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New Dinner Bar in A la Carte

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À la Carte is excited to announce our new Dinner Bar! Come in from 4-7pm and grab food from our hot bar at $8.79 per pound! Our menu will be the same as our lunch bar, which will continue to run every day from 11-2pm.

Monday: Greek

  • Lemon Pepper Chicken
  • Briami Vegetables
  • Falafel
  • Pita
  • Condiments: Tzatziki Lettuce, Tomatoes, Onion and Feta

Tuesday: Italian

  • 4-Layer Lasagna
  • Pesto Chicken
  • Vegan Pasta Bake with Lentil “meatballs”
  • Zucchini with Rosemary
  • Garlic Bread
  • Condiments: Parmesan Cheese

Wednesday: Mexican

  • Fajita Chicken
  • Marinated Seitan
  • Fajita Vegetables
  • Rice
  • Refried Beans
  • Tortillas
  • 5 Layer Dip
  • Chips
  • Condiments: Sour Cream, Lettuce, Salsa, Cheese

Thursday: Indian Day

  • Chicken Tikka Masala
  • Samosa Pot Pie
  • Indian Dahl
  • Indian Basmati Rice
  • Indian greens

Friday: Cajun

  • Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
  • Veggie Creole
  • Brown Rice
  • Bread pudding

Saturday: Comfort Food

  • Classic Macaroni & Cheese
  • Grilled Seitan
  • Roasted Local Chicken
  • Steamed Broccoli
  • Cornbread
  • Vegan Mashed Potatoes
  • Soulful Kale

Sunday: Breakfast

  • Biscuits with Sausage Gravy
  • Scrambled Eggs
  • Tofu Scramble
  • Roasted Potatoes w/ Rosemary
  • Condiments: Hot Sauce, Cheese, Sour Cream, Salsa, Jalapenos

*Items are based on availability.

We make all of our food from scratch with all natural ingredients! Now you can get a healthy, hot dinner to go! Come eat with us!

 

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Local Producer Visit: Uncle Jim’s Soap

Yesterday we got the opportunity to visit Jim and Ann Newman, makers of Uncle Jim’s Soap. Located out of Farmington, AR, they have been supplying the Co-op with their handmade, all natural soaps for over eight years! As their soap is a favorite of customers and staff alike, we thought it only made sense to go behind the scenes and see how it gets made.

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Jim and Ann are both retired teachers who worked in area schools for decades; Jim taught Middle School math and Ann worked with hearing impaired students. Jim said that he first started making soap 15 years ago as something to share with his friends and family. After family members started raving about the results, he decided that he was on to something. After lots of research and some trial and error, he began producing larger batches of consistently high-quality soap. For eight years, he has been selling his soaps to the Co-op.

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We arrived at Uncle Jim’s to find that the soap factory actually consists of the family garage. But in that small space, they have a surprisingly precise and sophisticated system for making their soaps. Here are the basic steps to producing Uncle Jim’s soaps:

  1. Premeasured amounts of coconut, palm and olive oil are heated in a large pot.
  2. Lye and water are also heated at the same time. The amount of lye is calculated precisely by the proportion and weight of oils.
  3. The lye and oils are then mixed using a hand emulsifier which creates the chemical process called saponification.  It is at this stage that additions like herbs, oatmeal or other ingredients are added. (They grow their own basil, cilantro, rosemary and other herbs used in their skeeter soap.)
  4. The soap mixture is then poured into a mold and allowed to cool.
  5. Next, the soap goes through a curing process of a few weeks – first as a full bar, then after being cut.

From start to finish, a finished bar of soap can take almost a full month to produce!

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Jim proudly calls the finished bars of soap “ugly.” And it is true, Uncle Jim’s bars of soap are not brightly colored nor do they smell heavily of perfume. That is because they do not add any coloring or scents to their soaps. They are made to be functional, not to look pretty. For example, they make the following kinds of soap for specific people’s needs:

Oatmeal Soap: Oily skin, sensitive skin (poison ivy, chicken pox, etc.).

Tee Tree Oil Soap: Dry skin, athletes’ foot, dandruff, head lice.

Sulfur Soap: Treatment for acne; a repellent for critters like fleas, ticks and chiggers.

Goat Milk Soap: A moisturizing soap used mostly by the ladies.

