more time outdoors basking in the sunshine. Here are some quick time saving tips from my kitchen to yours. Plan one-pot or meal-in-a-... Read More
It’s that time of year when my tastebuds do a little dance as I spy the first packages of Mama Terra Micro Creamery Chevre appear in our cheese case. If you’ve never had it before, this fresh, locally made Chevre is creamy and delicious, with a subtle goat milk flavor. I’ve used it on tarts for fancy brunches, in cheesecake for a refreshing tang, or simply spread it on... Read More
For all of you fish-eating enthusiasts it is that time of year again- Fresh Fish Season! Whether you like your fish baked, broiled, barbequed, pan-seared, poached, or deep-fried it is fresh and available in-store now. Alaskan Wild Halibut, Cod and Rockfish are currently lining our shelves, and are great for those looking for a fresh, in-season, lean and high protein base for... Read More
We have many events coming up that all involve greening-up your life. Come partake with us! Wednesday, April 22 Stop by the store and opt-out of paper receipts! Save paper and keep clutter at bay. Receipts are automatically emailed to you Wednesday, April 22 Bring your cup, and save 50 cents on any drink at the juice bar! This stellar deal is only good... Read More
How do your green your life? Do you ride a bike to work, shop in bulk or bring your grocery bags? Do you ponder about choosing organic, local products over conventional, factory-farmed ones? These are choices we make every day, and now we bring you another one. Co-op Owners can now opt-out of printed receipts! This simple step reduces the unnecessary... Read More
Every year around this time the earth awakens from dormancy, and springs forth in to full throttle lusciousness. If you eat with the seasons you’ll notice that we now have an abundance of Asparagus and Rhubarb. Don’t be intimidates by asparagus with fat-stalks, the rotund ones are simply female, and have nothing to do with freshness. Treat your body to new springtime flavors... Read More
It’s a great question. Why choose natural dyes? Is it really worth the extra effort? With a holiday just around the corner that invokes images of brightly colored eggs (and shiny plastic ones), it’s a great time to revisit this topic. Our Product Standards for the store prohibit products containing synthetic dyes, and there’s a good reason why. Synthetic dyes are... Read More
Just in time for spring we have a plethora of seeds for your garden! Although it’s best to wait on planting some things outside until it’s warmer, you can easily start seeds indoors for a leg-up on the gardening season. Find a place inside your house that’s sunny and warm, grab some small containers and pick up some seedling dirt. Then comes the fun part, selecting seeds and... Read More
It’s almost spring and we’ll soon be graced with sunny days. As the weather promises to get above 60 in the next few weeks, we might just have the chance to frolic in the grass shoeless, sipping on a tasty beverage, and dreaming about summer plans. Until that wonderful moment when we can throw our wool socks and boots deep into the back of our closets, we must create some... Read More
Help Jackson County farmers defend Jackson County’s vote to ban genetically engineered crops. 66% of Jackson County residents passed ballot measure 15-119 with strong bipartisan support. Now, two local GMO alfalfa growers, funded by Monsanto, Syngenta and other chemical giants have now filed suit to overturn the democratic vote. Our Family Farms Coalition (OFFC) and... Read More
Trees are budding and blooming, weeds are staking their ground, daffodils are popping up, and plant starts just arrived at the Ashland Food Co-op! It’s time to dust off your garden plans, figure out where the heck your gloves have wandered off to, and prep the soil in your beds. If you want to get a jump start on planting your garden for this spring, try some of the early... Read More
Watch as these kids show what makes organic farming the choice for the future in a surprising twist on a classic children’s song. It's time to say goodbye to Old MacDonald. When you choose Organic you are choosing a future with less toxic chemicals in our food and environment. Share this video with a friend and help us build a healthier future for all... Read More
Originally from India, this Grass has migrated to Klamath Falls and it’s certified organic! Fresh Green Organic Garden grows the grass along with herbs, heirloom tomatoes and much more. They utilize geothermal energy and the abundant sunshine that K-Falls is famous for.  Their soil is organic as are the homegrown compost and compost tea that all their plantings enjoy.... Read More
One of the cornerstones of both Thai and Indonesian cooking is a root that looks like obese ginger. Galangal grows in same ecosystem as ginger, but unlike ginger it doesn’t have a dormant season. In fact it is unstoppable.  Its tough fibrous roots are bound together by strong and sinewy feeder roots making the harvest a full body workout.  Once the root is wrestled... Read More
In a half hour lentils are cooked without presoaking and ready to do your bidding in soups, salads, curries, pates, on and on.  Start with about 2 ½ cups of water to one cup dried lentils. Bring water and lentils to a boil, cover and reduce the heat to a simmer.  Add a little more water if needed  Drain off any excess cooking liquid and create something... Read More
Even though leeks are a well known member of the allium family, they offer a slightly different flavor than onions.  Mild and sweet, they take the edge off their pungent cousin in soups and other savory dishes.  The question is how much to use?  All of the white bulb is tender and sweet, and much of the pale green top is as well.  Dark green leaves can be... Read More
One of the easiest food processing techniques is also one of the most nutritionally beneficial.  It’s like a magic trick to chop up a big globe of cabbage, put it in a bowl and massage it with sea salt. You will feel the moisture sweat out of the wilting pieces.   Next place the cabbage and the juice in a 2 quart jar.  Tamp it down, fill a ziplock bag with... Read More
Gianaclis Caldwell, one of our region’s finest artisan cheesemakers, had a crazy good idea.  She created just the right texture, added seasonings and ended up with a cheese sausage.  Her original inspiration flavor, Fiesta is like fresh Mexican chorizo sausage.  The spice blend includes smoked paprika, oregano and dried ancho and poblano peppers.  Fiesta is... Read More
If you love carrots you have something to look forward to in the cold of winter!  Several local growers have bountiful carrot crops that are harvested starting in late August, and continue on through late March.  The August through September harvest is primarily from Hi Hoe Produce at Blue Bird Farm.  Barking Moon Farm and Blue Fox Farm continue on to February... Read More
That expression about making lemonade out of lemons applies in a different sort of way to the Farm to School Apple Program. Apples are not all created equal, some are big some are small.  What goes to market needs to be a consistent size.  Washington state fuji apple growers inevitably have a range of apple sizes to contend with.  In 2011 Tom and David Lively... Read More
Here’s a New Year’s resolution that will change your life! Use more herbs and spices in your everyday meal preparations. The first step might be out with the old and in with the new. So go through your spice drawer or cupboard and get rid of the old, dusty spices that have been around longer than a year. Likely these have lost their bright color and aroma. Save the jars and... Read More
Everyone knows about the traditional New Year’s Day dish called Hoppin’ John, but the origins of the name are more mysterious. A common belief is that the dish originated in Louisiana where it was called by the French Creole name for pigeon peas, a dried pea similar to the black-eyed pea. The French Creole term is “pois a pigeon” which is pronounced pwah peeJon. Say it fast... Read More
A really great way to use a spice blend is to rub it on your favorite meat, poultry, tofu or winter squash before cooking. Besides herbs and spices, a rub will include salt and often sugar. This creates a flavorful crust and draws out a little moisture which helps with browning. There are many spice blends available, but making one’s own signature blends will take your... Read More
If you’ve ever had the urge to lick the last bits of a chutney right off your plate, you get the Hindi origin of the word which means to lick. A really good chutney offers pungent spices perfectly blended with the fruit or veggies that are the main ingredients. There might be just a couple or there might be as many as 15. Regardless there is a balance of sweet and sour and... Read More
Even though it is often called celery root, celeriac is not a root at all but a hypocotyl or stem of a germinating seedling. It is one of those vegetables that has plenty of character. The entire outer case is covered with wart like bumps and whorls of undulating tan and green. Every ridge and curve is a potential trap for dirt and soil.  Gnarly root endings dangle from... Read More
A centuries old holiday tradition for many families is gathering together to make tamales.  The numerous steps involved in creating these spicy little packets make them a perfect excuse for kitchen gatherings. Stories are shared as pots of savory fillings and steamer baskets full of corn husk wrapped tamales fill the room with memorable aromas. The more traditional... Read More
If you look at the flower, stem, calyx and petals  of a cranberry plant just right, they do resemble the neck, head and bill of a crane.  That’s what early Europeans thought  so the name stuck for a while.  Eventually it was shortened to cranberry.  Reportedly the berry was one of the first gifts Native Americans gave to the European arrivals.  It... Read More
A surprising number of people believe there is pumpkin in pumpkin pie spice. Seems logical, but the spice blend is merely a bundling of spices commonly used to season what would otherwise be a rather bland-tasting pie. Usually the combination is cinnamon, ginger, allspice, cloves and nutmeg. Pumpkin spice has been around since the 1950’s when large spice and... Read More
Jazz, Pink Lady, Honey Crisp, Fuji and Ambrosia are the produce department’s favorite apples. Jazz received the most votes this year, but next year that could change. As produce worker, Bryan Crane says, “Just because one person likes a particular apple doesn’t mean someone else will. It’s a matter of individual taste.” No matter what flavor and texture... Read More
Perhaps you have made a beautiful salad with lettuce, beets, and goat cheese, tossed it, and watched with dismay as the entire contents turned pink! One quickly learns to add the beets at the very end of the mixing, and to just sprinkle the cheese on top. The ruby red color we associate with beets is betacyanin, a pigment of the anthocyanin family which is... Read More
Thanks to the Non-GMO Project, the Co-op can guarantee you some delicious treats for your Trick or Treaters this year. I may have as many as 100 kids stop by so I am interested in clean, tasty, pre-wrapped candy for a reasonable price. My ulterior motive is to pick something that I like in case I have leftovers. Considering all these variables my first... Read More
Here’s a way to “cook” a dark leafy green without ever turning a burner on.  Just give a bunch of kale a deep tissue massage with a little sea salt.  Start by desteming the leaves.  Pull them away from the stems with a quick motion.  Stack the leaves, roll up and cut into thin ribbons.  Place kale in a large mixing bowl.  Sprinkle with a scant... Read More
Bite into a juicy ripe pear, the texture melts away and leaves you with a mouthful of flavor.  The melting quality is what gave pears the nickname, “butter fruit”.  A perfectly ripe eating pear will be a little soft at the stem end and have a faint pear aroma.  Because pears ripen from the inside out, one that feels soft to the touch is already over ripe on the... Read More
Once you taste a homemade corn tortilla, there is no going back.  With a little practice, a tortilla press and a cast iron skillet you are set. Buy certified organic yellow or blue stone-ground corn masa flour from the Co-op’s bulk section.  One pound will make about 48 tortillas and cost a fraction the price of premade ones. But the real difference is the flavor and... Read More
Our local company, Inesscents Aromatic Botanicals™, has really grown since our products were first available at the Ashland Food Co-op 14 years ago! Your local body care line is now Certified Organic, Fair Trade, iTal and a B-Corporation. We source our ingredients sustainably, and wholeheartedly support conscious consumerism. And yet, nothing speaks... Read More
Fermenting dairy products is not a new idea.  Cave drawings from 4000 BC show humans enjoying their homemade or should I say cavemade dairy drinks.  Little crusts of cheese have been found in Egyptian tombs.  Quality fermented dairy foods were a mark of sophistication in Greek-Roman times so the ultimate insult was to call someone a “barbaric milk drinker”.... Read More
Each year, the Association of Oregon Recyclers recognizes exceptional contributions to recycling and waste prevention efforts in the Northwest through its Recycler of the Year awards. Among the requirements to win is a long-term commitment to waste prevention, recycling, market development, or community involvement. Recipients must also ... Read More
There are so many ways to successfully remove the skins from green chiles. If you don’t happen to have access to the big gas fired barrel roasters used all over the Southwest, try using the broiler in your oven. Place the chiles on a cookie sheet. Roast ferociously. Perfectly roasted chiles look brown-black and blistered. This is what makes them easy to peel and also helps... Read More
Meet Our Local Producers During Love Local Week September 12-20! We invited our favorite local producers to come meet you at the Culinary Kiosk for conversation and to offer a sampling of their wares. We’ll also be featuring specialty products from local farms.  Watch our Facebook page for daily tasting schedules.  In the meantime, here are some folks... Read More
Save the date, Saturday, September 20 from 11am to 2pm. Thanks to Fry Family Farm we will once again be roasting green chiles out front of the Co-op. Frys are providing both the roaster and the green chiles fresh from their Medford farm. All you have to do is place an order for the amount you need and they will custom roast them for you. Then you can pay... Read More
Upon returning from a 5 day vacation, I did a garden check and discovered a pair of 19 inch zucchini tucked under  a leaf.  Once summer squash flowers are pollinated, it’s only a matter of days before they are ready for harvest and 5 days was just too long to leave these squash on their own.  So far the perfect craft project for over-size zucchini has eluded me... Read More
If you have made all the tomato sauce and pesto your freezer can hold and you still have fresh basil coming out your ears, keep reading! It’s easy to dry it for winter use, no special equipment or time required. Carefully harvest perfect leaf clusters with scissors. Try to keep at least a couple inches of stem on the leaves. Find a brown paper bag just the right size to hold... Read More
This week our new sneeze guards were installed and you will notice some continued improvements in the placement of items.  We now have a sneeze guard over the soup station allowing us room to merchandise our soup rolls and cornbread in a much more attractive manner.  Additionally, our shelving arrived at the end of the salad bar.  We have been waiting for these... Read More
It is hard to believe that the new Deli has been open for a month now. We have had great success from the very start with quite a few learning opportunities as well. Thank you all for taking the time to voice your frustrations, concerns, suggestions, ideas and praise. I personally read each and every suggestion card and made sure we either responded via phone, email or by... Read More
Why did you change the beans and rice from self serve to full serve? When we redesigned the department to provide more workspace for our employees, we had to make some sacrifices. We lost the hot well space that previously housed the beans and rice when we replaced the old salad bar with our beautiful new cold bar. Knowing that we would be adding a burrito... Read More
As we near the 3 week mark of the reopening of the deli, I want to take this time to thank all of you that have been supportive and patient during this change. We have all experienced a pretty steep learning curve this month. You, the customers, are learning how to order and navigate our department, the cashiers are learning a new POS ordering system, and the deli employees... Read More
What is Acai? Acai is considered the king of the superfoods. It is a tiny purple palm fruit that is a staple food for people of the Amazon. Açaí is rich in antioxidants (specifically anthocyanins like those found in red wine) and healthy fats similar to olive oil, plus it has no sugar. This combo makes açaí a powerhouse of satisfying nutrition. We take the... Read More
