May 2016 Newsletter



Catching You Up on Co-op News

Great news! In April, we added 47 new trial member!! We know we can grow even more. Help the Co-op thrive by encouraging friends to try our two-month trial membership. And let them know that the next New Member Orientation will be on Saturday, June 11 from 12:00-1:00 at the Co-op. This is the same day as our open house, so stop by, grab some lunch provided by Co-op members and fulfill your orientation requirement. Details are available on our website.

Spring has sprung and we’re getting a variety of tasty, fresh herbs in the store. Read on for creative ideas for how to use them (frozen mint cookies, anyone?) and tips on how to make them last. This month’s easy and savory recipe for braised cauliflower features ramps, another spring favorite in the store.

Our Win-Win-Win Program keeps getting better! Welcome the latest newcomer, local artisan Claudia Pearson, covet the kitchen items she offers and then WIN by getting 10 percent off on your purchases.

You might notice a theme in this issue. We’re ramping up our coverage of social justice issues -- from looking at where our yogurt comes from and advertising local food justice discussions to spotlighting social justice campaigns in our community. Tell us what you think and if you have suggestions for the newsletter!

In this month’s Co-op Q&A meet Lizzie Redman, greenmarket volunteer and director of a non-profit promoting nutrition and wellness in NYC schools.

Check out the Help Wanted section to find out about new ways you can fulfill your work shift credit requirement. The Co-op is seeking folks with a range of interests and skills, including designers, writers, developers, and people who can help take inventory and keep our finances in order.

What’s Up Next at the Co-op?

Our next monthly Greene Hill Food Co-op Board Meeting will be on Wednesday, May 25, from 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm at the Co-op, 18 Putnam Avenue — agenda link posted here. Our next quarterly General Meeting will be on Wednesday, June 22 (same time and place). Both meetings are open to ALL members. General Meetings tend to cover broad topics of interest. You can get a sense for the content of the meetings by reviewing their notes here.

Join us for our next Open House on Saturday, June 11, from 10 am to 6 pm! Invite your friends and neighbors to come and experience all the benefits of being a member. They can shop, enjoy food samples and meet other members of our community -- a great way to introduce newbies to the Co-op!

 Food for Thought on May 19 If you’ve got time on Thursday morning, check out this free event that includes a healthy breakfast and conversation about sustainable, local food economies. The New York City Food Policy Center at Hunter College is hosting Chef Michel Nischan for a discussion called Unlocking Affordability: Making Healthy Choices Cheaper Helps Local Food Commerce Thrive. Panelists include Nischan (a three-time James Beard Foundation Award winner and sustainable food movement leader), Barbara J. Turk, Director of Food Policy in the Mayor’s Office, and Gary Glowaczeski, a local farmer.

Space is limited so RSVP.

WHEN: Thursday, May 19, 8:45 am to 10:15 am (breakfast will be served at 8:30 am)

WHERE: Hunter College, The Silberman Building (Main Auditorium, 2nd Fl), 2180 Third Avenue at 119th Street

Major Discount on Brooklyn Wine Books Next time you're shopping, grab a Brooklyn Wine Book. It’s a two-for-one passport to 20 great Brooklyn wine-centric bars and restaurants, including Aita Trattoria, Bedford Hill, Bed-Vyne Brew and more. You can get one now for only $10 — half the original price! The book pays for itself in one use and Brokelyn has generously offered to donate 25 percent of proceeds to the Co-op. They are available at the store, but won’t last long!

Welcome Claudia Pearson to our WIN-WIN-WIN Program!claudia pearson teatowelLooking for some extra flair for your kitchen? Local artisan and illustrator Claudia Pearson may have exactly what you need. Inspired by her love of great food, Claudia has created a collection of tea towels, aprons, totes, chopping boards and more to meet all your kitchen needs!

