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Blog & Latest News2017-01-19T21:01:10-06:00
2305, 2024

Great Grilling

May 23rd, 2024|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , |0 Comments

May 2024 Produce Parable

Great Grilling

By Adam Calder, Produce Manager

The smell of hickory smoke; the sound of sizzling steaks; the taste of those dark strips of caramelized sugar seared onto fresh produce after it touches a hot grill; these things combined mean it is the season for back yard grilling!

Our grocery department has got some grilling essentials to get you started. Instead of lighter fluid to start your charcoal grill, you might try some If You Care brand Firestarters. These little cubes of compressed sawdust and vegetable oil are perfect for starting a fire in a grill or a campfire. They are made of 100% biomass (no petro-chemicals), are completely non-toxic , not oily or greasy to the touch and do not produce foul smelling fumes. Just light one on fire, drop it in your grill and pile some charcoal on top and in a few minutes your grill will roar to life.

You may also want to pick up a bag of Woodstock brand 100% Hardwood charcoal. They do not add any filler, lighter fluid or non-hardwoods to the charcoal the result is a cleaner burning fuel that burns hotter than traditional briquettes. If you have never tasted food grilled over hardwood, you will be surprised by the delightfully complex flavors and aromas added to your food.

Once you’ve got your fire good and hot, it’s time to put some food to that fire! No matter what foods you eat or do not eat, Wheatsfield has got you covered. If you enjoy eating meat, then you have got to try some of our house made bratwursts. These bratwursts are freshly made and perfectly seasoned in our meat department, and they go great with some sauerkraut. If you want a really fantastic bratwurst, try grilling a pack of our locally raised and produced Grass Run Farm peppered bacon right next to those bratwursts. Grilled bacon is amazing, so crispy and smoky, if you’ve never tried you really should!

For all you vegetarians and vegans, we have some Beyond brand patties and sausages. These are every bit as tasty and satisfying as their meat-based counterparts, but without any cholesterol or harm to animals. We also have some vegan Field Roast brand grain meat sausage. These sausages taste great, and were made for summer grilling! As they are mainly made of wheat gluten, they tend to stick to a hot grill, so wrap them in aluminum foil before you grill them.

While you’ve got your aluminum out, you may as well make a few packets of produce to throw on the grill. Take a sheet of foil (an 8 inch by 11 inch, about the size of a piece of paper) and in the center of the foil place one or two cups of sliced potatoes, carrots, peppers, onions, zucchini or any other vegetable you want (potatoes and carrots may need to be par-boiled before you grill them to ensure they are cooked all the way through before the rest of the veggies start to burn.) Sprinkle on a little olive oil, some salt and pepper and some chopped fresh herbs, fold up the foil and roll up the edges to make a little packet, and then grill for about 15minutes. Grilling vegetables tends to take longer than most meat, so start the veggies before you start cooking any meat products.

Now it’s time for dessert, and the grill can absolutely help you out here too. If you take a bite of a peach, nectarine or pineapple as they are, they are quite good. Taste that fruit after it has been on a hot grill for a couple of minutes, and get ready for an explosion of great textures and tastes. A grilled

peach takes on a light crispy edge on the outside and on the inside, well, it’s just like having your own smoky little piece of pie! When you grill fruit, the juices inside get all hot and bothered and just can’t wait to come bursting out when you take a bite. If you’ve never had hot grilled peach juice running down your chin, then you have been missing out!

With so many great products to get your grill going, and so much great food to put on top of that grill, what are you waiting for? Summer is fleeting, and such is life, so don’t waste the chance to enrich your life with something as sensual, simple and rewarding as a dinner cooked on the grill. Here are a couple of fun recipes to get you started.

Pesto Grill Sauce

Makes 1 cup, enough for 1 pound sliced vegetables

This marinade is basically a pesto that is thinned out enough to spread onto vegetables with a brush. It is great on summer veggies such as tomatoes, summer squash, eggplant, asparagus, onions, broccoli and even ears of corn!

  • ¼ cup basil leaves
  • ¼ cup parsley leaves
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 2 T. fresh sage (or ¾ tsp. dried sage)
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 4 T. lemon juice

Place the first 5 ingredients into a food processor and pulse for 30 seconds to a minute until the mixture is coarsely chopped. With the motor running, slowly pour in the olive oil and then the lemon juice, taking another 30 seconds or so to incorporate these liquids. This sauce keeps in refrigerated for 4 days and frozen for 6 months.

