Co-op Basics: Low Prices Every Day

As a cooperative grocer, we are driven by our mission statement and our ends policies, including the fact that everything we do is designed to meet our member-owners’ and customers’ needs. Undeniably, one of those needs is the need for access to affordable foods and household goods. In our case, we also emphasize that those items should be healthy, local, natural and/or organic whenever possible. Being able to offer those things to our customers at affordable prices is a goal we take seriously and achieve in part through our Co-op Basics.

Co-op Basics are high-quality grocery staples priced to be affordable for every budget, every day. In contrast to most supermarket chain private-label brands, our Basics are primarily organic, free of artificial ingredients, or are environmentally-friendly foods and household goods. The list of items changes quarterly, as we evaluate options based on availability, price and customer preferences. In many cases, we can offer every day low prices thanks to combined purchasing with our national association of food cooperatives. We are proud to include local products like Monument Farms milk and Cabot butter as well as national brands including Field Day, Organic Valley Garden of Eatin’, Earth’s Best, Clif Bar, Luna Bar, Applegate Farms, Florida’s Natural, Silk, Equal Exchange, Lundberg Family Farms, Seventh Generation, and Alaffia, and others.

Co-op Basics is just one way that our customers can save on everyday staple items while still buying products they can believe in. You can always find the current Basics flyer here. Below are a couple of recipes you can try, utilizing some Co-op Basics products.


Pepperoni Pizza Bake

Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients

1 pound penne pasta
3 ounces pepperoni, thinly sliced and cut into halves or quarters
1 jar (25.5 ounces) marinara or spaghetti sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup yellow onion, diced
1 cup green pepper, diced
1 1/2 cups button mushrooms, sliced
1 2.25-ounce can black olives, sliced
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Preparation

Preheat oven to 375ºF. Grease a 2-quart casserole dish. Cook the pasta according to package directions until just al dente (do not overcook). Drain and set aside.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and peppers and sauté for about 3 minutes, then add the sliced mushrooms and cook for another few minutes until the vegetables are tender. Remove from heat. In a large bowl, mix together the cooked vegetables, cooked pasta, pepperoni, marinara or spaghetti sauce, black olives, and half of the shredded cheese. Pour this mixture into the casserole dish and top with the remaining cheese. Bake in the oven for 15-18 minutes until heated through and the cheese browns on top.

Serving Suggestion

Serve this kid-friendly casserole with garlic toast, a green salad and simple steamed vegetables for a great weeknight meal. Substitute your family’s favorite pasta shapes for the penne; shells and rotini hold the sauce especially well. Use vegetarian pepperoni for a meatless version.


Blueberry Pie

Total time: 90 minutes
Servings: 8

Ingredients

Pie Crust

1 cup flour
6 T butter
2 1/2 T cold water

Pie filling

4 cups frozen blueberries (thawed and drained), when in season, use fresh!
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar

Preparation

Pie Crust

Cut very cold butter into tiny pieces and combine into flour. (I usually use my fingers to break down the butter into “pea sized” pieces). Add water a tablespoon at a time — mixing the ingredients with a fork or by hand until dough is combined but not sticky. (Note: pie crust dough doesn’t need a lot of kneading, so as soon as the ingredients are combined, dough is ready). Form the dough into two balls, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Lightly flour a surface for rolling out the dough. Roll out one dough ball into a very thin circle and place into a 9″ pie tin. Dough should overhang the edge of the pie tin by 1/2″; trim away any excess dough. Roll out the remaining dough ball and cut into 1/2-3/4″ lattice strips.

Filling

Combine berries in large bowl. Mix in flour and sugar and let stand for 20 minutes. Pour into pie tin. Lay on the lattice allowing strips to overhang the pie tin by 1/2″; trim away excess dough. Fold the bottom crust over the ends of the lattice and pinch to seal the dough together. Bake at 450°F for 10 minutes, reduce to 350°F and bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown.


Waldorf Salad with Yogurt and Honey

Total time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4-6

Ingredients

2 cups apple (1 large apple), cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup seedless grapes, halved
1 cup celery (2-3 ribs), cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 lemon, juice and zest (about 2-3 tablespoons juice)
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon honey
Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, zest, yogurt and honey. In a large salad bowl, gently toss the apples, grapes, celery, and walnuts with the dressing. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Substitute nonfat Greek yogurt for a lower-fat version if you like.

Serving Suggestion

Showcasing the fruits of autumn, a scoop of Waldorf salad is delicious with a brunch omelet or frittata, or served on a bed of spinach alongside spanakopita or stuffed grape leaves.

All recipes courtesy of: