Friday Finds: August 18, 2017

Take a look at what's new at Mariposa Food Co-op.

Philly Bread loose Philly Muffins and hoagie rolls

Philly Muffins

Philly Bread is focused on sourcing the highest caliber grains directly from the farmer and milling them in-house just prior to mixing the dough to unlock maximum flavor. Loose hoagie rolls and Philly Muffins can be found in our bakery department. 

Alaffia Coconut Reishi Purifying Facial Cleanser

Alaffia Charcoal Facial Cleanser

Alaffia's facial cleanser contains soothing coconut, nourishing reishi, and detoxifying charcoal. It gently cleanses the skin, removes impurities, and is non-stripping. Plus, all Alaffia products are fair trade! 

Life-Flo 100% Pure Magnesium Oil

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Good for muscular repair and nerve transmission. Easily absorbed through the skin. 

Castello Havarti

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Creamy, buttery and mild. Pairs will with crackers, vegetables, and shellfish. 

Conebella Farms Cheddar

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Conebella Farm is an award-winning 100% Ayrshire dairy farm located in Chester County, Pennsylvania. Conebella Farm cheese is made from all natural ingredients with the milk from our own cows, which is both antibiotic-free and hormone free. 

3 ways to detox using activated charcoal

Activated charcoal, sometimes referred to as activated carbon, has a long history of use throughout the world. Dating as far back as 400 BCE to purify water, research suggests activated charcoal may support total body cleansing due to its highly absorptive properties. 

Derived from non GMO coconut shells, our new activated charcoal powder makes a great base for these 3 easy detox tips. 

1. Create a skin mask

Add water or apple cider vinegar to create a paste. 

Activated charcoal skin mask

2. Create a toothpaste

Add water or apple cider vinegar to create a paste. This paste will also brighten your teeth!

Solaray activated charcoal powder

3. Add to a glass of water

Your water may turn black, but it's tasteless.  

Activated charcoal water

 

Activated charcoal is highly absorbent and may reduce the effectiveness of some medications or nutritional supplements. Use product as directed on the product label. 

Friday Finds: August 11, 2017

Take a look at what's new at Mariposa Food Co-op. 

Vegan Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream Pints

Vegan Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream

Vegans rejoice! Ben & Jerry's vegan pints are here. 

Conebella Farms Cheese Curds

Cheese curds

Produced locally in Elverson, PA with milk from Ayrshire cows, these curds are great in the kitchen for frying or melting but also fresh out the container with some salami and crusty bread in the shade of your favorite tree on a West Philly summer's day.

Sunbeam 'Bug Me Not' Candles

Sunbeam Citronella Candles

Keep the bugs away with these candle tins and votives. Try citronella cedar wood and eucalyptus, lemongrass, cedar. 

Heritage Store Black Castor Oil

Black Castor Oil

100% natural and unrefined. Nourishes dry skin and hair. Warm it up as a massage oil for joints, muscles and skin.

Solaray Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder

Activated Charcoal Powder

We're happy to introduce charcoal powder to our shelves! Derived non-GMO, food-grade, coconut shell, Solaray coconut charcoal powder is great for a digestive detox, skin care and oral care. 

How to preserve herbs

Culinary herbs are a key ingredient in many foods, but with fall rapidly approaching, it's time to start thinking about preserving your fresh garden herbs. The best way to save the taste of herbs from your garden is to preserve them before winter. While some herbal plants, such as parsley, will survive many months indoors in pots if brought in before a frost, most herbs are better frozen or dried to use in the months ahead. Dried and frozen herbs are easy to store and take up less room than a fresh herb plant. In fact, 10 pounds of fresh herbs equals about 1 pound of dried herbs. You can also process your herbs by making pesto or herb vinegars, to preserve their flavors.

Here are some tips on the best ways to preserve your herbs.

Harvest your summer herbs to savor their flavor all winter.

Harvest your summer herbs to savor their flavor all winter.

Harvesting herbs

Herbs are best harvested before flower buds form and in the morning before the sun has evaporated the essential oils in the leaves. This late in the year many herb plants may have started to flower. To create higher quality leaves for storing, snip the flower buds to encourage new side shoots to grow. A few weeks later these leafy side shoots will be good candidates for harvesting and preserving. When harvesting branches of herbs, snip just above a leaf to encourage more growth during the waning days of fall. Always select stems that have little damage from disease and insects.

Quick drying herbs

Herbs for drying can be grouped into two categories; quick drying herbs and slow drying herbs. Quick drying herbs include lavender, marjoram, mint, oregano, rosemary, and sage. These herbs are best bundled together in bunches of 10 to 12 stems, tied with rubber bands and hung upside down in an airy, cool room out of direct sunlight to keep the essential oils in the leaves from volatilizing. The bundles of herbs will dry in about 1 to 2 weeks, depending on the weather. Humid weather slows the drying process. Once dry, strip the leaves off the stems and store. Dried herbs are best stored in a dark place and used within three months of storage for best flavor.

For the best results, know the difference between slow and quick drying herbs.