Now, as a partner of our Win-Win-Win Program, all Greene Hill members can receive 10% off online purchases of Claudia’s beautiful products. Just put “GHFC” in the coupon box when you check out. So grab some totes for your next shopping spree at Greene Hill or an apron for your next BBQ -- all while supporting local farmers AND artists! Claudia’s goods make fantastic gifts, too.

If YOU run a local business and would like to participate in our Win-Win-Win program, please contact

Product Spotlight: Fresh Herbs from Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative

english thyme"What else can you do with thyme?" a shopper recently wondered while standing at the produce fridge. The Co-op has been stocking fresh, aromatic bunches of organic herbs this spring, including lemon balm, English thyme and peppermint from Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative. Besides adding a pinch of mint here and a sprig of fresh thyme there to your regular recipes, here are a few more ideas for using fresh herbs, including how to store them for darker and colder days.


  1. Make tea. Mint, of course, makes a delicious and healthy digestive tea. Did you know that mint, thyme and lemon balm are all also good for your immune system, respiratory health, nervous system and can help with pain relief? To make a tea of one or more herbs, use about one teaspoon of fresh leaves for one cup of tea. Pour boiling water over the herbs and let steep for 20 minutes. To maximize their medicinal benefit, cover the herbs while steeping so the essential oils don't evaporate.1 lb. asparagus
  2. Take a bath. Besides drinking it, a gallon of herbal tea makes a soothing and relaxing addition to a bath or foot soak.
  3. Dry and store. Put fresh herbs into a basket and toss them every day until they are dry, about 1 to 2 weeks. You can also tie them up with a rubber band (with stems in a bunch as thick as a pencil or less) and hang in a place with good air circulation. Once they are completely dry and crispy to the touch, store in a jar or airtight container. Then, use them for your next herb-filled recipe. One half teaspoon of dried herbs is equivalent to about one teaspoon of fresh.
  4. Mix it up. Sprinkle freshly chopped lemon balm or dried and crushed leaves over fruit salad, mix into cream cheese or put it on top of ice cream for a delicious lemon flavor!
  5. Freeze for later. Shake the herbs clean and put them directly into a freezer storage container, label and freeze. Frozen and dried herbs will keep about one year if properly stored. Here’s one suggestion: frozen mint is delicious in cookies. Crumble the leaves of one or two frozen sprigs onto cookie dough and mix well. Bake as usual and enjoy delightful, minty cookies!

The herbs we get at the Co-op can change week-to-week, so keep an eye out, grab them while you can and save some for later!

Product Spotlight: Chobani Yogurt’s New Way of Doing Business chobani yogurt

Chobani Yogurt may have already caught your eye because of the many fruity flavors we have on the Co-op’s fridge shelves. Now there's a new reason to notice them. Just last month, Chobani’s founder and CEO , Hamdi Ulukaya, announced that he’s giving his 2,000 employees an ownership stake in the privately held company -- about 10% of its value. In an unusual move for the food industry, Ulukaya said he wanted to continue to work together for a shared purpose and for employees to have a share in the company’s growth. As a member-owned Co-op, this is not just a yogurt but a business practice worth our attention.

The Co-op has a few other unique yogurts in the fridges. Some are locally-sourced like Seven Stars Organic Yogurt from Seven Stars Farm, a certified biodynamic dairy farm in Pennsylvania. Five Acre Farms, which makes Greek yogurt, gets all their milk from sources within 275 miles. We've also got some bigger brands like Fage, another popular Greek yogurt, and dairy-free So Delicious coconut milk yogurt.

Try something new the next time you shop! Remember, if something you're looking for isn’t on the shelf, ask someone on the floor if there's more in the back!

Braised Cauliflower with Ramps, Capers, Olives and Artichokescauliflower recipeRecipe by Molly Neuman

One of my favorite Saturday pastimes is watching cooking shows on PBS. Lidia Bastianich is one of my favorite chefs to watch. A few weeks ago I caught an episode where she braised an entire cauliflower and, though the accompanying red sauce was extremely simple, it had pancetta. I thought I’d give it a whirl using some savory, brined elements as the base and make it completely vegan. Though the whole cauliflower head version was visually stunning, it wasn’t practical for my saute pans so I ended up quartering it. Ramps are in season and they added a perfect element that brought depth to the flavors of the dish.

