From the Board President: See What’s Poppin’ at the Co-op

Before we get into this month’s column, I want to take a moment to thank everyone who helped make this year’s Fall Food Fest a smashing success! From the farmers, producers, and restaurateurs to the musicians, to the face painters, to all the volunteers who helped move tables and chairs, hung posters around town, and more. This is what it means to build community. This is what happens when people work together for a cause. It’s amazing to see. I can’t wait to see all the good things that happen after we open a store!

Now, on to our topic…Continue reading

Fall is here…Find out what local producers are offering Co-op member-owners this month

We are thrilled to partner this October with FOUR! local producers who not only provided free samples and information at our fifth annual Fall Food Fest last month, but also have each generously offered approximately $20-worth of their fall bounty to help us grow more member-owners in October. If you are not yet a member-owner, this is a great month to become one. Join by the end of the day on Sunday, and you’ll be entered into the drawing for that week’s incentive. Already a member-owner? Encourage a friend to join and, if they write your name in regarding how they heard about the Co-op, you’ll also be entered into the drawing.

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Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

Well, friends, fall has graced us with its presence. Nice! The colors, smells, tastes, and feel of this time of year make me happy to discover new recipes that are simple and tasty. This recipe happens to be colorful too which makes it taste that much better. It has quickly been added to my “Make that again” list. It was so good! We get to use some scrumptious in-season veggies, fresh herbs, and warming spices. You may have already noticed the jar of Frontier Co-op cumin in my photo. Definitely one of my favorites! The recipe called for yellow pepper, but I had red on hand. It also calls for shredded mozzarella but I used fresh. The flavors were so tasty, and the leftovers didn’t last long! This one gets two thumbs up! Give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.
Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

Serves 4

Ingredients:

3 small or 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced (about 3 cups)
1 pound ground turkey
1 yellow bell pepper
1 cup onion, diced
½ cup mozzarella, shredded
½ cup water
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1.5 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

Instructions:

In a large cast iron skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
Add garlic and cook for 1 minute and then add ground turkey.
Use a wooden spoon to break apart meat and continue cooking approximately 8 minutes until browned.
Add cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper. Stir well to incorporate.
Add onion and bell pepper, and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add diced sweet potato and water.
Stir and cover with a lid for approximately 6-8 minutes until the sweet potatoes soften.
Add additional water during this process if needed to keep the meat from drying out.
Remove lid and add additional salt and pepper if needed.
Top with shredded mozzarella and allow it to melt.
Remove skillet from heat and garnish with fresh cilantro before serving.

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Member Spotlight: Brenna Griffin

This month’s member spotlight is volunteer extraordinaire and outgoing board member Brenna Griffin! Brenna has been involved with the Co-op almost since the very beginning. In her six years of service she has served on the Membership Committee, later becoming co-chair, and has spent the past three years serving on the Board of Directors.

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Board Happenings: September 2018

Take a minute to see what your board has been up to!
– Through July of this year our volunteers have donated over 2,400 hours of their time, resulting in the equivalent of over $60,000! Thank you to all of our amazing volunteers! We wouldn’t be able to do this work without you!
– Our Annual Member Meeting is coming up on October 23rd. Members will receive an email invitation to the event. This is a member’s only event, but if you want to join in you can become a member at the meeting.
– Don’t forget to vote for your Board of Directors. Voting is one of the major benefits to being a co-op member, so don’t miss your opportunity to exercise your democratic rights.
– We are on track to have our business plan finished in November. The Finance team has been working hard with the Small Business Incubator at the University of Northern Iowa to develop a strong plan that will set us up for success.
– The next board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 17th, at 7pm at Millrace. All members are welcome to attend the open sessions of the meeting.

New September Business Partners

This month, we have two new area business partners joining the more than 75 other businesses that are providing amazing deals to card-carrying Cedar Falls Food Co-op member-owners.

 

 

Natural Soy Products, Ltd. (Clean Environment Co.)

