Fiery Ginger Farm
West Sacramento Urban Farm
Fiery Ginger Farm is a West Sacramento Urban Farm. Shayne, from Stockton, and Hope, from Michigan, both worked in farms or gardens and teaching in grade schools. They are both graduates of the California Farm Academy with the Center for Land-Based Learning.
Currently, at the Co-op, we carry their Loose Spring Salad Mix, Sunflower Sprouts, Gypsy Pepper, and Heirloom Tomatoes. Keep an eye on our signs in store to see what new things we bring in from Fiery Ginger.
“to grow the highest quality food using sustainable practices, deliver hands-on, ag-based educational experiences, and develop community where we farm. We believe that urban farms are powerful agents of change for the environment, the food system and the cities we service.”
Welcome to the Co-op, Flying V!
Flying V Farm is a new Davis Food Co-op vendor, thanks to the help of Kitchen Table Advisors. Flying V is a certified organic worker-owned farm in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, just 60 miles from the Co-op. They work together to produce food in a way that nourishes our community, stewards the land, and empowers workers. They strive for a more socially and ecologically just rural economy by practicing worker-ownership and collective care.
Flying V delivers their produce to us in clean, reusable tubs. This helps cut costs and waste for both of us. We snapped this pic on Friday, when Flying V delivered their first batch of produce to us! We received gorgeous beets, little gem lettuce heads, and more.
Meet the Team
Lucy O’Dea – harvest, sales & events manager
Cody Curtis — field, perennials, & site manager
Katie Lewis — assistant field manager
Monday, May 24th, is National Asparagus Day
We love this spring staple at the Co-op and hope you find something celebratory about asparagus too!
A love affair for the ages
5,000 years ago, Egyptians used asparagus in rituals as offerings, and as food and medicine. Archeologists found asparagus, along with fig and melon, residue on ancient dinnerware possibly belonging to Queen Nefertiti. 3,000 years ago, Caesar Augustus created the “asparagus fleet,” a flotilla of his fastest ships to find the vegetable and bring it to the alps where it could be frozen for later use. A recipe for cooking asparagus from this time appears in one of the oldest surviving cookbooks. 600 years ago, asparagus’s popularity spread to the nobility of France, Germany, and England. French king Louis XIV supped on spears the size of swan’s feathers. 300 years ago, asparagus became widely available to most people and had made its way to North America via colonialism.
Today, asparagus is grown and eaten all over the world. Top producers include China, Peru, Mexico, Germany, and Thailand. It may be native to Europe, North Africa, and western Asia, but the crop does well in many parts of the U.S. We prefer local asparagus, which is available at the Co-op throughout the season. Asparagus contains more glutathione, a powerful antioxidant, than any other vegetable! The tender, green stalks pair well with olive oil, aged cheese, bacon, sausage, lamb, prosciutto, cream, eggs, butter, shallots, fresh herbs, yeasty breads, like sourdough and wheat, and grains such as Arborio rice, quinoa and farro.
California is one of the top producers of asparagus in the United States and it takes time and care to harvest! Each spear is harvested by hand. Farmworkers clear out 9 inches of soil around each stalk to reach the base before each spear is snipped. We’re grateful to our farmers and farmworkers for taking the care to bring us this spring specialty!
Storing asparagus: asparagus should be trimmed approximately ½ inch from the bottom and then stored upright in a glass or bowl filled with enough water to cover stems, as you would do with flowers in a vase. Keep refrigerated.
You can find a Kids at the Co-op recipe and coloring page here!
Building a Cooperative Future
In the spirit of cooperation, the Davis Food Co-op wants to take the opportunity to share the visionary and necessary work being done by the Sonoma-based Cooperative Food Empowerment Directive (CoFED). CoFED is a, “QBIPOC-led organization that partners with young folks of color from poor and working-class backgrounds to meet our communities’ needs through food and land co-ops.”
Since 2011, CoFED has developed 12 cooperative projects, trained more than 600 emerging cooperative leaders, and grew a community of nearly 4,000 supporters across North America. Through cooperative values, economics, and strategies, young BIPOC folks develop leadership skills for collective liberation and a more cooperative future.
In addition to food justice programs offered by CoFED, the team has made an extensive archive of free resources. These include guides for Starting a Student Food Co-op, Guide for Scaling Your Co-op, and a Guide for Creating a Pilot Project. CoFED also provides an extensive list of “Co-op Resources 101” which includes information about co-ops in general, starting a co-op, our food system, business advice, links to loan and grant programs, land and farming education, multilingual resources, and more.
Build, Unlearn, Decolonize – The Build, Unlearn, Decolonize (BUD) learning series is a 5-week virtual education intensive designed with love for Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian and Pacific Islander youth who are working in co-ops and collectives to grow community health and wealth through food and land. The 2020 BUD Cohort is pictured above.
