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Sunday, November 01 2015


•    1 yellow onion, sliced thinly 
•    1 tablespoon coconut oil, or butter 
•    2 cups parsnips, chopped 
•    10 oz. mushrooms, chopped
•    3 cloves garlic, minced 
•    1⁄4 cup nutritional yeast 
•    1 1⁄2 cups water 
•    1 1⁄2 teaspoons fine sea salt 
•    1 lb. fresh green beans


1.    Melt a pat of coconut oil, or butter, in a large skillet and add the sliced onions. Saute gently over medium-low heat for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally until caramelized. Use a splash of water, as needed, to prevent sticking. Once the onions are tender and golden in color, remove from heat and set aside in a bowl for later.

2.    While the onions are cooking, you’ll have plenty of time to steam the parsnips. Fit a steamer basket into a saucepan, and fill with one inch of water. Add the 2 cups of chopped parsnips, and bring the water to boil over high heat. Cover and reduce the heat to low, steaming for about 8 minutes, or until the parsnips are easily pierced with a fork. Transfer the steamed parsnips to your blender container, and set it aside.

3.    Using the same steamer basket and saucepan, break the pound of fresh green beans into one-inch pieces, and toss them into the steamer basket. Bring to a boil, then cover and steam for 6-8 minutes, until the green beans are bright green with a bit of crunch. Transfer the cooked green beans to an 8” x 8” glass baking dish. *Note: At this point, cook the green beans to be as tender as you like-- if you prefer them softer, steam them longer. The baking process later will not make them any more tender, so this is your chance to achieve the texture you like.

4.    Once the onions have finished caramelizing, you can use the same pan to saute the mushrooms and garlic. Melt another pat of coconut oil or butter, and saute the garlic for about 3 minutes, then add the mushrooms. Cook for about 6 minutes, until liquid is released from the mushrooms.

5.    Spread half of the mushroom mixture into the baking dish of green beans, and pour the other half of the mixture, along with any liquid, into the blender container with the steamed parsnips.

6.    Into that blender container, add 11⁄2 cups water, 11⁄2 teaspoons sea salt and 1⁄4 cup of nutritional yeast to the cooked parsnips and mushrooms. Blend until smooth and creamy. (This mixture may be a bit salty to taste at this point, but keep in mind that it will be diluted when it’s poured over a pound of green beans!)

7.    Pour the creamy sauce over the green beans and mushrooms in the glass baking dish, and stir to coat well. (You may very well have more sauce than you need for this recipe-- I only used about 11⁄2 cups to coat the vegetables well. Save the rest for a future dish!)

8.    Smooth the creamy vegetable mixture with a spatula, and top with the caramelized onions to finish. At this point, you could cover the dish and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to heat and serve.

9.    When you’re ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350F and bake uncovered for about 30 minutes, until bubbly. Serve warm and enjoy!

Recipe and Photo via


Posted by: Erin AT 08:11 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, November 01 2015


Diestel Turkey Ranch, founded in 1949, is one of the last small, family-owned turkey grower-processors in the United States, operated by 3rd & 4th generation ranchers Tim and Joan Diestel and two of their children. Nestled in the Sierra Nevada foothills in Sonora, California, this ranch boasts range grown turkeys fed a natural, 100% vegetarian diet that is milled on site. At Farm Fresh, the Diestel turkeys we carry receive non-GMO feed as well. All Diestel turkeys are humanely raised and harvested with great care and compassion. These delicious birds are consistently praised for looking and tasting better than your average grocery store bird, with a rich “old-fashioned flavor,” incredible tenderness, and texture. How can you celebrate Thanksgiving without one?


One reason Diestel turkeys taste so much better than the competition is due to the long, active lifestyles their birds live. Many of us are familiar with the term “free range,” meaning that the animals simply have access to the outdoors. At Diestel, they prefer to use the term “range-grown” as their adult turkeys actually live outdoors using the natural environment of trees and shrubs as shelter. They get plenty of exercise, moving freely throughout the range to forage, drinking clean mountain water, and breathing fresh air. Allowed to grow naturally, Diestel turkeys are raised twice as long as conventional ones, and with far more room to roam! These turkeys have time to be turkeys and enjoy life! When it comes to feeding the turkeys, Joan Diestel says, “No artificial anything!” Diestel’s turkeys never contain any artificial ingredients such as nitrates, phosphates, MSG, artificial colors or flavors. The Diestel family sources the best corn and soy available and has been milling their own feed since 1965, spending extra time and attention to ensure their turkeys have a healthy, natural diet. Turkeys are fed a 100% vegetarian diet with no antibiotics, growth enhancers, hormones, gluten, animal by-products or dried distillers grains. With a Diestel turkey, you can be confident that you’re feeding your family quality food this Thanksgiving, free of chemicals!