Old Fashioned Lye Soap: Its intended purpose was originally meant to be a stain removing soap for the laundry. But now we’re finding more and more folks are using it in the shower because they like the smooth yet thin lather rather than the thick suds they get with the other soaps.

Skeeter Soap: This is a soap made with catnip, basil, and rosemary, all touted to be substances that work to repel mosquitos. Disclaimer: This soap works like a miracle for some folks; for others it is ineffectual.

You can find Uncle Jim’s soaps on Aisle 5 of the Co-op.

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What’s Fresh : 7.22.14 : Local Tomato Season is In!

Can you guess by the title what we’re excited about this week in our Produce department? We are now able to phase out all tomatoes that weren’t grown within 100 miles of our store thanks to Sycamore Bend, Foundation Farm, Brannon Mountain Farm, Ozark Alternatives, Lightner Farm, SAS Greenhouse, and Dripping Springs. This means ALL our slicers, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, mini-roma tomatoes, and – for those of you who like frying – green slicing tomatoes are ALL local! Our farmers have grown a wide variety of tomatoes from classics like early girl, mortgage lifter, sungold, Juliette, and Arkansas travelers, to much-sought-after varieties like purple Cherokee, green zebra, chocolate stripe, and yellow pear, just to name a few.

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These fresh picked, organically grown, Arkansas tomatoes go great with the huge selection of all-local crops that we also have available right now including: basil, oriental & globe eggplant, green beans, zucchini, yellow squash, bulk yellow candy onions, shiitake mushrooms, red & green bell peppers, cayenne, jalapeno, banana, serrano, and Anaheim hot peppers, okra, green kale, tarragon, oregano, sage, cucumbers, fingerling potatoes, and red & green cabbage.

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And, in case you didn’t already know, you can sample some of the flavors of our local produce, and other locally produced goods, this Thursday, July 24th from 11am-5pm during our Local Fare Fair! In the Produce department, Madeline Scherwin from Sycamore Bend Farm will be here sampling out a stellar kale recipe (that even I have never tried) and Barry Moore from Moore Produce & Ozark Herbal Creations will be sampling out some of his Roasted Butternut Squash Pesto that earned an honorable mention in last year’s pesto contest. We hope you enjoy getting a chance to talk more with the people who grow our food and get ideas of how the farmers like to prepare the food they grow – something I always enjoy.

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Finally we have some great sale items, especially on some of our summer fruits, check it out:

Green Beans – $3.99/lb (owners save $1.00/ea)

Pluots – $1.99/lb (owners save $1.50/ea)

Blackberries – $3.99/ea (owners save $2.00/ea)

Strawberries – $4.99/ea (owners save $2.00/ea)

Red Grapes – $2.99/lb (owners save $1.00/lb)

Green Grapes - $2.99/lb (owners save $1.00/lb)

Blueberries, 6oz pkg – $3.99/ea (owners save $2.00/ea)

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Maca Smoothies for More Vibrant Days

On hot summer days, I tend to have more smoothies for breakfast. Though there are many ingredients I love, the maca I am adding seems to contribute to my sense of well being. This is probably because maca is an adaptogen and a hormone balancer.

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By adaptogen, I am referring to maca’s ability to reduce the negative impact stress has on our bodies. We might still experience the stress, but it is not as harmful on our overall health. A recent study showed that women who experienced more stress burned fewer calories after eating a high fat meal compared to the women with fewer stressors. The study showed that the higher stress levels correlated with higher insulin levels, which can contribute to belly fat. The study didn’t address adaptogens like maca, but in theory, these types of herbs might improve insulin levels and therefore help our metabolism.

The other popular benefit of maca is as a hormone balancer for both women and men. It is maybe most widely known as a libido enhancer. It isn’t going to necessarily help everyone since not all libido issues are related to hormones, but for those cases, it can be a great choice. Consuming maca might also help conditions like prostate issues, PMS, hot flashes, acne, and even some types of depression.

Because maca is traditionally used in fairly large quantities, it is a perfect item to add to a smoothie or other food. I usually put 1-2 teaspoon in each smoothie. When I added 3 teaspoons, I noticed a bit of a spicy radish-like taste that I didn’t like.