Serves 4-6.


  1. 1 head cauliflower (about 2 pounds)
  2. 3 T olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  3. ½ medium sized yellow onion, minced
  4. 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  5. 4 ramps, white parts sliced, green leaves thinly sliced and set aside
  6. 1 T capers, minced
  7. 2 T large green olives with pimentos, chopped
  8. 4 artichoke hearts
  9. 1 28 oz can or 1 box of Pomi chopped tomatoes
  10. 2 T sherry vinegar
  11. 2 t salt
  12. 2 t fresh cracked pepper

Trim the cauliflower of any brown bits and cut into quarters. In a deep skillet, heat olive oil, add onion, garlic and ramps and cook until translucent. Add capers, olives, artichoke hearts and warm through. Add chopped tomatoes, sherry vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Add cauliflower to the pan, cover and let simmer 15 minutes. Then turn the cauliflower over and cook for an additional 15 minutes or until completely tender. Remove from heat and place in serving dish, drizzle with olive oil and garnish with ramp leaves.

Total cost estimate is $5 or less than $2 a serving!

The Co-op Q&A with Lizzie RedmanLizzie Redman

I met Lizzie Redman a few Saturdays ago while we were both volunteering at the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket. I soon learned that she’s a passionate member of both the Park Slope Food Coop and Greene Hill Co-op, and I wanted to learn more.

Q: Where are you from and what neighborhood do you live in?

A: I grew up in Baton Rouge and I moved to NYC less than five years ago. I live on Lefferts Place which is a quiet street just three blocks long. I know my neighbors and I love the community feel!

Q: What brought you to Greene Hill Co-op? What role do you play here?

A: I joined the Park Slope Food Coop about two years ago. I resisted for a while because I was so active at the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket and I felt like I didn’t need to be a member there. I joined anyway, and pretty recently I started shopping at Greene Hill, where it’s easier to do my shifts, in addition to the Park Slope Food Coop. I am a floater right now and that’s because I’m on a flexible work schedule at Park Slope which allows me to do work shifts at Greene Hill. I am mostly a cashier here.

Q: As a member of both co-ops, what do you think sets Greene Hill apart?

A: Greene Hill feels like more of a community to me than Park Slope. PSFC is bigger, it runs like a machine, and has shift coverage to really make things go well, but when I go to Greene Hill I see the same faces, people jumping on the line to cashier when it’s not their shift, people running to the back room to help out when it’s not their shift. When I shop here, I feel good that I’m directly supporting something.

Q: I understand you work in the sustainable food system. Can you tell us more?

A: I’m the executive director of a nonprofit called the Bubble Foundation. We help fill the gap in nutrition and wellness education in NYC schools, particularly in underserved communities. We have cooking and nutrition programs, a gardening program, and a fitness program.

Q: What drew you to this kind of food justice work?

A: I started out as a passionate home cook. When I left Louisiana for college, I missed the red beans and gumbo that I grew up with and I started learning my family’s recipes. Around eight or 10 years ago, I started reading a lot more about nutrition and about the environmental and health issues behind food and when I moved to NY I started volunteering at the Grand Army Plaza Greenmarket. I started teaching cooking classes in schools with the Bubble Foundation and eventually started working there full time. Cooking and a love of sharing food with people has been a constant.

Q: How can Co-op members get more involved with food justice in NYC?

A: The greenmarkets have plenty of volunteer opportunities at the market: helping with the cooking demo, subbing in for farmers who need a break, and answering questions at the info booth. The Governor’s Island Compost Learning Center is a wonderful, small community center that needs volunteers. I also suggest the Bubble Foundation, where I work. We need weekly volunteers to help in our school programs. There are also special events during the summer that need volunteers.