Now that you know where your turkey comes from, how are you going to cook your bird? After rinsing, patting, and 

stuffing your bird, the Diestel family suggests a simple rub recipe made of 4 Tbsp oil, 4 tsp. salt, and 2 tsp. paprika (and any of your other favorite herbs and spices). When it comes to roasting in the oven, 325F is just the right temperature (cooking times vary); there’s no need to turn the bird while cooking or use a bag, though placing a foil tent loosely over the turkey for the last hour can prevent too much browning. Don’t forget to cover the bottom of the pan with broth or water before you pop the bird in the oven! For a spectacular gravy, the Diestel family recommends pouring a heated cup of white wine over the turkey halfway through roasting time. Mm delicious!

The Farm Fresh Market and Diestel families are wishing you a most harmonious, delicious Thanksgiving!



Posted by: Becca AT 07:51 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, October 10 2015

• 15 apples (or as many as your crockpot will hold) 
• 1/4 cup honey (darker means higher nutrition) 
• 3 tablespoons cinnamon 
• 1/2 teaspoon cloves 
• 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 


1. Peel and core apples and cut up into chunks. Place in crockpot.
   Throw peels and cores to your dog.

2. Distribute the rest of the ingredients onto the tops of the apples
    in the crockpot. Don’t worry about mixing it all up yet. As the apples
   heat up and soften, you can begin mixing and mashing everything.

3. Set the crockpot on low for 8 hours. At about 6 hours, mash the
   apples (I use a potato masher), inside the pot.

4. Once they are finished, at 8 hours, throw everything in the food
   processor and process for a couple minutes until it is smooth.

5. Let cool in jars and store in the refrigerator. 

Recipe and image via More Than Paleo


Posted by: Judy AT 11:56 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, October 07 2015
The narrow defeat of GMO labeling initiatives in Washington and Oregon over the last two years got a lot of people talking about GMO crops. Although we may not see mandatory GMO labeling for some time, you can arm yourself with information and exercise your right to choose.

GMO stands for genetically modified organisms. They are a result of relatively new science and differ greatly from the age-old art of hybridizing. Hybrids are the result of cross-pollinating related plant species. GMO technology is a new process that combines genetic material from different species, and even different kingdoms, to create crops resistant to viruses, pesticide resistant crops, or crops with a longer shelf life.

There is a lot of controversy surrounding genetically modified crops, as well as many opposing studies and opinions. No scientific or medical consensus exists yet regarding their safety for human consumption. Based on the lack of evidence and long-term studies regarding their safety, many people chose to avoid GMOs and most developed nations have restrictions or bans on GM crops. GMOs have greatly increased the use of pesticides while threatening biodiversity. They also pose a host of environmental issues as well as potential human-health issues.

It can be hard to avoid GMO crops, especially in your average grocery store. According to the Non-GMO Project up to 80% of conventional processed foods contain GMOs. Here are 4 easy steps to help you avoid GMOs:


Buy Organic:

If a product is certified organic it cannot legally contain GMO ingredients. So the easiest way to avoid GMOs is to simply buy USDA organic! Whenever possible, we choose the organic option for our products and you'll find that the majority of the products we carry at Farm Fresh Market are certified organic to make your shopping as easy as possible. 

Look for Non-GMO Project Verified: The Non-GMO Project is a reputable third party that verifies a company's non-GMO claim. If you see the Non-GMO Project label, you know the product is made without GMOs! Many companies claim that their products are non-GMO on their packaging, but if the product isn't certified organic or non-GMO verified than treat their claim with a healthy amount of skepticism.
Avoid Common GM Crops: The most common genetically modified crops are: canola, corn, soy, cotton, sugar beets, papaya, and zucchini. To avoid GMOs, buy USDA certified organic when purchasing these crops. Organic foods are never grown from seeds that are genetically modified.
Shop at Farm Fresh Market: At Farm Fresh Market, we believe in your right to choose. We avoid bringing in new products that contain genetically modified ingredients, though we do carry a very small number of products with suspected GM ingredients. If you're trying to steer clear of GMOs let us know and we will gladly educate you on which products may contain GM ingredients. It is our goal to make it easy for you to find non-GMO produce, groceries, and meat for your family!