Wow, what an exciting process this has been! We appreciate all of the creative solutions that you must have come up with over the course of the last 8 days as you entered the store and found our deli closed. I spoke with many of you during that time and truly got a sense of how important the deli is to our community as a place for healthy and delicious... Read More
First, let me start by saying thank you all so much for your understanding and patience while the deli is closed. We are excited to provide an upgraded workspace for our employees and a more enjoyable shopping experience for our customers. The biggest change you will notice when we open the doors is that you will place your orders for our juice, coffee & smoothie bar,... Read More
Just a reminder everyone, the Deli Department will close this Sunday the 22nd at 7 pm and reopen (fingers crossed) on Tuesday July 1st at 7 am.  The inside eating area will be closed during that time frame as well.  We apologize for the inconvenience this causes and have heard many customers fret about where they are going to eat while we remodel.  We... Read More
As the remodel date nears, I keep thinking of more details that I want to share with you so that everyone is as informed as they can be regarding our changes.  We are planning on closing the deli at 7 pm on Sunday June 22nd and reopening Tuesday July 1st.  During that time the eating area will also be closed so that we have a place to store our large equipment while... Read More
Due to a more efficient ordering process and some technical difficulties that we cannot overcome, we have realized that when we reopen the deli after the remodel we will no longer be able to have our customers use pre-paid wheatgrass cards or our wheatgrass punch cards.  When we first implemented the pre-paid wheatgrass cards it was in response to customers having to... Read More
After almost a year of planning and organizing we finally have a date for our deli remodel.  Please note that this may change by a day on either side, but we are hoping that we can commit to the dates of being closed from June 20th through the 28th.  We are hoping to reopen on Sunday June 29th.  Please keep in mind that the deli department will be closed these... Read More
I want to take the time to explain how we will sell our Basic Pricing Beans & Rice after the remodel, to make sure you have time to understand the changes.  All beans and rice will still be priced within our Basic Pricing model.  However, they will no longer be self-serve.  We will no longer have enough hot wells out in the customer area to accommodate this... Read More
When we reopen our Deli after the remodel there will be a few things that are very different.  The first thing you will most likely notice is that we have chosen to use monitors to project our menus for the juice, smoothie, coffee, sandwiches, beans and rice, and burrito bars.  The reason we have chosen this technology is primarily because we can edit our menus... Read More
If you read the most recent newsletter, then you are aware of why we are remodeling the Deli Department. For those that did not, in a nutshell we are trying to provide increased workspace for our employees, improve the shopping flow for our customers, and as a result provide a more delightful shopping experience with better service. We’ll still have a line of self-serve... Read More
Our produce department will be getting new, more efficient vegetable displays next week. We are removing the produce display that greets you as you enter the store with boxed salads and berries in order to get ready for our Deli Remodel coming in June. We are then removing and replacing the entire line of vegetable displays that merchandise everything from... Read More
I love fruit salsas especially paired with fish.  I usually gravitate towards a mango pineapple salsa but as the strawberries have been so luscious lately and mine in the yard are going to be hard to keep up with soon, I broke out of my fruit salsa comfort zone and made some strawberry salsa this weekend. I firmly believe that the kitchen is a place for experimentation... Read More
This Saturday all over the country little ones and adults alike will be busy boiling eggs and dying them.  Whether or not Easter is a religious celebration for you and yours, dying eggs is a fun and creative way to spend some time on a spring day with your children. Using natural ingredients instead of those little chemical pills is not only safer for pets, people... Read More
Well that was fun! There is nothing like the freedom and excitement of literally throwing ingredients together without a recipe to make you feel alive in the kitchen. As mentioned last week I was on a mission to create a grain free, egg free and sugar free (although that last part I had to give up on) version of something that I could call... Read More
Recently, I have discovered that I am allergic to eggs, which in my world is akin to being allergic to something as integral to my diet as coffee, water, or maybe even air. I love eggs, I have been eating them my entire life and heck! We even got chickens to grow our own eggs. This has been a shift in my life and diet that has coincided with my eliminating... Read More
You may have heard through the grapevine that a Deli remodel is in the works. I want to take this opportunity to begin the process of communicating the changes to you. As you know, the Deli register stationed in front of the Juice Bar creates quite a cross traffic flow that makes it difficult for customers to shop. For this reason, we’ll be removing... Read More
I have been noticing flowering trees and bushes for weeks now and recently, there is even some serious growth in our greenhouse.  Spring is the perfect time to cleanse your system and eating greens is a perfect way to do so.  Although, eating greens is a year round activity in my family, I like to throw some of the less tame greens into the mix every spring. ... Read More