Red Eye Glaze

Makes 1 ½ cup, enough for a 3 lb. ham or 1 ½ lbs. of steaks

This is a traditional sauce/marinade used in the southern states. You need to use high quality coffee to make this sauce really stand out.

  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup prepared mustard
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup strong coffee
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan and simmer over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Raise heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. This sauce keeps for one week in the refrigerator.

2305, 2024

Co-op Made Bratwursts for Summer Grilling

May 23rd, 2024|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

Local Bratwursts on Grill

With Memorial Day around the corner, it’s time to start planning the first delicious outdoor menu of the spring! Brats are a perfect item to grill because they come in many flavors and they always satisfy a hungry crowd.

Technically bratwurst is a fresh, link sausage made with pork and sometimes veal.  Wheatsfield’s artisanal sausages feature locally produced Beeler’s Pure Pork. In addition, Andy Voyek, Wheatsfield Co-op’s Meat Manager, hand prepares each batch to his own expert specifications using organic herbs and spices from locally owned Frontier Co-op in Norway, IA.

Wheatsfield is excited to offer a tasty variety of pork brats for your get-togethers and festive cook-outs. We hope you enjoy the artisanal flavors Andy has to offer!

  • Bratwurst – The OG of all artisan brats! Our traditional recipe.
  • Bubbie’s Brat – Our traditional brat recipe with Bubbie’s Sauerkraut. Boil in beer and onions, perfect in a bun.
  • Blueberry Brat – These might sound unusual but don’t knock it ‘til you try it! Andy says the sweet fruit compliments pork perfectly. Consider serving these brats with fingerling potatoes tossed in balsamic vinegar, chopped parsley and salt and pepper. Great in a bun or for breakfast.
  • Maple Brat – Makes for a great French Toast Casserole, perfect in a bun or for breakfast!
  • Gyro Brat – Serve in a warm pita topped with yogurt cucumber sauce (Tzatziki) and chopped tomatoes to mimic the Greek classic gyro. A side pilaf salad or baked potato will please any gathering.
  • Mushroom Herb Brat – Great in a toasted bun with garlic butter, or excellent in any pasta dish. Boil for 5-7 minutes, finish on a grill or pan fry.

How to Cook

Since brats aren’t precooked like hotdogs and some sausages, Andy suggested boiling them in water (or beer) for 5-7 minutes before putting them on the grill.  The goal of grilling is to create distinctive caramelized grill marks, crisping the casing and holding all the delicious spices and juices inside. A dried out brat is the wurst! Without boiling the brats first, cooks run the risk of too much charring on the outside of the brat which dries out the brat and which diminishes the flavors inside. It is completely worth the extra step, your taste buds with thank you!

1305, 2024

Vegan Summer Salads

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog, Classes|0 Comments

Vegan Summer Salads

Join a local dietitian for a vegan-friendly class focused on using in-season, fresh produce in unique ways! We’ll make 3 salads you’ve likely never had before and learn the magic of constructing your own original salads. We will be making a roasted summer squash salad, Korean cucumber salad, and Japanese carrot-ginger salad.

Instructor
Kimberly Baishnab is a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified lactation specialist who has a passion for all things cultural foods and culinary nutrition. Kimberly provides nutrition counseling and local workshops to promote a positive relationship with food for everyone in your family. Join Kimberly in the kitchen and the classroom to learn more about using food to nourish your body and soul, ensuring a happy, healthy life for your whole family.

Date and Time
Wednesday, June 26, 5:30-7pm

Special
Cooking
Vegan
Seasonal

1305, 2024

Spice Up Your Life: Kimchi Making Class

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog, Classes|0 Comments

Spice Up Your Life: Kimchi Making Class

As a terrific food for anyone looking to improve gut health, kimchi has become increasingly popular in the western world. It is one of the oldest fermented foods in the world and arguably one of the tastiest! Join a local dietitian in the kitchen to learn to create this Korean side dish, and also learn about the enormous nutritional benefits it can provide you! Everyone takes home a fresh jar of kimchi to let ferment at home.