This handy cheatsheet from can help you decide if what you're about to eat has GMOs:


Posted by: Stephanie AT 06:38 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, October 01 2015

It’s local apple season again! We are just starting to fill our produce case with the best organic apples Washington has to offer. With over 14,000 acres of organic apple orchards, the great state of Washington grows the vast majority of organic apples in the US, and a wide variety too. You’re sure to find an apple for every taste and purpose.

Apples are one of the most cultivated trees in the world, with thousands of known cultivars. In the book and film, The Botany of Desire, Micheal Pollan paints a picture of an enterprising, highly successful plant that, by giving people what they want (sweetness 

and nutrients), has “succeeded” in prompting humans to spread it around the world, and has achieved a global population with over 7,500 varieties.

It is little wonder that the apple has succeeded; it is sweet, palatable, diverse and nutritious. The difference between all of the varieties can be overwhelming. We carry many varieties at Farm Fresh Market, all with their own unique properties, tastes, and applications.

Many apples grown commercially are the offspring of chance seedlings discovered in cider orchards, as hard cider was once the primary use of apples in the U.S. This includes the Red Delicious, one of the most popular sweet varieties. This apple was “discovered” in 1880 in the town of Peru, Iowa. Red Delicious are recommend salad or eating apples, as they do not cook well.

The Red Delicious is an important part of apple history not only for its current popularity, but also for its genetics. It is the confirmed parent of the Fuji apple and a suspected parent of the Cameo. The Fuji was introduced to the U.S. in 1980 from Japan, though both of its parents, the Red Delicious and the lesser known Ralls Janet, are of North American origin. The Fuji is crisp, mild, and sweet, and wonderful for eating raw, adding to salads, and for applesauce.

The prolific Red Delicious is also the likely parent of the Cameo, a new variety of apple. Most modern apples are results of breeding programs, but the Cameo came about the “old-fashioned” way, a discovered seedling in a Red Delicious orchard here in Washington. It is speculated that the Golden Delicious is the other parent of this variety. The Cameo has a mild, sweet flavor similar to the Red Delicious, but is crisper with thicker skin. Cameo is best eaten raw, as it does not withstand cooking as well as other varieties.

Though they sound closely related, the Golden Delicious is very different from the Red Delicious; they are closely named because they were marketed by the same West Virginia nursery in the early 20th Century. It is also an American variety and the parent of the popular Gala apple, and possibly the parent of the Cameo. The Golden Delicious is sweet and tart and is good fresh and is also stable enough for baking.

From another corner of the globe, we have the renowned Australian apple, the Granny Smith. The most popular tart apple, the Granny Smith’s exact lineage is unknown, but it is likely a relative of the French crab apple. This acidic fruit was a chance seedling in 1860 at the Australian orchard of Maria Ann Smith (Granny Smith). It is a great baking apple and highly recommended for pies.

Also from the Southern Hemisphere is the Gala, developed in New Zealand in the 1930s and grown and distributed around the world due to their flexible growing conditions (Galas will thrive in hot and cold climates). The Gala is the offspring of the Golden Delicious and Kidd’s Orange Red and is the parent apple of the sweet and tangy Jazz. It is a versatile apple that is good for eating raw, making applesauce, and juicing.

Look for the new Washington crops here at Farm Fresh Market as the days grow shorter and the nights are cold and crisp. We’ll have all of your old favorites and perhaps an opportunity to try something new. Happy crunching, saucing, juicing, and baking!


Posted by: Stephanie AT 11:45 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, September 06 2015

Grass-fed, grass-finished, pastured, organic, hormone-free, local... There are a lot of labels out there to decipher. Here’s what you need to know about grass-fed labels from the health benefits of grass-fed beef to how we source our selection of 100% grass-fed beef at Farm Fresh Market.

Why grass-fed? Cows are meant to eat grass, so when they consume large quantities of grain it leads to health problems which necessitate the use of antibiotics. Our beef is all raised without the use of antibiotics. Grass-fed beef is higher in heart-healthy Omega-3 fatty acids than grain-fed beef, while also lower in overall fat and calories. It’s naturally leaner and higher in nutrients. To borrow from Michael Pollan, “you are what you eat eats.” Cows evolved eating grass and are much healthier when they are able to eat their intended food, making grass-fed beef a healthier option for you and your family.