Q: What is your favorite recipe from home?

A: Gumbo! It doesn’t really have a recipe. It has some basic rules, though: start with a roux and lots of green peppers, celery, and garlic. Lots of okra, too! Make a stock of veggie scraps and meat bones ahead of time, and add your protein. It takes eight hours but it’s worth it!

Social Justice in BrooklynThis new section of the newsletter is meant to draw attention to and support for social justice work that’s happening in our city, borough, and neighborhoods. It will spotlight campaigns, movements, events, organizations, and groups whose work is the elimination of racial, economic, health, food, and other injustices that affect our members and that make participation in our cooperative prohibitive.

The End AIDS NY 2020 Community Coalition, a collection of advocacy and service-providing organizations and individuals, are calling on Governor Cuomo to increase funding to combat HIV and AIDS in New York State’s FY 2016-17 budget. The Governor allocated $10 million for his End the Epidemic initiative, which aims to reduce the number of new HIV cases to below the number of AIDS-related deaths by 2020. The Coalition argues that ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic in NY requires much more.

Local organizations, including VOCAL-NY, Housing Works, Catholic Charities, Diaspora Community Services, and Brooklyn Community Pride Center are calling on Cuomo to fund the extension of HIV/AIDS Services Administration (HASA) housing and to cover the cost of providing rental assistance to all income-eligible New Yorkers with HIV. Stable housing is a strong predictor of health for all people, but especially those with chronic illnesses like HIV. Without housing, it’s much harder to store and take medicine or to refrigerate and cook the food needed to maintain good nutrition.

You can read more here about the Coalition’s requests and see a full list of its member organizations, several of which operate or are based in Brooklyn. You can advocate for more funding for HIV/AIDS-related services by contacting your state-level representatives (assemblyperson and senator) or by supporting individual members of the End AIDS NY 2020 Community Coalition.

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

IT Committee In Urgent Need of PHP/LAMP Stack Developer!

The IT Committee is looking for help with the Co-op’s public facing website ( as well as our internal systems, including our CRM and Shift Planning. If you have skills with PHP, Drupal, MySQL and CRMs (we use CiviCRM), then we could use your expertise. This work can be done remotely and is critical to ongoing success of our Co-op. For further information, email Chad Donnick

Seeking Designers & Writers for New Membership Campaign!

Help us design an outreach campaign to engage new members to join the Co-op community! We’re looking for writers, designers, community organizers, and people with experience in event planning and marketing. Working for the Marketing and Outreach Committees are a great way to get your shift credits from home, or have more flexible hours. Email to help out.

Seeking Finance Committee Members

If you have an interest in being involved in the day to day financial operations or finance strategy for the Co-op, please email

Finance Office Assistant Shifts Available

Interested in doing some office work at the store? Your role would focus on handling invoices and entering data into our accounting software. You'd get all the training and guidance you need, while working at a dedicated Finance desk and computer, and you'd be helping the Co-op produce financial statements on a regular basis. You can set your own hours! Please email if you'd like to join us.

Merchandising Committee Needs New Members

Interested in how food ends up on the Co-op shelves each week? Join us and make the magic happen. This position requires a 2½ hour monthly commitment (like any regular work shift), including attending one monthly meeting of 1½ hours. You’ll take inventory and order one key product from a small, local vendor like Mu Mu Muesli or Bridge tofu and seitan. If interested, email

Et cetera

Credits: Thyme and Chobani Yogurt photos by Shannon Sodano, cauliflower recipe photo by Molly Neuman, Claudia Pearson tea towel image courtesy of the artist, pic of Lizzie Redman provided by her.

The Greene Hill Food Co-op Newsletter is edited and published by (in alphabetical order) Carola Burroughs, Sonia Garbes Putzel, DK Holland, Alexandra (Aly) Miller, Amy Nazer, Molly Neuman, Shannon Sodano, Alejandro Varela, and Gitta Zomorodi. Contact us with any feedback, suggestions, or requests at

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