March 2015 Newsletter



In this Issue

As the days grow longer, so do our store hours! Check out the exciting news about our new store schedule--and please note the slight increase in the work shift requirement that helps make this wonderful change possible.

Think you might need to switch your shift? Looking for a new way to contribute to the Co-op? Check out the Help Wanted listings for the latest, fun opportunities and to find out what a floater is. Get to know Matt Talmage, Shift Leader Coordinator Extraordinaire.

Pining for more green in your life? Come to the next wellness workshop on April 8 to learn how to make delicious green smoothies. And save the date for Greene Hill’s second annual tree giveaway!

Invite your friends and neighbors to shop at the Co-op! The two-month free trial memberships continue, so spread the word. And don’t forget that Park Slope members can shop with us, too!

Everyone is busy these days and it can feel tough to find enough time to cook a healthy meal. Learn about our new frozen food offerings and get tips from Molly Neuman how to make the most of your veggies.

Next General Meeting: Wednesday, March 25, 7:30-9:30 pm

Join us for our monthly general meeting at the store, 18 Putnam Avenue. Have a burning question about the Co-op? A great suggestion? This is a perfect time to bring your ideas and concerns.

Behind on your hours? Members can receive work credit for attending up to three general meetings per year. And as a plus, you can shop after the meeting, even though the Co-op closes at 9 pm on Wednesdays! For more details, check out the meeting agenda. (Please note: Agenda may not yet be posted the the time the Newsletter comes out; if not, check back later.)

Greene Hill Co-Op News

Coming Soon! Store Hours are Expanding!

It’s happening! You asked and we heard. Beginning on Monday, March 30, the Co-op will be open longer and our hours will be consistent, and so easier to remember!

The new schedule starting March 30 will be:

  • Mondays & Wednesdays: 3 pm - 9 pm
  • Saturdays & Sundays: 10 am - 6 pm

To enable us to simplify the store hours and make it more convenient to shop, we are also expanding our work shift requirement from two hours to 2.5 hours starting March 30. (For those who are also Park Slope Food Coop members, this brings you a half hour closer to your monthly FTOP requirement!) Store workers, please check Shiftplanning and confirm that your new shift time works for you. If not, please email Membership.

Also, due to the expanded Sunday hours, we have lots of new available shifts on Sundays. We are hoping the expanded Sunday hours work better for many of you, not just for shopping but working as well. So if you can, please sign up for a Sunday shift on ShiftPlanning.

We’re so very grateful for your continued commitment to growing our store and community! Let’s make 2015 a great year!

New Shift Swapping and Make-up Procedures

We know it’s challenging to find coverage for your shift, so we’ve been working hard to streamline the process. So, if you’re looking for coverage, please read the new shift swapping and make-up procedures on our website. Copies of this will also be available in the store.

green smoothieWellness Workshop: Green Smoothie Class and Demo

Join Jill Hoffman as she outlines the benefits of greens and answers your most burning questions about green smoothies. She will also demonstrate how to make a delicious spring green smoothie that even the kids will love!

When: Wednesday, April 8, at 7 pm

Where: Greene Hill Food Co-op, 18 Putnam Avenue

Jill Hoffman is a Certified Holistic Health and Lifestyle Coach. She teaches busy women how to get off sugar so that they can feel less stressed, have more energy, and be more present and productive in their lives.

take home a free treeMark Your Calendar for April 11: Second Annual Tree Giveaway

Take home a free tree! The Greene Hill Food Co-op is partnering with the New York Restoration Project and their MillionTreesNYC Initiative to give away one hundred trees. You’ll be able to register for your tree two weeks in advance. Click here for more information and stay tuned.

Trial Memberships Continue!

For a limited time only! Tell your friends and neighbors to give the Greene Hill Co-op a try. They’ll get two months of unlimited shopping at the Co-op without working a single shift. Help get the word out so more people discover what makes the Co-op so great! Stop by the store to register and find out more.

Park Slope Co-op Members Welcome

Don’t forget to tell your friends. As a thank you for all of PSFC’s support over the years, Greene Hill Food Co-op has opened its doors to Park Slope Food Coop members for a limited time (yes, PSFC spells “co-op” differently!). No work commitment, no membership needed!

It’s Your Newsletter!

Is there something you wish we’d write about? Let us know! We know our members are full of good ideas and we want your contributions. Contact us with your suggestions for articles about food, food justice, and life at the Co-op. Contact our Food and Food Justice Editor Roxanne Earley or our Human Interest Editor Aly Miller.

Product Spotlight

golden cherry blintzesYou may have noticed that our freezer case has been really full recently. Even with our limited space, we’re trying to expand our offerings in frozen food to give members more options for prepared foods. You can make a fabulous breakfast out of our frozen goods. One favorite among members is Golden Blintzes which we carry in both cheese and cherry varieties. You can cook them directly out of the freezer: just put them in a pan with a little bit of butter or oil on medium heat and cook, turning occasionally, for about 15 minutes. Add some Morningside Farms vegetarian bacon and sausage and some Van’s frozen waffles, and you’ve got a tasty and convenient brunch for you and your family!