For the best results, know the difference between slow and quick drying herbs.

Slow drying herbs

These herbs don't dry well in bunches and are best if separated from their stalks and dried on screens. Herbs such as basil, dill leaves, lovage, parsley, and thyme fall into this category. Remove the leaves, cut them into small pieces, and lay them on screens for air drying or place on a cookie sheet to dry in the oven or a dehydrator. Set the oven or dehydrator to a low temperature (below 150°F), and stir often until the leaves are dry. Store in glass jars.

Freezing herbs

Herbs with high water content, such as basil, lovage, mint, lemon balm, and tarragon can also be frozen. Freezing preserves herbs in a bright green state and makes them available for adding to soups and stews in winter. Wash herb stems and remove the leaves. Pat the leaves dry and place on a cookie sheet or tray, separating them so they don't freeze together in a solid mass. Cover and place in the freezer until frozen. Store in an airtight container or freezer bags for up to one year.

Another handy way to freeze herbs is in ice cube trays. This is a great way to preserve combinations of herbs you use in special soups and stews in winter. Stuff three or four individual leaves or chopped herbs in a ice cube tray and fill with broth or water. Freeze, then remove the blocks and store in freezer bags. 

Pestos & vinegars

I love eating pesto in summer and preserving pesto for winter, too. I use the ice cube tray method making batches of pesto by filling the trays and storing the cubes in freezer bags. Don't feel limited to basil pesto either. The word pesto, in Italian, means to pound or crush, so try out different leaf combinations like spinach and parsleyarugula and parsley or kale and sun-dried tomatoes. Vinegars are a great way to preserve herbs such as basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary. Use three to four sprigs of herbs per one cup of vinegar. Experiment with white vinegar, cider vinegar and wine vinegar, using different herbal combinations and amounts.

Collecting herb seeds

Some herb plants are best preserved by collecting the seeds. Dill, fennel, and coriander are some of the most popular herbs whose seeds are used in cooking. To collect herb seeds, let the plants flower and form seed heads. When the seed head begins to yellow and dry, but before the seeds start dropping, harvest the head and cover it with a brown paper bag, securing the bottom with an elastic band. Hang it upside down indoors. Wait a week or so to let the herb seeds mature and dry. Periodically shake the bag to dislodge the seeds into the bag. Store seeds in a glass jar in a dark location. Use within six months for best flavor.

Roasted Sweet Corn Bread

The perfect slightly sweet addition to a main course. Use fresh, non GMO corn for that local flavor or substitute frozen corn in the off season.  

Local non-GMO corn bread

Ingredients

  • 1 ear sweet corn (2 if small)
  • 1 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup plain nonfat yogurt
  • 2 large eggs

Preparation

  1. To roast the corn, heat the oven to 400°F., and place the husked corn on an oiled sheet pan. Roast, turning every 5 minutes until the corn is browned and soft. Let cool and then cut the kernels from the cob. You should get about 1 cup.
  2. For the cornbread, heat the oven to 400°F. Butter or grease an 8-inch square metal pan. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder and salt, and whisk to combine. Place the yogurt, melted butter and eggs in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Pour the yogurt mixture over the cornmeal mixture and stir until almost mixed, then add the roasted corn and stir just until the ingredients are combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the pan comes out with no wet batter attached. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes before serving. Cut 3 by 3 to make 9 squares.  

Serving Suggestion

Cornbread is always a treat, but when you have some leftover grilled corn, you have a fantastic addition to a pan of golden goodness. The one makes a great side for beans, soups and greens.

Kale-Walnut Pesto with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

No need to wait until summer's basil bounty to make pesto—you can enjoy a flavorful kale pesto any time of the year. Valued as much for its taste and texture as its nutrients, this kale pesto is simple and robust and is delicious tossed with pasta or as a sauce for pizza or a crostini. This is also an excellent use for extra kale from the garden or CSA share—and it freezes well to boot.

Kale Pesto Bow Tie Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1 large bunch kale (about 6 cups of leaves)
  • 5 sun-dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Salt to taste

Preparation

  1. Place sun-dried tomatoes in a small dish and add boiling water, just to cover. Set aside while they soften.
  2. Strip the kale greens from the thicker ribs. Bring a large pot of salted water to a gentle boil. Add the kale to the water and blanch for 30 seconds or less. Remove the greens immediately and place in an ice bath.
  3. Remove kale from the ice bath, squeeze to remove the water then place it in a food processor. Chop the sun-dried tomatoes and add those, along with the garlic, Parmesan, walnuts, lemon juice and a pinch of salt, to the food processor.
  4. With the food processor running, drizzle in the olive oil, scraping down the sides as needed. Adjust the salt to taste.

Serving Suggestion

Toss with pasta and top with additional Parmesan and toasted walnuts, if desired, or use as a sauce for pizza or crostini.

 

Reprinted by permission from StrongerTogether.coop. Find articles about your food and where it comes from, recipes and a whole lot more at www.strongertogether.coop.