Here is my current smoothie recipe:

  • 1 scoop Sunwarrior Chocolate Warrior Blend or other protein powder
  • 1-2 tsp barley grass or other greens powder
  • 1-2 maca powder
  • 2 Tbs almond butter or other nut butter or nuts
  • 1 tsp cacoa powder
  • 1-2 Tbs ground flaxseeds and or chia seeds
  • ¼ tsp turmeric with a pinch of black pepper
  • 1 Tbs barlean’s Coconut oil
  • 1 to 1 ½ cups water

Blend in a blender until smooth with any of these other ingredients I might want that day:

You can also empty the contents of supplement capsules into the smoothie such as probiotics, amino acids, and herbal supplements. Basically any that doesn’t make the smoothie taste strange.

And I haven’t even gotten around to trying all of the new items in our Bulk Herb aisle. Here you will find bulk products to make your smoothies more nutritious and delicious like: bee pollen, beet powder, raw cacoa powder, cranberry powder, goji powder, lucuma, matcha green tea powder, and wheat grass powder.

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July in the Farm & Garden Department

Plant Support: This is the time of year when seed starts planted in the spring are
producing large amount of fruit and vegetables. Tomatoes, for instance, often need a little help growing vertically because the fruit becomes too heavy for the stalks or the outward growth takes up too much space. We currently have a big display of bamboo trellises and jute twine that will encourage vertical growth of your plants. The trellises are very sturdy and will be as susceptible to weathering as opposed to wooden alternatives.

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Bat Guano: This product is a great source of nitrogen, phosphorus, and calcium for your soil but we regret to inform our customers that we have temporarily stopped carrying it due to distributor issues. This is a popular product and we are in the process of looking for another source but in the mean time you can find a non-local bag of guano from our friends over at Nitron.

Mosquito Barrier: Mosquitoes are running rampant and after this week’s forecast of rain and ample amounts of humidity we are only going to see more of those pests. The best way to get rid of these pests in your back yard is to kill the existing mosquitoes and kill their eggs that are often around stagnant water. This product is a garlic based pesticide and is safe for humans and pets plus the 32oz bottle it comes in will cover large areas.

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Feed Orders: Our Feed store downstairs is open on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9am to 5pm. And recently we have been getting inquiries on larger orders of feed. The 10% case discount price on feed starts at 2000 pound orders and this is a great way to stock up for the fall. If you special order a ton of feed we can work with you by altering the grains and nutritional value that works best for your animals. We can also have the bulk feed from Thayer put in 50 pound bags which will reduce the amount of spoilage and will store much better.

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Always feel free to call or email us with any questions or concerns about our products. Call 479-521-7558 and ask for Mike Brillhart or email me at farm@onf.coop.

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Local Fare Fair

Every year, the Co-op celebrates local farmers and producers during Local Month in July. We love local farmers and producers because of what they mean to our community – these are families who are rooted in our community and are working to make it better. We support over 80 local producers here at the Co-op because we believe that it’s important to support local businesses whenever possible, as we are a local business as well! We’ve been in Fayetteville since 1971, and with the support of Fayetteville and the surrounding communities, we’ve been able to thrive. We want to help our local producers do the same! We define local as anything within a 100 mile radius of the Co-op.

This Local Month, we’re throwing a little celebration in honor of our local producers – the Local Fare Fair! This will be a tasting event in which you can come to the store and meet 8 of our local producers throughout the day and sample their products. Some of the vendors that will be set up at the Co-op are:

We’ll also have Handmade Moments, a local band, playing music at the store from 12-2pm. This music duo will make your day bright – we promise!

We hope to see you at the store for the Local Fare Fair, and while you’re here, check out the local products we carry throughout the store (noted with a local tag). Every time you buy a product that’s made or grown locally, you’re growing the local economy and supporting a local family.

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It’s fair to say that the Local Fare Fair is going to be fairly fun! We’ll see you there!

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The Co-op Goes to War Eagle Mill

Last week, the Co-op was invited to tour the War Eagle Mill, one of our longstanding local producers. Their high-quality flours, cereals and mixes are a favorite of our customers and staff (especially the Buckwheat Pancake Mix!), so we jumped at the chance to see firsthand how this historic mill operated.