Racial Justice Fellowship – CoFED’s Racial Justice Fellowship is a 6-month opportunity for young cooperators of color working to close the racial wealth gap by advancing community ownership of land and the food system.
MyceliYUM – MyceliYUM is new national network of cooperators of color advancing food and land justice where young people can organize to shift policy. MyceliYUM members also benefit from CoFED’s membership in the HEAL Food Alliance (HEAL), Wallace Center’s Food Systems Leadership Network, and New Economy Coalition.
Support CoFED’s Vision for a Cooperative Future
Much of CoFED’s work is funded through grassroots donations. If you’ve found your way to this blog post, chances are you believe in cooperation and the role it will play in our collective future. Supporting CoFED’s work with a monetary donation is one way to help ensure that future, while also giving tangible support to young QBIPOC folks fighting for food and land justice and our collective food system.
In February 2021, the Davis Food Co-op was able to support CoFED’s work with a $500 dollar donation. Click below to join your Co-op and CoFED in building a collective future.
The blog post was published with permission from CoFED.
Sample Pack Guide
Tangy Classics Sample Pack
From left to right: Cara Cara Orange, Oro Blanco Grapefruit, Navel Orange, Clementine
Cara Cara Orange: pinky-orange flesh with tangy hints of blackberry and cranberry
Oro Blanco Grapefruit: pale, nearly seedless flesh with a sweet honeysuckle flavor and almost no bitterness
Rainwater Navel Orange: juicy and flavorful Washington Navel orange grown in Winters, CA
Clementine: these sweet and seedless are the smallest member of the mandarin/tangerine family
Tart Adventure Sample Pack
From left to right: Bergamot Orange, Nagami Kumquat, Ruby Red Grapefruit, Wekiwa Tangelo
Bergamot Orange: this yellow-fleshed orange is more bitter than a grapefruit, but less sour than a lemon and has a very aromatic rind; typically only used for its rind and juice
Nagami Kumquat: sweet rind with juicy and spicy flesh
Ruby Red Grapefruit: deep pink flesh that tastes sweeter than standard grapefruits
Wekiwa Tangelo: bright orange juicy flesh that tastes sweet with mild acidity
Twisted Favorite Sample Pack
From left to right: Blood Orange, Mandarinquat, Meyer Lemon, Pearl Tangelo
Blood Orange: deep red flesh with flavor notes of raspberries and pomegranates
Mandarinquat: sweet flavor with a crunchy bite and can be eaten whole
Meyer Lemon: low acidity with sweet, zesty flavor and floral undertones
Pearl Tangelo: golden-hued flesh with a sweet, grapefruit-like flavor
Staff Picks Sample Pack
From left to right: Pummelo, Satsuma Mandarin, Late Lane Orange, Tango Mandarin
Pummelo: pale pink flesh with a balanced sweet-tart flavor
Satsuma Mandarin: one of the sweetest mandarins with bright orange flesh
Late Lane Orange: late season navel with juicy segments and big orange flavors
Tango Mandarin: seedless dark orange flesh with a rind rich with oil and deeply aromatic when pierced or muddled
Local, sustainable meat is better
Globally, about 80% of agricultural land is used for raising livestock. Due to improper grazing management, desertification is quickly degrading the productivity of the land we use to raise our food. Confined Animal Feeding Operations further contribute to deforestation and land degradation, global warming, poor animal welfare, and low-quality meat. Reducing our meat consumption in combination with choosing local meat that regenerates the land can restore soil health, reduce carbon emissions, and produce stronger, healthier animals.
Invest in your Community
Supporting local farms and ranches today is a good way to ensure they’ll be there tomorrow. In addition to making a personal investment in your community and supporting local families, buying local means preserving open space and farmland, improving local soil health, sequestering carbon from the atmosphere, reducing your carbon footprint, and preserving genetic diversity among crops and livestock your local farmers grow. Lastly, and definitely not least, local food is of the highest quality. With shorter times between harvesting and consumption, local food is less likely to lose nutrients. Local produce and meat taste better too.
Regenerative Grazing Practices
Rotational grazing is a practice in which ranchers move livestock over grasslands or through forested areas with abundant perennial grasses, legumes, and weeds for the animals to eat. Herds never linger more than a few days in one spot, which mirrors how ancestral cow, bison, and sheep herds moved and ate. When ranchers practice highly-managed rotational grazing native grasslands are restored. Animals stimulate and fertilize the land increasing biodiversity, improving soil health, and drawing carbon down into the land and out of the atmosphere. Animals are stronger and healthier too, which means better food for us.
Look for meat that has been grass-fed and grass-finished. Many “grass-fed” labeled items have only been grass-fed for part of the animal’s life.
Buy meat certified by the Global Animal Partnership. Look for Step 4 and 5 certification to ensure the animal was pasture-raised and the ranch centers animal welfare.