Raspberry Agave Sorbet

Sorbet is a refreshing and light alternative to ice cream. Try it layered in parfaits, floated in berry sangria, or on top of another berry desserts, such as cobbler. In this version, using agave syrup means that you can skip the traditional step of making a syrup from sugar, since agave dissolves in cold water.

Raspberry Sorbet

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces frozen or fresh raspberries
  • 1/2 cup light agave syrup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Equipment

  • Ice cream maker or food processor

Preparation

  1. If using an ice cream maker, have it chilled and ready to go (if using the freezer method, have an ice cube tray or cookie tin lined with parchment paper ready to go). Place a fine wire screen strainer over a bowl, which you'll use to strain the raspberry puree.
  2. In a food processor or blender, puree the raspberries until smooth. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the puree into the wire strainer, and then to press the puree through. Scrape and move the fruit pulp until all you have left are seeds. You should have about one cup of puree. Stir in the agave, water and vanilla, then chill until very cold.
  3. Use the ice cream maker to freeze the sorbet. If desired, transfer to a storage tub and freeze until ready to use. (If using the freezer method, pour the sorbet mixture into the ice cube trays or onto the parchment lined cookie tray and freeze. Break the frozen sorbet mixture into chunks, if using a cookie tray, and puree the chunks in a food processor before serving.)

 

Photo via Creative Commons. 

Authored by Robin Asbell. Reprinted by permission from StrongerTogether.coop. Find articles about your food and where it comes from, recipes and a whole lot more at www.strongertogether.coop.

Goddess Quinoa Bowl

Veggies, whole grains and Sriracha tahini dressing make this flavorful, easy, one-bowl meal a perfect addition to your weeknight dinner rotation. This recipe is very versatile - swap ingredients for your favorite veggies.

Quinoa Bowl

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry quinoa or bulgur
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon water, divided
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tamari sauce plus 1 teaspoon, divided
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 cup raw unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 bunch Tuscan kale, thinly sliced
  • 2 large carrots, shredded
  • 2 medium avocados, halved and pitted

Preparation

  1. Cook the quinoa or bulgur. In a small pot, bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil, then add the grain. Return to a boil, and if using quinoa, reduce the heat to low and cook for 14 minutes, covered. For bulgur, bring to a boil for 1 minute, then cover and let stand for 15 minutes. Fluff the finished grain with a fork.
  2. While the grain cooks, place the tahini, cider vinegar, one tablespoon each tamari, honey, Sriracha sauce and water in a small bowl and stir with a fork until smooth. Add a bit more water if the dressing is too thick.
  3. Place the pumpkin seeds in a small sauté pan and swirl over medium-high heat. When they begin to pop and become fragrant, stir in the tamari. The tamari will coat the seeds and the pan will be dry. Transfer to a bowl to cool.
  4. Place a quarter of the cooked grains in each of four low, wide bowls. Arrange the raw kale and carrots on top of the grains, then slice the avocado halves in the skin and carefully scoop them out with a spoon. Fan half an avocado over each bowl. Top with sauce and pumpkin seeds.

Serving Suggestion

Grain and noodle bowls are the way to go for simple, flexible meals. The easy tahini dressing has enough Sriracha sauce to make it exciting, but if you don't like it hot you can always cut the amount in half. Customize with your favorite cooked or shredded veggies, proteins or sauces.

 

Reprinted by permission from StrongerTogether.coop. Find articles about your food and where it comes from, recipes and a whole lot more at www.strongertogether.coop.

How to choose and store tofu

Soft, firm and extra-firm tofu are not only a delicious source of protein but also provide the basis for everything from sauces to stirfries and scrambles. Shefaly Ravula demystifies the most common types of tofu and offers tips on how to use and store them. She demonstrates how to make an orange dream silken smoothie. Once you have the technique down, customize this creamy treat with your choice of fruits, protein powder or flavorings.

Budget Friendly Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

Alla cacciatora refers to a meal prepared "hunter-style" with onions, herbs, and local veggies. Have dinner ready by the time you get home by prepping the ingredients the night before. 

Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore

Ingredients

  • 1 14-ounce can Woodstock diced tomatoes
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • ½ cup Field Day chicken broth
  • 4 ounces Muir Glen tomato paste
  • 6 chicken legs, skinless
  • 2 cups brown rice

Preparation

In a large slow-cooker, combine the tomatoes, onion, green pepper, zucchini, celery, garlic, basil, oregano, salt, red wine, chicken broth and tomato paste. Stir to mix, then add the chicken legs and press down to cover them with the vegetable and spice mixture as much as possible. Set the cooker on low and cook for 7 hours.

Start cooking the rice on the stove about 45 minutes before the chicken is finished cooking, using approximately 4 cups of water for the 2 cups of rice.

When chicken is cooked, taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Serve a cup of cooked brown rice in a wide bowl or pasta plate, with a chicken leg and vegetable sauce.

 

Reprinted by permission from StrongerTogether.coop. Find articles about your food and where it comes from, recipes and a whole lot more at www.strongertogether.coop.