In my family growing up we all seemed to have a favorite breakfast that we enjoyed and would make for the rest of the family on weekends and special holidays. My brother seemed to favor one eyed jacks also known as eggs in the basket, one in the hole, hen in a nest and most likely many other names. Essentially the idea is that you take a piece of bread and butter it, cut out a... Read More
I have discovered a new culinary JOY! Having recently embarked on the Whole30 challenge and eliminated all dairy, potatoes, sugar, grains, legumes, alcohol and all artificial everything from my diet, I have been experimenting more in my kitchen than usual. Wanting to replace mashed potatoes with something else for a special date night dinner, I came across a recipe for... Read More
Hopefully, after reading all of this month’s posts about beets, you’ve discovered, or rediscovered, your love for these roots.  Have they made their way onto your dinner plate yet? Once there, you cannot ignore the pink that bleeds from the heart of the beet. It is a truly special property that has so much potential in the kitchen, especially when it comes to desserts.... Read More
As promised, some of my favorite recipes that feature beets.  If you are already a beet fanatic, maybe I am starting too simply for you, but knowing what I do about the bad rap beets get, I really want to start simple in hopes of converting a few of you. Beet & Apple Salad You may have noticed that my measurements are not often precise in my recipes, how can I... Read More
“The beet is the most intense of vegetables. The radish, admittedly, is more feverish, but the fire of the radish is a cold fire, the fire of discontent not of passion. Tomatoes are lusty enough, yet there runs through tomatoes an undercurrent of frivolity. Beets are deadly serious. Slavic peoples get their physical characteristics from potatoes, their smoldering inquietude... Read More
The Super Bowl is a food holiday whether you are a football fan or not.  Grocery stores put up displays featuring chips and guacamole, nacho fixings and all sorts of finger foods that are easy to eat while holding a beverage and jumping up and down screaming like a maniac.  According to the Hass Avocado Board, Super Bowl Sunday is one of the year's biggest... Read More
In keeping with our soup theme for the month, I present Creamy Potato Soup.  I usually avoid heavy and creamy soups simply for the caloric intake that they bring along with their delicious taste, but I did a remodel on this soup recently to make it more waist band friendly and came up with what I would call a winner! As you may know from reading these little posts, I... Read More
While visiting my family this fall in Brownsville, Oregon, we took a little trip to Randy’s Main Street coffee shop that is housed in the old butcher’s shop which incidentally was where I got my very first job, breaking down boxes for Mr. Ridinger. We ventured in on a cold day to find warm rolls fresh out of the oven and a Beef Barley soup of the day that smelled too good to... Read More
If you haven’t dusted off your soup pot yet, what are you waiting for? January and February are the two months of the year where my family eats soup more than any other food. One of my favorite mid winter soups is Coconut Red Lentil. It is a hearty and filling soup that you can have on the table in about 30 minutes! Although I have shared the recipe before, I will share again... Read More
The food on our holiday table is usually a celebration of the abundance that we have in our lives. In contrast, New Years Eve foods are a request for the abundance to continue. All over the world people celebrate the coming of the New Year with food that symbolizes money and luck. Greens are eaten because they look like dollars, peas and lentils because they resemble coins.... Read More
We eat Prime Rib for Christmas, always have.  The prime rib is always accompanied by mashed potatoes, gravy, creamed spinach and Yorkshire puddings.  As a child I remember my father carving the prime rib with his grandfather’s carving knife, which is a sight to behold.  The wood of the handle is polished to perfection with years and generations of use.  The... Read More
Ashland Food Co-op will close at 6:00 pm on Wednesday, December 24th and will be closed all day on Thursday, December 25th.This will allow all employees to enjoy Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with their families.Please let the signs on the front doors remind you that we will be closing early on Christmas Eve so you don’t get your heart set for some tasty Co-op treat or one... Read More
The shortest day of the year occurs this Saturday and making lanterns is a fun way to celebrate the transition into the dark of winter.  You will need:  a balloon, white or colored tissue paper, nature objects like bark or pine needles or seeds, white glue, scissors and bendable wire.  Pour glue into a container and add water to get a consistency that is a... Read More
Salt Dough OrnamentsThis week we are making salt dough which is a fun and versatile dough for making Christmas ornaments.  The basic recipe is:  combine 1 ½ cups of warm water with 1 cup of salt, add 4 cups of flour and knead by hand, adding more flour if needed to keep it from sticking to your hands. Roll dough to ¼” thickness and use your favorite holiday cookie... Read More
This morning as I dropped my daughter off at school, I noticed that the tree in front of the classroom was covered in pine cones that had been transformed with loving little fingers into feeders for the birds.  I instantly thought of the pine cone collection that was gathered this summer at one of our favorite camping spots and decided that friends and family would be... Read More