Good News! You can find local, sustainable meat at the Davis Food Co-op
(11 miles from the Co-op)
SunFed Ranch beef from Woodland, CA is 100% pasture-raised and grass-fed using highly-managed rotational grazing. Healthier grass with deeper roots means protection from erosion and drought in our very own environment, plus healthier land is better equipped to sequester carbon. Stronger and more diverse grass varieties lead to happier and healthier cattle too. You can find a variety of beef cuts, often on sale, from SunFed in our Meat Department.
Rancho Llano Seco
(93 miles from the Co-op)
Rancho Llano Seco pork is raised confinement-free with continual access to open pastures and views of the California Buttes. They’re certified with the Global Animal Partnership, which means animal welfare is central to the Ranch’s practices. Their feed is grown on the ranch and their bedding is composted to feed its fields. You can find Rancho Llano Seco pork products in our Meat Department.
Diestel Family Ranch
(83 miles from the Co-op)
Diestel products including ground turkey and deli meats come to us from Diestel Family Ranch in Sonora, CA where regenerative agriculture practices like composting, responsible water usage, and animal welfare take center stage. They’ve earned the Global Animal Partnership Steps 4 and 5 certification. In addition to finding Diestel meats in our Meat Department, our Deli is now using Diestel Deli Meat in our sandwiches.
Tangelos from Loomis
We have two new tangelo varieties in from Pine Hill Orchard in Loomis, CA.
Lavender Gem Tangelos
These two-toned pink and orange fleshed tangelos have a very sweet and floral flavor.
Pearl tangelos are reliably sweet, with a tangy, grapefruit-like flavor and beautiful yellow flesh.
Lavender Gem Tequila Sunrise
- 1 cup ice
- 1 1/2 oz tequila
- 4 oz lavender gem tangelo juice
- 1/2 oz grenadine
- mandarin slices for garnish
Fill serving glass with ice, tequila and tangelo juice.
Add grenadine, garnish with mandarin, and serve.
Oro Blanco Grapefruits
These locally grown grapefruits have pale flesh, an aromatic, floral scent and a delicate flavor without any bitter aftertaste.
Rosemary Bruléed Oro Blanco Grapefruit
- 1 oro blanco grapefruit
- 1-2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
Preheat your oven’s broiler. Combine brown sugar, vanilla, and rosemary in a smal bowl. Cut grapefruit in half and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread sugar over grapefruit flesh. Broil for 3-4 minutes, until sugar is caramelized and bubbly.
Black radishes are known for having an earthy, spicy, and bitter flavor sharper than other radish varieties. The flesh is contrastingly bright white, firm, and crisp. When cooked, the flesh softens and flavor mellows, opening up subtly sweet peppery undertones.
Miso Roasted Black Radishes
- 2 medium-large black radishes
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, very finely minced
- 1 tbsp red miso paste
- ½ tbsp tamari
- ½ tbsp rice vinegar
- Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Slice radishes to 1/4-1/2 inch thick.
Combine olive oil, garlic, miso, tamari, rice vinegar, and generous pinches of salt and pepper in a bowl. Add radishes to the bowl and toss until evenly coated with miso mixture. Place radishes on baking sheet in a single layer. Pour any remaining sauce over radishes. Bake for 15 mins, flip, and bake another 15-20 mins until you have crisp edges and creamy middles.
Mizuna from Full Belly Farm in Guinda, CA
Mizuna is a mild tasting mustard green with peppery undertones and a crisp, firm texture.
Mizuna with Garlic and Bacon
- one bunch red mizuna, torn
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 slices of bacon, cooked until crispy and crumbled
- black sesame seeds, toasted
- olive oil
In a dry pan, toast black sesame seeds over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, or until fragrant.
Pour excess grease from pan. Saute mizuna and garlic together until greens begin to soften, about 2-3 minutes. Toss with bacon and transfer to serving dish. Top with toasted black sesame seeds and serve.
Beer, Wine & Spirits Winter Picks
by Chase Brunson,
Beer, Wine, and Cheese Specialist
It’s cold outside, hopefully raining, and I have the fireplace going or I am streaming the Fireplace Show on Netflix to create that same ambiance. I have a glass in my hand and a drink poured. It is more than likely one of my favorites from the list below, which can all be found at the Co-op.
Winter Beer/Cider Selections
Old Rasputin by North Coast Brewing
This has to be my go to Imperial stout this time of year. This large and in charge stout, that comes in at 9% ABV, has the perfect balance of toasted malts, residual sugar and alcohol that is begging to be drunk on almost any given winter night. The 4-pack is also an incredible value because normally you are paying much more for something of equal value. If you are feeling extra special and looking to treat yourself or someone else, they also produce a Barrel Aged version of the same stout in a 500 ml. bottle that is incredibly luscious and delicious.