Looking for a quick, delicious, and good-for-you dinner? Look no further than the Co-op’s freezer case. Some new items include Bombay Kitchen’s vegetable samosas, Deep Food’s palak paneer (Indian spinach and cheese), and our expanded line of Amy’s burritos and enchiladas.



This week: Vegetable Prep Tips by Molly Neuman

The Co-op has done a great job of keeping us stocked with high quality produce throughout this brutal winter. Many of us are busy and may even have a hard time keeping up with it! Here are a few ideas for ways to prep veggies so that they’re easier to use throughout the week between shopping trips. Most vegetables benefit from two cooking steps to enhance flavor and color. And a little extra work in advance can save time on your daily meal preparation.

Every Sunday I try to prep and store my vegetables so they are ready to go into my favorite recipes. After blanching, broccoli, kale, snow beans and string beans are ready to stir fry or roast. They keep their color and have a more tender texture than if you cook them raw. Softer, water-soluble vegetables like asparagus, spinach, and chard don't need blanching, but washing, trimming, and preparing in advance makes them easier to use and ready to add to sautées and soups. Here are a few tips on how to make the most of your vegetables!

  1. Heat a big pot of salted water to boiling. Set aside a large bowl of ice water and a large colander for draining the vegetables.
  2. Wash, trim and prep your vegetables for blanching and shocking. Try to cut them into uniform pieces so that they will cook evenly.
    • Kale - pull leaves from stems, chop into bite-sized pieces.
    • Broccoli - trim broccoli flowers from stems and cut into bite-sized pieces.
    • Brussels sprouts - trim stems and halve or quarter Brussels sprouts to have uniform size.
    • Green beans or snow peas - trim ends and remove any strings.
    • Chard - pull leaves from stems, chop stems into small pieces and chop leaves into bite-sized pieces. Chard is tender and doesn't need blanching/shocking. The stems are perfect to sauté along with aromatics (onion, garlic, ginger) before you add the leaves.
  3. Add the vegetables to the pot. Blanch each type of vegetable separately for 30 to 60 seconds, long enough for the color to set and the salted water to flavor the vegetables.
  4. Transfer vegetables with a slotted spoon or spider to the bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process.
  5. Once the vegetables have cooled, drain them thoroughly in a large colander.
  6. Store in containers or zip-lock bags in the fridge.
The Co-op Q&A with Matthew Talmage

Matthew Talmage hugging a cat

This month we got the chance to meet longtime Co-op member and current Shift Leader Coordinator, Matthew Talmage. You might find him playing a show, riding his bike around the neighborhood, or perusing the bulk aisle.

Q: Where are you originally from and where do you live in Brooklyn? What do you like about your neighborhood?

A: I'm originally from Chicago, but came to NYC via California. After over a decade in Santa Barbara, a beautifully-appointed beach town, the move to NYC was a welcome return to the sort of urban, well-developed-mass transit, international cuisine, fringe live music, late night/early morning clubs, environment that I missed. Specifically, I moved to NYC for more opportunities/inspiration as a musician--and that's exactly what I got!

Compared to the other boroughs, Brooklyn offered the right combination of elements I prioritized: an apartment with some space (which I need as a percussionist with many drums), proximity to Manhattan for gigging and just enough of a tempered pace that allows me to recharge.

I live on the border between Fort Greene and Clinton Hill where I enjoy the sense of community from long-term residents--that also welcome newcomers into the mix; I actually know my neighbors and other building tenants.

Q: How did you hear about the Greene Hill Food Co-op?

A: I heard about the Greene Hill Food Co-op when it was more of an idea than a physical reality and was excited about the prospect of a co-op in our neighborhood. Initially, the convenience of a food co-op closer to home than the Park Slope Food Coop (where I was a member) was the main motivating factor, but then as I got more involved I saw that it was a group effort that I could be a part of that gives back to my neighborhood--where I chose to live. My sense of commitment to the Food Co-op was set then because I realized that without the requisite time, effort, coordination, negotiation and community building from me, we'd never even get to the point of having doors open and offering good food choices.

Q: How are you involved at the Co-op?

A: My involvement has waxed and waned as my other commitments in life have changed, but I've always liked the hustle-bustle of the people in the store and the immediacy of accepting the delivered products and getting them out on the shelves.

Currently, I've stepped into a new position that I felt was needed and was encouraged by others that saw that same need. I'm the Shift Leader Coordinator. My duties are changing as I develop the position around the needs of the store--I'm applying my skills as an improvisor! Ultimately, I'm trying to work with the core of shift leaders to make the store run smoother.

Q: What do you do in everyday life?

A: My day job is composing/sound designing. I make all the sounds for slot machines. If you've ever played a slot machine at a casino or played one online, you probably know my work : ). At night, I'm often performing. I've been having a great time for the past 3 years playing in a band called Not Waving But Drowning. That's what I do for fun too. I also like bike riding--rural as well as urban--and I've recently gotten back into skiing. What a blast!