Choose the Deli to make your Holiday Meal Delicious and Easy Our Co-op Deli will once again be making our scrumptious ready to heat and serve Thanksgiving meals. We make everything from scratch in our homey co-op kitchen, from the pie crusts to the cornbread for the stuffing. All food is made fresh using the highest quality ingredients, all of our produce and grains are... Read More
Now that the national Health Care Marketplace is open, uninsured Oregon residents will use Cover Oregon to find medical and dental coverage, and financial help to pay for it. This process could be fairly impersonal and quite daunting. Your Co-op would like to help you traverse the new system.To do this, the board of directors has engaged Sue Carney, a local Cover Oregon... Read More
If you have been reading my blogs or articles in the sales flyer for awhile, then you know that I am an absolute celery root fanatic!  My love for this ugly, knobby, large and unwieldy root dates back to my childhood, where interestingly enough, I didn’t like it at all, but having it on our table so frequently throughout my formative years, brought it into my focus where... Read More
Every year, right about now, I start to gather recipes that I find intriguing and just may make it to my Thanksgiving table.  Some years I stick to tried and true family favorites that due to the sheer amount of times that I have prepared them, take very little effort.   Some years I give up on tradition entirely and eat crab or lobster or some other shellfish that... Read More
Halloween is a mixed bag of candy in my book. On the one hand, I love all the kiddos dressed up having fun, and on the other hand, the candy chock full of GMO ingredients that makes its way into our home is absolutely frightening! I want my daughter to dress up and enjoy the ritual of this holiday, but I don’t want her to eat anything that comes home in the pumpkin. Wouldn’... Read More
Continuing with the lunchbox theme and heading quickly into Halloween, I thought a good pumpkin recipe was in order. This recipe has a lot of ingredients, but the finished product is wheat free and sweetened with maple syrup. Baked into little loaf pans or muffin pans, it will easily pack into your child’s lunch for a homemade bite of deliciousness to warm them with love from... Read More
It seems that Rice Crispy Treats are synonymous with Halloween, why is that? Every magazine that I have thumbed through for the last month has had a Halloween theme with a ghost or pumpkin or witch shaped rice crispy treat at the center, and to make matters even more sugary, these treats are then dipped in chocolate. The fact that you can cut them into shapes makes them easy... Read More
In addition to the no meat or shellfish rule at my daughter’s school, there is also a no sugar rule for lunchboxes. So, Stella and I did some baking last weekend to come up with some yummy refined sugar free treats that we could pack into her lunch for the entire week. The recipe is a collage of many different recipes that were all close, but not quite. We had such a nice time... Read More
Packing a lunch for your child to take to school requires proper planning to avoid the lunches you pack ending up in the garbage or traded away. As we approached the school year, I purchased all of the required lunch box reusable paraphernalia required, and got to work packing lunches. Now only 30 days into the school year, my daughter has exclaimed “if I have to eat another... Read More
As we come to the conclusion of our boozy fruit series, I want to give you some other ideas to try. I have been having so much fun with this idea and have come up with some pretty exciting combinations that I cannot wait to taste! So far, I have preserved blackberries in bourbon, apples in brandy, plums in brandy, figs in rum, figs in gin and peaches in gin. I am looking... Read More
As promised, this week we are going to learn a little more about preserving fruit in alcohol, something I like to call Boozy Fruit. If you’ve never canned anything and/or the idea of cooking, stirring, and sterilizing jars is NOT your idea of a fun thing to do on a Saturday, then boozy fruit is for you. Once ready, boozy fruit can be baked into cakes, made into ice cream,... Read More
Some friends recently bought a house within walking distance to ours, and so the other day we walked over to welcome them to the neighborhood. Upon our arrival, I was absolutely delighted and astounded to see the abundant fruit trees and grape vines that are part of their property. The original owners had obviously taken great care of these trees, because although they need... Read More
I don’t always cook with cast iron while camping. Utilizing heavy duty foil is another great way to make delicious meals over the campfire. The difference in the finished product of cast iron vs. foil cooking is cooking in foil tends to lend itself better to steaming inside the pouch which is perfect for cooking fish to a tender consistency. Here is my favorite foil pouch... Read More
To continue on my cast iron theme for the month of August, I share with you another super simple and delicious recipe that is easy to make over a campfire. Like I mentioned earlier in this series, cast iron is a spectacular non stick pan if seasoned correctly. If not well seasoned, well…you get scrambled eggs with black specks in them which is what happened every time my dad... Read More
Here are some great tips to support healthy lungs!Antioxidants are famous cell protectors during oxidative stress from pollutants in the air. Formulas with Turmeric, Green Tea, Rosemary, CoQ10, and vitamin E are great choices.Chlorophyll is a wonderful way to boost oxygen and energy levels during times of heavy smoke saturation in the environment. Add a dropper to your water... Read More
You can cook anything over a campfire if you have cast iron. They can withstand the direct flame and intense heat that campfires are known for. Although I do love to cook, I tend to plan for more simple recipes while camping. I want to fill my days with hiking and swimming, kayaking and fishing and by the end of the day I want dinner to be simple and delicious. There is... Read More
So many local and organically grown foods can assist your lungs in managing this onslaught of smoke and can be found in our abundant produce department:• Dark greens and golden-orange vegetables are full of beta-carotene, a key nutrient in protecting the lungs. Examples are: carrots, winter squash, broccoli, parsley, kale and wheatgrass. The green veggies noted are also rich... Read More
One of the beautiful things about cooking with cast iron is its ability to hold a non stick surface without a chemical coating. This comes about from never using soap on your cast iron and keeping it properly seasoned. To season a new pan, preheat your oven to 300 degrees, while it’s preheating coat the pan in grease, lard, or oil. My grandma always used bacon fat, but I use... Read More
My collection of cast iron pots and pans are some of my most heartfelt and extremely heavy treasures. They originally were my grandma’s and when she couldn’t lift them anymore she passed them on to my mom and when she couldn’t lift them anymore she passed them on to me. When I use them, I like to imagine all of the family meals that have been cooked in these vessels: Grandma... Read More
It never ceases to amaze me, just how delicious a piece of grilled fruit can be. The natural sweetness of the fruit mixes with the smokiness of the grill and it is truly delicious. Here is a modified version of our Mango Salsa made with grilled fruits, perfect for your next fish taco dinner, enjoy!1 large slice of watermelon, keep rind on for grilling 2 large slices of galia... Read More
Hopefully, everyone is taking great care of their skin this summer by using sunscreen before they go out into the sun and reapplying often when sweating and while enjoying the water. Prevention is always the best remedy, but inevitably someone, usually me, will always overdo it and need some relief. Most important to remember when you are sun burnt, the body needs to... Read More
The sun is shining and the weather is sweet! I am training to run a half marathon next month, and I have been experimenting with making my own energy bars as I have found that when eaten before my runs, they tend to sit well in my tummy and give me the fuel that I need to get through the next mile. Here is a simple recipe that is a great to fuel your next outdoor adventure... Read More
I have been pondering so many ideas for this blog lately. I wanted something I haven’t previously written about and it is always helpful if the subject matter is meaningful to me as well. Mining for ideas, I cruised through the Deli Department today at the Co-op and shouted out, “Name a culinary delight that makes you think of summer!” There was a tiny moment of silence... Read More
This Friday marks the official start to summer, also known as the Summer Solstice. The day and night will be equal in length and although hot weather is just beginning, the days will start to get shorter until autumn arrives. It always seems such a paradox to me that summer, for which I have been so impatiently waiting, also brings with it the shortening of the days. So, no... Read More
Here is the recipe for the Muhammara dip that we make and sell in the Deli grab n go. The batch size has been reduced quite a bit so feel free to add a little more or less of whatever you feel it needs to create the taste profile you are looking for. Remember there are as many versions of Muhammara as there are people that make it so don’t be afraid to experiment and create... Read More
I am always on the lookout for new ideas and recipes to make in our deli. Recently, I was visiting Seattle and my sister took me to her favorite spot to get mezze. There I experienced a dip nestled in the middle of the hummus and the baba ganoush that knocked my socks off with the perfect combination of deep smokiness, nutty sweetness and tanginess right at the finish and I... Read More
Sometimes my herbs get so prolific that I can barely keep up with them. I usually try to harvest all season long to encourage them to grow, and then I have to find a way to use all of it. I throw large amounts into soups and our daily menu, and drying is an easy to way to prolong their life, but one of my favorite things to do is make compound butters. Simply, put a couple... Read More
Salt is needed in small amounts in order to maintain optimum health, but it also has a few culinary tricks up its sleeve. Adding salt to water will raise the temperature at which it boils and lower the temperature at which it freezes. Eggs boiled in salty water are easier to peel. Adding a pinch of non iodized salt to cream or egg whites before beating them will increase... Read More
Salt’s impact on human civilization precedes recorded history, and has influenced human existence in cultural, economic and of course culinary realms. Once traded ounce for ounce for gold, and used to pay people (hence the word salary), it is now a very common part of our recipes and kitchens. In the Deli, we use sea salt exclusively, but at home I also use kosher and Alaea... Read More
Mother’s Day is this week. I want to thank all of the mothers that bring their little ones into the Ashland Food Co-op. In addition to the ever popular life lessons learned here like how to steer a tiny shopping cart, and some things are free (like bananas!) you are also teaching your children about organic food, how to pick ripe produce, buying in bulk, community,... Read More