Instructor
Kimberly Baishnab is a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified lactation specialist who has a passion for all things cultural foods and culinary nutrition. Kimberly provides nutrition counseling and local workshops to promote a positive relationship with food for everyone in your family. Join Kimberly in the kitchen and the classroom to learn more about using food to nourish your body and soul, ensuring a happy, healthy life for your whole family.

Date and Time
Tuesday, June 18, 5:30-7pm

Special
Fermentation
Cooking

1305, 2024

Balancing Act: Optimizing Calcium & Magnesium Levels for Stress

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog, Classes|0 Comments

Balancing Act: Optimizing Calcium & Magnesium Levels for Stress

Did you know that every body comes equipped with its very own stress management system? It’s true! However, all too often, we find ourselves leaving the stress ‘lights’ on all day, which inevitably drains our system. Join nutrition therapist, Theresa Munkvold, for an engaging session where we’ll explore how stress impacts our bodies and delve into the crucial roles of calcium and magnesium in stress management. Together, we’ll embark on a journey to assess our individual stress systems and discover effective strategies to manage and optimize them. Get ready for an enlightening and enjoyable experience!

Instructor
Theresa Munkvold is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist, promoting wellness and disease prevention through an integrative approach that is both practical and sustainable for your optimal health. Inspiring and motivating individuals through classes and private nutrition counseling. Theresa loves anything related to nutrition, skating, skiing, walking, singing and cycling.

Date and Time
Tuesday, June 11, 6-7pm

Special
Educational
Free

1305, 2024

May 2024 Board Meeting Highlights

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Here are highlights from the April 2024 Wheatsfield Board of Directors meeting:

  • The Board heard updates on outsourced IT, payroll and financials.
  • Planning for the 50th Anniversary Block Party continues. This month’s updates include how event activities will be contained to the parking lot at the front of the store, allowing Northwestern Avenue to remain open during the block party.
  • Conversation began about adopting an additional, eighth cooperative principle that focuses on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The Board is using the broader National Co+op Grocers’ and other co-ops’ recently adopted DEI principles as reference points.
  • The General Manager reported that year-to-date sales for the current fiscal year are up, at 1.02% above budgeted sales and 3.78% over last year’s sales.
1305, 2024

Introduction to Sous Vide Cooking at Home

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog, Classes|0 Comments

Introduction to Sous Vide Cooking at Home

Join father & daughter team, Gina and Jim, as they demonstrate the simplicity and flexibility of sous vide cooking. Literally translating to “under a vacuum,” sous vide uses a temperature-controlled circulator to slowly and perfectly cook vacuum-sealed ingredients, all while retaining their nutrients. Gina and James will prepare chicken street tacos, pork tenderloin, mashed potatoes, and carrot soup for you to try. Learn about this minimalist and relatively inexpensive technique to prepare perfectly-cooked sous vide meals in your own home!

Instructors
Gina Barrientos recently graduated from Iowa State University with her degree in Dietetics. She currently lives in the Des Moines area with her husband, two cats, and dog. “I have a passion for understanding the science behind food and a love for finding out how and why food nourishes our bodies. I have learned how to better myself in the art of cooking and baking with a lot of help from my dad”.

Jim Dymit is a home cook who has travelled extensively as a Field Engineer for 40 years. “I really like to try different cuisines and unusual food while I’m on the road. When I get home from a trip, the first thing I do is gather the ingredients I need to attempt to reproduce the dish that I had. By doing this for many years now, I’ve learned some skills and techniques that make the process of cooking fun and exciting. I want to share that passion for making amazing food with you.”

Date and Time
Thursday, June 6, 5:30-7pm

Special
Cooking
Technique
Tasting

1305, 2024

Herb Walk at Brookside Park

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog, Classes|0 Comments

Herb Walk at Brookside Park

Interested in deepening your knowledge of the medicinal plants growing in our backyard? Take a walk through Brookside Park alongside herbalist and retired RN, Nancy Beatty. Nancy will point out and educate attendees on the medicinal flora we encounter along the way.