Located at 1935 Main Street in Cedar Falls, this local business provides environmentally friendly household cleaning products that are highly effective while also keeping toxins at bay. This company is built on the premise that cleaning products should not only clean well, but also be kind to people who use them as well as the world we live in. Co-op member-owners, stop in and they will give you a 10% discount from the list price in the store.

Slumberland Furniture

Are you shopping for new furniture? Are you a Co-op member-owner? Then you are in luck…Cedar Falls has another new business partner. The Slumberland Furniture Cedar Falls location is offering Co-op member-owners $50 off of qualifying purchase of $99 or more (exclusions include hot buys, special purchases, clearance items, tempur-pedic and premier mattresses). Soon, you’ll be relaxing on/with your new furniture while reveling in your savings!

 

From the Coordinator: September 2018

Willy Street Co-op (Madison, WI)

 

Have you heard of the local foods movement? Why is this a nationwide phenomenon? There is more demand than ever to know where our food is coming from and more people are deciding to vote with their pocketbooks, and in this case, really putting their money where their mouths are. The Cedar Falls Food Co-op is committed to providing locally sourced products on our shelves once our store is open. Since our store will be a one-stop-shop model (meaning that you can find your grocery needs all in one store), we will also have products from further afield, but we will source locally whenever possible.Continue reading

No Churn Avocado Ice Cream

We have not had a shortage of hot days this summer and what goes better with a hot summer day than some yummy, creamy, sweet avocado ice cream? Yup, avocado. I was searching for a recipe for a dessert that would be refreshing and easy to make that would go with a light summer lunch of gazpacho. I wanted something easy, tasty, fresh and not have to use a lot of ingredients, when, bingo, I happened across this recipe and photo of No-Churn Avocado Ice Cream! Sold! It looked and sounded delicious. I had the perfect avocado on my counter and just needed to get some sweetened condensed milk and heavy whipping cream and I was all set. I thought it would taste really good after some spicy gazpacho, and it did. With only 3 ingredients to put together, it was super easy, and it even turned out to look just like the recipe photo, which usually doesn’t happen. I made it the night before and put it in the freezer according to the directions. It set up very nicely and was still soft enough to dish up fairly easily. Do yourself a favor and try this recipe from:https://kirbiecravings.com/no-churn-avocado-ice-cream. It’s wonderful!

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Member Spotlight: Adel and Tom Kessler

This month’s member spotlight is Adel and Tom Kessler. Adel and Tom met when they were introduced by a mutual friend when Adel was a student at UNI studying Elementary and Special Education and Tom was working at the reference desk at Rod Library. While not originally from the Cedar Valley they both have been happy to call this place home for some time.

 

Now both retired, they enjoy spending their time reading, gardening, travelling, and exploring new places to eat with friends and family. They also love to explore the new locally owned stores and restaurants that have opened up recently. When asked what they love about living in the Cedar Valley, they couldn’t pick just one thing! “There are so many wonderful events, activities to enjoy, volunteer for… the list goes on and on.”

 

They decided to invest in the co-op because they believe it’s important to have access to healthy food and they see this as another way to invest in the community. Both are active in a number of volunteer organizations, so being a co-op member is another way they can give back. With our member numbers growing, they’re getting more excited about the co-op becoming a reality. They can’t wait to have fresh, local items available year round.

 

Thanks Adel and Tom for being co-op members!

Board Happenings: August 2018

Take a minute to see what your board has been up to!
– This year along our volunteers have donated 2114 hours of their time to the Co-op, resulting in the equivalent of over $52,0000 of wages! All this hard work is paying off as we’re on track to top 900 members in September. We wouldn’t be able to do this without our amazing community supporting us along the way, so THANK YOU!
– Board elections are right around the corner. If you’re interested in running for the board, online applications are due by September 8th. If you have any questions about what board service entails, you can contact any one of our board members or info@cedarfallsfood.coop for more information.
– We were given the opportunity to view some potential sites recently, and we’re on the verge of announcing where the future home of the Cedar Falls Food Co-op will be. Be on the lookout for this exciting news!