Lassen Ciders (any of them)
Normally I am not a huge cider fan because they tend to be too sweet for me but Lassen takes the cake for local cider. They use dry-farmed apples and pick them at the peak of ripeness. What I also enjoy is they list on their bottles the rare and unheard-of varieties they use. Lassen fully ferments their ciders which allows their ciders to be dry but still have a fuller body because of their higher ABV and concentration of flavor compared to other dry ciders on the market. They naturally ferment their ciders giving them nuance and what wine people talk about “Terroir”. This word doesn’t translate directly into English but basically means the product is a reflection of where it comes from/where it is grown. This type of cider is nice during the cooler months and it goes great with the heartier foods we typically eat this time of year!
East Brothers Red IPA
This beer is definitely the perfect type of IPA for the cooler months! The Red component to it is the toast level of the malts. The malt body is sweet with strong notes of caramel and lightly roasted coffee. The hops are gently balanced with the malt providing brightness and bitterness that isn’t overpowering. The hops are more on the stone fruit side and aren’t too danky. If you are someone who just enjoys IPA year-round, I would say this is a beer worth giving a shot for the cooler winter months.
Red: GSM (Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre based blends)
These blends aren’t the most commonly found blends on the market but are great wines for people who love red blends or are looking for something a little different. GSMs are mostly, and originally, from a region in Southern France called the Rhone Valley. They are typically Grenache-based blends with the other two grapes at a lower proportion. There are technically 13 types of grapes permitted in these blends (red and white) and some wines utilize every single one. Chateau Beaucastel’s Chateauneuf-du-Pape is a famous wine that does just that every year. These wines range in alcohol from 14% to 15% and have a great flavor profile. Typically these flavors include red fruit (strawberries, cherries, pomegranates), baking spices, Herbs de Province (also known as Garrigue), tobacco, and sweet leather. They pair well with Winter foods because of their spice cabinet qualities and juicy richness. Soups, roasts, and baked goods are all great choices to pair this wine with.
Some of my favorites we have are:
Austin Hope: Troublemaker
Famille Perrin Chateauneuf-du-Pape
Chateau La Nerthe: Cuvee des Cadettes
Alsatian White Wines:
If you are someone who only drinks white wine all year long, fear not, I have the perfect type of wine for you too! Alsace is a region in North East France that primarily produces white wines! They are most known for Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer, Muscat and Riesling. These wines are rich in texture and flavor and can range in alcohol from 13% to 15%. Their Rieslings tend to be dry so don’t worry, no sweet Riesling here! They are great sippers with flavors of green apple, lime zest, spice and a hint of petrol (don’t worry, it’s a good thing!). Their Gewürztraminer is a little sweet with fruit notes of lychee and mango, fresh flowers, and spice (think allspice and cinnamon). Their Pinot Gris is richly textured with ripe flavors of pear, apple, meyer lemon with hints of spice. The Muscat is dry too, with beautiful floral, honey, and candied orange flavor, all without being sweet. These all pair well with foods this time of year like creamy soups and hearty meals like casseroles and stews.
It’s cold outside, hopefully raining, and I have the fireplace going or I am streaming the Fireplace Show on Netflix to create that same ambiance and have a glass in hand with a liquor poured neat. What’s in my glass? Whiskey. And these are a few of my favorites:
I am a sucker for Rye. The spiciness, the rich peppery notes, and the hint of char on the end. This is my go-to style of Whiskey. My favorite is Michter’s Single Barrel Rye. Dollar for dollar, you can’t beat it because each bottle is coming from a single barrel. There is no blending here so each bottle has its own story to tell.
An affordable favorite of mine is the Mars Shinshu Iwai 45. What makes this Whiskey special is what it is not. Japanese Whiskey really got started in the last century after some producers wanted to learn more about how to make the best whiskey and went to Scotland to learn how they do it. Most Japanese Whiskey today follows those traditions like using barley malt and sometimes incorporating peat into their Whiskey. Iwai 45 is not that though, it is more like Bourbon. It has a higher amount of corn in the mash bill and is 90 proof. The flavor profile is vanilla and butterscotch with hints of red berries and apples. It has a sweet and smooth finish, similar to Bourbon. So if you are a Bourbon person, give this one a shot, you won’t be disappointed.
I know it isn’t Whiskey like my other choices but give me a second to hear me out. A favorite of mine is Spirit Works’ Barrel Gin. This “Ginskey” is their signature Gin that is then barrel-aged in high toast New American Oak barrels for several months. It technically isn’t whiskey but it is pretty dang close and it offers that alternative for people out there looking for a new adventure. This beverage combines the flavors of juniper, citrus, and other botanicals used with the sweet caramel, cinnamon, and vanilla of the oak. This is a Gin for Whiskey people and the Whiskey for Gin people.
Written by Chase Brunson, Beer, Wine, and Cheese Specialist