Instructor
Nancy Beatty, Herbalist, originally from northwest Iowa, has an educational background that includes an AA in Horticulture and ADN in Nursing. In 2003 Nancy attended Michael Moore’s Southwest School of Botanical Medicine in Bisbee, AZ receiving a Clinical Herbalist certificate. Nancy worked as a RN for over 30 years and has been a self-avowed “plant freak” for even longer. She started a small business, Iowa Roots Herbal Apothecary, in northwest Iowa before moving to Ames about 15 years ago. Nancy is retired from her work as a RN at ISU’s Student Health Center. She continues to study medicinal plants and make her own tinctures, oils and salves for self, and family & friends.

Date and Time
Wednesday, June 5, 5:30-7pm

Special
Outdoors
Offsite
Education
Free

1305, 2024

2024 Summer Tiny Deck Concerts

May 13th, 2024|Categories: Blog|0 Comments

Back for the 2024 Season! Join us for FREE Tiny Deck Concerts featuring live local music.

Fridays nights, July 5 – August 30, 5:30-7pm.
Meet us on the east deck and grab dinner, drinks and friends! Everyone is welcome!

Please bring a blanket or lawn chair too, the deck seating fills up quick.

Fri., July 5 | Miann

Michaela Thompson, under the artist title, “Miann” is a songstress weaving together ethereal themes and down to earth melodies in her work. With lyrics both realistic and spiritual, she creates a dreamlike atmosphere with beautiful vocal melodies, electric guitar, and piano.

Fri., July 12 | Ben Schrag & The Cautionaries

Sweet, sad, and just a little rambunctious, Ben Schrag & the Cautionaries are a four-piece acoustic band from Ames, Iowa. Ben Schrag’s songwriting has received national awards from the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. Ben Schrag & the Cautionaries are: Cal Rebhuhn, Jim McNamara, Sara Goplin, and Ben Schrag.

Fri., July 19 | Mango Soul

Mango Soul is a 6-piece band from Ames and Des Moines. They blend elements of funk, jazz, neo-soul and modern R&B.

Fri., July 26 | Jason Munday

Jason Munday, an accomplished guitarist from Ames, Iowa, is renowned for his captivating fingerstyle performances and re-imagined renditions of his original music. With a career spanning over 15 years, he has engaged in songwriting, singing, producing, recording, touring, and extensive work as a studio musician, often drawing inspiration from pop culture themes like Star Wars and Harry Potter. After a decade-long hiatus, he returned to performing this year, embracing a new acoustic style highlighting the versatility and depth of what is possible with an acoustic guitar, captivating audiences with his unique blend of storytelling and technical skill.

Bandcamp

Fri., Aug 2 | TBD

More info coming soon!

Fri., Aug 9 | Fred Love & The Bakersfield Brawl

Fred Love is a singer, songwriter and guitarist from Ames, Iowa. He released his debut solo album, “Lily of the Valley,” in 2017. A native of an isolated farm town, Fred has always thought of his music as an extension of the most primal forms in the American songbook. Joined by drummer Cal Rebhuhn and bassist Pat Blair, Fred Love and the Bakersfield Brawl offers an electrified shot of cowpunk, honky tonk and Americana.

Fri., Aug 16 | Doomed Pioneers

Doomed Pioneers are an Ames-based vocal and guitar duo who dip in and out of their favorite genres from Bossa Nova to Folk. The name Doomed Pioneers stems from the field of Geology where it describes small critters living at the bottom of a shallow ocean who are unwillingly transported to the deep by mud-slides. In this new and strange environment they become pioneers, and because most of them will not succeed they are doomed. Deanna, an Arkansas transplant, and Jacqueline, from Switzerland, can relate and think making music is a pretty good way to find joy wherever life sweeps you.

Fri., Aug 23 | Friendly Forecast

More info coming soon!

Fri., Aug 30 | Iowa No Mountain Boys

The Iowa No Mountain Boys play a mix of original and traditional bluegrass music, paying homage to its roots. The band started during picking sessions on the porch of local bluegrass roustabout, Mark Hargrove, but quickly realized their line-up provided a unique and satisfying musical element that was missing in the local scene. Focusing on multi-part harmonies and driving instrumental breaks, the Iowa No Mountain Boys enjoy bringing the beauty of traditional bluegrass music to audiences new and old.

The current line up is Mark Hargrove on fiddle/vocals, Everett Hargrove on banjo, Andrew Hoiberg on guitar/vocals and Chris Myers on bass/vocals with the as-available addition of Kyle Murphy on mandolin/vocals.

Check out their Instagram page!

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