This is a great way to celebrate May Day with children, and the results are beautiful and delicious. You will need some freshly picked violets, 1 egg white, fine granulated sugar, a sheet pan, a small paint brush that has never been used for paint and waxed paper. Lay out your violets on the pan so they are easy to grab once your hands get sticky. Beat the egg white with a... Read More
If months have themes then April’s is Go Green. Green is literally everywhere you look. The plants are waking up and blooming, Earth Day promotes green eating, cleaning and living, and we want to see some Green in your mug as well. The Green Dream smoothie is on sale this week in our Juice & Java Bar. My favorite of all the smoothies we make, it is loaded with kale, has... Read More
Earth Day was first recognized and celebrated on April 22, 1970. Senator Nelson from Wisconsin spearheaded the idea after witnessing the destruction from a massive oil spill in 1969 that happened in Santa Barbara, California. He gathered a political crew of 85 members and got it on the national agenda. That year 20 million Americans hit the streets and parks and our capital... Read More
My daughter has been asking all winter long when we are going to get to go on another hike, and I can finally tell her “SOON!” Her favorite hike is Grizzly Peak. It is just long enough that we bring a lunch and enjoy a picnic at the top. The view is spectacular and we both marvel at how small we feel way up there on top of the world. Stella’s favorite hiking snack is... Read More
In honor of April Fool’s Day, here is a strawberry fool recipe. A fool is an English dessert and the earliest written recipe showed up in the mid 17th century! You can make a fool with any fruit and add any flavoring you want, so use this recipe as a base and experiment to find your own foolish creation. Wash and chop a pint of strawberries, mix with ¼ cup sugar or... Read More
We still have 2 weeks to go until winter is officially over, but it’s not too early to start thinking about getting a garden started. Peas are a very easy plant to grow, but they have an extremely short growing season, so you have to be ready to plant them soon. Traditionally I plant peas on St. Patrick’s Day. Planting peas is such a great project to do with children as the... Read More
Comfort food is a commonly used term to describe an entire genre of cooking that is so individually inspired that to try to categorize the food that makes a person feel comforted when the weather is cold and snowy, and sunlight is nowhere in sight is rather daunting.  I tend to think that comfort foods are foods that remind us of childhood or young adult hood when we... Read More
By Charlotte Vallaeys from the Cornocopia InstututeFor the first time, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has weighed in on organic foods for children.  Its news release was widely covered in the national media.While the AAP should be commended for acknowledging the potentially harmful effects of pesticide residues on conventional foods, their report—and... Read More
End of the Harvest Grilled PizzaBy Michele PryseMichele is a Family Food Educator at Oregon State University Extension Office here in Southern Oregon.We have been blessed to have such  extended sunny summer weather - great for ripening tomatoes!  Usually I have many, many green tomatoes on the vine at this time of the season that I know will never, ever... Read More
Rogue Co-ops, a unique partnership of four Southern Oregon cooperatives, has been honored for its successful teamwork and dedication to the community with the annual Collaboration Award presented by Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development Inc. (SOREDI). Comprised of Ashland Food Co-op, Medford Food Co-op, Rogue Federal Credit Union, and Grange Co-op, Rogue Co-ops... Read More
We turned off highway 101 and onto Rhododendron Drive. Right at the turn was a tiny store with a sign on the window, Real Food Co-op. I collect Co-ops like some people collect recipes or old cars. We didn’t have time to stop as we were overdue to meet my brother and his wife at their new Florence home. Sometime during the evening I asked them if they had visited the co-... Read More
After testing numerous brands of gluten free breads and rolls from near and far we have decided to start bringing in Canyon Bakehouse’s gluten free roll as a gluten free bread option on our sandwich bar.  This will join the ever popular teff wrap to round out our gluten free options.  We also have 2 new sandwiches in the grab n go that feature our new gluten free... Read More
By the time January rolls around, winter cooking styles begin to feel a little heavy and I am ready for something with some zing! Oranges, lemons, grapefruit, and limes to the rescue. It's the high tide of citrus season and it's going to last for another month or so. There is a great little tool called a zester that is specifically designed to take off just the outer citrus... Read More
In the dark of winter, we are saved by citrus!  Their unique flavors and juicy flesh are a joyful relief from dreary grey days and cooked vegetables.  If you have the time, buy one of each of the varieties listed below and discover the unique flavor profile each has to offer. It’s rather like enjoying a box of chocolates when you don’t know what’s inside.  The... Read More
If you were on a quiz show and they asked you, for a million dollars, where Swiss chard came from originally, what would you say? Well, it’s kind of a trick question, because it sure sounds like it’s from Switzerland. To win the big pot, you’d need to know that Swiss chard came to us from the Mediterranean region. The Swiss moniker came about when 19th century seed catalogs... Read More