Q: What are some of your favorite things to buy at the Co-op?

A: When I shop at the Co-op, I mostly go for the produce and maybe a little bulk. Okay, I'll also walk away with a decadent chocolate bar. I CAN'T RESIST.

Q: Where would you like to see the Co-op in five years?

A: In 5 years I'd like to see the Greene Hill Food Co-op be an integral part of the community. A place that people mention when they speak about the Fort Greene/Clinton Hill area; that they're synonymous. "Oh, you live here now? Great! When is your co-op shift?"

Help WantedAll members work a 2.5-hour shift every 4 weeks. It's part of being a member/owner. Here are some opportunities to earn work credit.

Become a Shift Leader Today!

Considering becoming a shift leader? Take the plunge! We’re looking for good people, especially for leading shifts on the weekends. There are no qualifications necessary. We'll get you formally trained so you have the tools to lead with confidence. You'll be invited to our monthly meeting where you can meet the other leaders and contribute your ideas and opinions. You can make a difference in how our store runs! Concerns or questions? Contact Matthew Talmage, Shift Leader Coordinator, at

The next shift leader meeting is on Sunday, March 29, at 2 pm at The Co-op.

Interim Board Members Wanted

The Board of Directors has open seats, and any member with a minimum one-year membership at the Co-op is qualified to join. You can help shape the direction of our store. The Board of Directors is involved in all aspects of running the Co-op from maintenance and store management to strategic planning. Individuals must commit to regular attendance at both the monthly general meetings and the monthly Agenda Committee meetings.

If you’re interested or have questions, please contact Allison at

Floater’s List: The Best-kept Secret that’s Not a Secret

Need to do a make-up shift? Have an inconsistent schedule and need flexibility with your work shifts? Like to work on a variety of projects? Then the the floater’s list is for you! Every week we send an email listing open store shifts and special projects to the “floater’s list.” It’s a great way to get caught up if you’ve fallen behind on your shifts and/or if you can’t commit to a regular work shift schedule. To get on the floater's email list, send a request to Lauryl at

And remember: if you’re behind on your hours, you only need to work two shifts to get caught up, no matter how many shifts you’ve missed!

Job listings in alphabetic order:

Seeking Finance Team Coordinator

The number of members doing Co-op finance work has doubled over the past year which means we need a member to help us keep organized, coordinate the teams doing different financial tasks, schedule meetings, keep track of progress on projects, and respond to/redirect Finance e-mail messages. If you'd like to learn more about the financial side of Greene Hill, and relish the challenge of coordinating the work of a couple dozen members, then this job's for you!! No prior financial experience is needed. And except for Finance meetings, you can do all your work from home. Please e-mail if you're interested.

Seeking IT Committee Members

The IT Committee is looking for new members for both in- and out-of-store tasks. We are looking for IT individuals who are willing to work in the store to troubleshoot new and existing challenges with the POS machines and network. Individuals who have experience with LAMP (Linux/Apache/MySql/PHP) applications, Drupal, CiviCRM, Wordpress, Linux server administration, or network setup and administration would also be an asset to the Committee. If you are interested or have questions please send them to

Membership Desk Members Needed

Do you like helping fellow members with questions? Something tells me you do! Well, then you're perfect for the Membership Committee and Membership Desk! The Membership Committee is setting up camp at the Membership Desk once again starting Saturday, April 4, and we need people! Membership Desk hours will be on a Saturday and in store.

If you're a Check-In Desk person and want to try something different or a member who simply wants to join the Membership Committee, please email

Merchandise Committee Looking for New Members

Would you like more say in what the Co-op stocks and sells? The Merchandise committee is looking for new members to work on the exciting task of selecting and ordering everything that goes on the Co-op's shelves. Experience in grocery or restaurant work is a plus, but not at all necessary. If you're interested, contact

Newsletter Seeks Writers

Want a great regular way to fulfill your hours from home each month? This newsletter is looking for writers who can help share the Co-op’s latest news with our members and friends. You can come up with story or interview ideas and co-ordinate or write them. Write us at

Help Us Reach Out!

The Outreach Committee is dedicated to spreading the word about the Co-op and attracting new members. We need members to work events, hand out flyers, and manage small projects. Join us at our next meeting on Thursday, March 19, at 7 pm at the store or email to get started!

Et cetera

Photo credits: Molly Neuman (vegetables), (blintzes)

The Greene Hill Food Co-op Newsletter is edited and published by (in alphabetical order) Carola Burroughs, Roxanne Earley, Sonia Garbesputzel, Alexandra Miller, Amy Nazer, and Gitta Zomorodi. Contact us with any feedback, suggestions, or requests at

Join or follow the Greene Hill Food Co-op!

Interested in joining the Greene Hill Food Co-op? Check out our website to learn about membership, like us on Facebook, or stop by our store at 18 Putnam Ave. (off Grand Ave.) with any questions!