Monday, March 31, 2008

Spring is time for fresh salads!

Here are some recipes to make your own salad dressings to enjoy the fresh lettuce that is starting to show up in the stores. Remember that while making dressing from scratch is a great way to avoid high fructose corn syrup and artificial colors and flavors as well as gluten and casein, they also will not have any preservatives and won't last as long.

Here are my three favorite recipes -

Thousand Island Salad Dressing
1 cup mayonnaise (I use Spectrum Canola Mayo)
1/3 cup ketchup (I use organic)
2 tablespoons vinegar (I use Bragg’s apple cider vinegar)
4 teaspoons organic raw sugar (optional)
¼ cup sweet pickle relish (I use my own home canned)
1 tablespoon chopped onion
1 hard cooked egg, chopped into very small pieces
Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
Mix all ingredients together. Chill well.
Makes 2 cups

Poppy Seed Salad Dressing
¾ cup organic raw sugar
¾ cup salad oil (I use olive oil)
¾ cup vinegar (I use Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar)
1 to 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
Combine all ingredients together in a glass jar. Shake well. Refrigerate. Makes 1 ½ to 2 cups dressing.

GFCF Ranch Salad Dressing or Dip
1 cup firm silken tofu
¼ cup mayonnaise (I use Spectrum Canola Mayo)
2 tablespoons oil (I use olive oil)
4 teaspoons lemon juice
¼ teaspoon dried or 1 teaspoon fresh dill weed
¼ teaspoon saltpinch of garlic powder
Blend in a blender until smooth and creamy. Chill.
Made as directed it is thick enough for a dip – if you prefer thinner for a salad dressing, thin with non dairy milk.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

We joined a co-op today

Our income tax refund is being put to good use. First we bought a new washer and dryer (my old washer doesn't even have a dial on it any more - it was you turn what used to be a knob and pray you get a wash cycle and not a rinse one.....), then we joined a CSA and now the last of it went for a membership at our local food co-op. Joining a co-op has such great benefits for those of us on special diets and trying to eat healthier.

If you are local and curious, we joined the Mississippi Market. The reason - it's the co-op that is closest to us. I do shop sometimes at a couple of other co-ops, but I shop at Mississippi Market the most and it is the closest to our home.

The costs and benefits vary by co-op. Our cost was $90.00 and that is a one time payment - not a yearly payment. They even offer that you can make payments - 4 payments of $25.00 if you can't afford the whole amount up front - and you can take up to 18 months to pay! For the $90.00, we get 10% off a single grocery purchase up to $100.00 ($10.00 off max) every other month ($60.00 a year - so your membership cost is already down to $30.00 for the first year), 10% off special orders (I can order a case of say Ian's allergen free fish sticks and get 10% off the cost), member only specials every month and a share of the profits in profitable years. On top of all of that, we got a coupon book in our new member packet with 14 coupons in it for free products - most of them products that we already use.

Natural food co-ops tend to carry more of our GFCF products - so if you are already shopping at one and not a member, you really should look into joining. If you aren't shopping at a co-op and wonder if there is one near you - here is a website to check out -

Monday, March 17, 2008

Now is the time to join a CSA for 2008

Joining a CSA is a great way to eat organically and keep costs down. CSA stands for community supported agriculture. What you do is buy a share of the harvest - and then you get a weekly box of veggies from the farm. Here are some links to find out more information and to find a CSA in your area -;; and if you live locally here in the Twin Cities, here is a link to a list of the CSA's in our area -

There are many different options to consider when joining a CSA. Last year we joined late and were limited by who still had openings - many CSA's sell out early. We had an alright experience last year but we are switching CSA's this year. This is the one we are going with this year - The reasons that Harmony Farm appeals to us are it has a longer season - 30 weeks instead of 17, (since we eat 52 weeks out of the year, I'd like to find a CSA to provide fresh organic veggies as many of those 52 weeks as possible) the list of the veggies that they grow are mostly ones that my family enjoys eating (while it was fun trying some new veggies last year - it would have been nice to have more old favorites) and they offer a monthly payment plan - where the money can be taken right out of your checking account every month.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

A new name for a familar product

Wellshire Farms and Wellshire Kids products are now Garrett County at all stores except Whole Foods. Whole Foods is continuing to use the Wellshire name.

Here are what the chicken bites look like now in the new packaging. The product is the same, the name is all that has changed.