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Nestled in the War Eagle Valley just south of Hobbs State Park, the War Eagle Mill can be reached via a short, scenic drive from Fayetteville. We arrived early Thursday morning and were met by Liz, who works sales and marketing at the mill. As we walked along the outside of the building, she told us some of War Eagle Mill’s long, and what some might call turbulent, history. Constructed by Sylvanus and Catherine Blackburn in 1834, the War Eagle Mill was built to accommodate the need of the Blackburns, and other local growers in the area, for a place to grind their grains into flour. It was destroyed in a flood in 1848, rebuilt the next year, burned down by the Confederate Army during the Civil War, rebuilt again in 1873 and then burned down for a second time in 1924. The building you see today, including the waterwheel system still in use, was constructed in 1974 using the same blueprints as the old mill. Surprisingly, the original Blackburn homestead survived the catastrophes brought upon the mill and still stands today.

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 Next, we ventured inside to tour through the three floors of the mill including the gift shop and third floor restaurant, the Bean Palace, famous for their beans and cornbread. The main draw of the building, though, is the actual mill itself. As explained by Wes, one of War Eagle’s talented millers (pictured below), the mill is run exclusively by the water power of the War Eagle Creek. As the large waterwheel rotates, it moves a large belt and pulley system that connects to the mills machinery. Grains are poured into a hopper at the top of the machine which feeds them between two vertically set millstones. One millstone remains stationary, while the other rotates via power from the waterwheel outside. It is this action that breaks down the grain to the desired consistency, from coarse grits to fine flours.

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 It is a beautifully simple system that has changed very little over the last two centuries. This simplicity in production might explain why War Eagle’s products are consistently of such high quality and flavor. They’ve had a lot of practice getting it right! We highly recommend their flours, cereals and mixes available at Ozark Natural Foods including:

Organic Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
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Organic Unbleached Bread Flour
Organic Buckwheat Flour
Organic Soy Flour
Organic Yellow Cornmeal
Organic Blue Cornmeal
Organic Yellow Corn Grits
Multi-Grain Pancake Mix
Buckwheat Pancake Mix
Biscuit Mix
Yellow Cornbread Mix
Creamy Wheat-O-Cereal
Organic 7-Grain Cereal
Organic Oat Bran
Organic Steel Cut Oats
Organic Thick Cut Oats
Super Natural Granola

The War Eagle Mill, including the gift shop and restaurant, is open to the public seven days a week, March 1st – December 31st (the mill is closed in January and open only limited hours in February). And make sure this fall to check out the War Eagle Mill Fall Craft Fair this year, from October 16th to October 19th. This annual event showcases hundreds of local craftspeople, artists and vendors from around the region, as well as being the perfect time to enjoy the fall season in the Ozarks.

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 Thank you to Liz and Wes for showing us around and to the War Eagle Mill for its continued excellence in providing high-quality, locally produced food to our community!

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Bulletproof Coffee Recipe

Last week, you may have read Dr. Laurell Matthew’s recipe for Bulletproof Turmeric (if not, check it out here and here). Her recipe was a take on Bulletproof Coffee, which has become very popular these days. I have been drinking Bulletproof Coffee for 4 months and I love it!

My favorite recipe for Bulletproof Coffee is 24 ounces of French-Pressed, Onyx Coffee Labs Ethiopian Misty Valley Coffee, 2 Tablespoons of Kerrygold Salted Butter, and 2 Tablespoons of Barlean’s Extra Virgin Coconut Oil blended together in a blender to emulsify.

This tasty coffee is perfect on those mornings when I am on the go and need sustained energy. The fat in the coffee keeps me full until lunch and also prevents that mid-morning crash!

And whether you try out Dr. Laurell’s Bulletproof Turmeric or my Bulletproof Coffee recipe, I recommend you use Barlean’s Extra Virgin Coconut Oil! It is even on sale for Co-op owners – $10.99 for a 16oz bottle (you save $5.oo)!

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A Trail Mix for Ginger Lovers!

Inspired by picnics, summer hikes, road trips and the wild ginger in me, I want to share with you a few thoughts about one of our new trail mixes: Wild Ginger Harvest! Wild Ginger Harvest, made by Sunridge Farms, is a sweet and savory trail mix with a nice zing of ginger. Full of chocolate chips, ginger, tamari almonds, cranberries, papaya, roasted cashews, raisins, pineapple, and apricots, Wild Ginger Harvest is a good mix of sweet and salty. Not only is it a great snack – it is packed with health benefits! Have cramps? Ginger can help! Can’t stop the tootin’? Ginger can help! Have a sore throat? Ginger can help! Have a question in bulk? That sweet ginger (me!) can help! So come on down to your local Co-op and try some of that new Ginger Harvest trail mix today.

-Chris, Bulk Foods

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Introducing Locally Made Kyya Chocolate Bars

It has come to my attention that, though I’ve already taken the mantle of “grocery blogger” for Ozark Natural Foods, I’ve yet to properly introduce myself. Allow me to make up for such a foolish mistake. Hello! I’m Blake Wilkins, your new friend-to-the-end for finding all sorts of fine foods. Let me let you in on a little about myself.

I’m a life-long resident of Fayetteville, AR and am a graduate of Fayetteville High School. I’ll spare you the eye sore of reading about my interests, hobbies, etcetera, etcetera, and instead inform you of the two things you really need to know about me to make this “relationship” work.

First of all, I dig writing. Wither or not one would consider myself any good at it is all up to you, but that’s besides the point. I dig it and I’m gonna keep diggin’ it until the day I die. With that being said, if you find that my blogs are either uninformative, too personal or simply badly written, please don’t hesitate to email me at blake.m.wilkins@gmail.com and I’ll do my darn-dist to find a solution for ya. Also, I’m relatively new with social media, so any complaints or comments you give to me will simply be seen as an opportunity to better my inter-web interactive skills.

The second thing you should know is that I love food. Sort of a match made in heaven considering I work at the best food establishment in town. I couldn’t have asked for a better job as a grocer, and being able to actually write for my employer is just icing on the cake. Speaking of cake…

I’ve got something of a sweet tooth. Sure, I’m all for the healthy stuff, but nothing gets my goat more than a good ol’ fashioned chocolate bar. Seriously. Even in middle school I was given the “Wonka Award,” for “having the most scrumdiddlyumtious attitude in class.” The name ‘Wonka’ and the word ‘scrumdiddlyumtious’ are derived from the novel “Charlie & the Chocolate Factory,” by Roald Dahl. In it, young Charlie Bucket receives a golden ticket that allows him to visit the infamous Wonka Factory, a chocolate factory owned and operated by an eccentric Willy Wonka and his team of dwarf slaves. It is there that Charlie discovers the definition of the word scrumdiddlyumtious, which is simply a fun way of saying that something either tastes delicious or is really marvelous. And man o’ man have I encountered something scrumdiddlyumtious!

Introducing the Kyya Chocolate bar. Really needs no introduction though. If there is any product that sells itself it’s chocolate. Need I really inform you that the Kyya Chocolate bar not only tastes scrumdiddlyumtious but that’s local too? Not really. Just mentioning that the item I’m selling is chocolate would be enough. But that wouldn’t make for the most informative or entertaining read now, would it?

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I’ve taken the liberty of researching various facts about chocolate and have some up with some really fascinating results. Like, I never knew that if you ate dark chocolate at least once a day that it would reduce the chances of heard disease by one-third. Guess I’ve got a strong heart! I also hadn’t any idea that chocolate actually has an antibacterial effect on the mouth and protect again tooth decay. Of all things that’d help with your teeth, I never would have guessed candy.

Not only does chocolate help with the heart and mouth, but also with one’s mood. The smell of it increases theta brain waves, which in turn triggers relaxation censors and ignites a feeling of ease and comfort. No wonder I’m at my most relaxed when behind a chocolate bar.

So let’s review, shall we? Kyya Chocolate not only tastes scrumdiddlyumtious, but it is beneficial for your health. And local! Need not us forget local. How about a taste test too? Purchase a Kyya Chocolate bar here at ONF, then head on down to your run-of-the-mill grocery store and pick up a conventional chocolate bar. Now nibble at both bars and experience the results. You’ll notice that the Kyya Chocolate is much richer and even sweeter. The conventional bar tastes almost rubbery by comparison. Defiantly not scrumdiddlyumtious.

Well there we have it. A super-sweet recommendation and a hopefully not-so overwhelming introduction. I hope you had as much fun reading it as I did writing it. Until next time, keep on eatin’ on!

-Blake, Grocery

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