Many companies will simply state that their meat is “grass-fed,” which is true of nearly all cattle in the early months of its life. Most cattle live several months at pasture before being sold at auction. Then they are moved to “factory farms” where they're fattened on grain before becoming your steak. This is why you should look for grass-finished beef. There is no regulation of the term grass-fed, so the best way to ensure that you are getting truly grass-fed meat is to know your farmer and trust your butcher. At Farm Fresh Market, we can tell you were your meat comes from, how it was raised, and what it ate. We may fall just short of knowing the cow’s names, but we can probably find out for you! And all of our beef is 100% grass-fed, grass-finished. 

We buy whole cows from Stiebrs Farm in Yelm. Stiebrs raises 100% grass-fed, grass-finished cows on certified organic pasture. Stiebrs will not be renewing their organic certification, due to some exceedingly expensive and restrictive containment requirements that would require the farm to build new fences. They chose to concentrate on continuing to bring you the highest quality, humanely raised, healthful, and truly delicious beef. Because we buy whole cows, we carry a wide variety of Stiebrs beef, including steaks, ground, roasts, stew meat, liver and bones. An affordable way to stock your freezer with high quality beef is to buy ¼, ½, or whole Stiebrs cows through Farm Fresh Market. 

Colvin Ranch raises grass-fed, grass-finished beef near Tenino. The Ranch was homesteaded by the Colvins five generations ago, and they remain committed to raising cattle in a truly sustainable and humane fashion. All of their beef is hormone and antibiotic free. Look for their ground beef, liver and soup bones in our freezers. 

Many of you have come to love and depend on our fresh meat, which is processed daily in-house. The majority of our fresh beef comes from Pacific Pastures in Northern California. We strive to bring you not only the best options in grass-fed meat, but also a variety of options. We are not able to source our fresh beef, which we process in our store, from our local farmers since most of their meat is processed, vacuumed-packed, and frozen immediately. Instead we partner with Pacific Pastures, a small company comprised of independent ranches. Their cattle are always grass-fed, raised with high standards, and are never administered antibiotics or hormones. The Pacific Pastures label was started for farms that adhere to organic principles but don’t want to or haven’t yet gone through the rigors of certification. Depending on  

availability, we also carry Eel River, the parent company of Pacific Pastures, who raises cattle in a similar fashion, but is certified organic. We offer fresh ground round, ground chuck, top round steaks, top round roasts, and stew meat.

We also partner with Heritage meats to bring you 100% grass-fed, grass-finished beef from Jerry Foster’s Farm in Curtis, WA. Jerry raises his cattle on the fertile banks of the Chehalis, and Heritage processes this meat and brings us fresh steaks, roasts, and bones twice weekly. We can also special order nearly any cut of beef for you, just ask!







Posted by: Stephanie AT 06:35 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, September 06 2015

Let’s take some time to appreciate one of the things that makes living in America great: the cheeseburger. September 18th is National Cheeseburger Day! Seems like a good excuse to eat a grass-fed cheeseburger and learn a bit more about the history of the cheeseburger. 

1200: Mongol horseman stash raw meat under their saddles during their conquests. After a long day of pillaging the meat would transform into patties tender enough to eat. Through their travels, word of the tender meat patties reaches Hamburg, Germany where it gets the name, Hamburg Steak. 
1747: An English cookbook publishes a recipe for hamburg sausage. The recipe calls for minced beef seasoned with suet, pepper, cloves, nutmeg, garlic, wine vinegar, bay salt, red wine and rum, smoked for a week in a chimney.
1802: The Oxford English Dictionary defines the hamburg steak as a “hard slab of salted, minced beef, slightly smoked, mixed with onions and bread crumbs.” 
1873: The hamburg steak appears on the first printed menu at Delmonico’s in New York. 
1900: Louis Lassen creates a hamburg steak sandwich at his restaurant in New Haven. The sandwich consists of ground beef trimmings made into a patty, grilled, and placed between two pieces of toast.
1916: Short-order cook, Walter Anderson invents a bun specifically for hamburgers. His invention is so successful that he founds the first hamburger chain, “White Castle.”
1924: At the age of 16, Lionel Sternberger puts a slice of American cheese on a cooking hamburger at his father’s sandwich shop in California. It was a hit and they added it to the menu calling it a cheese hamburger.
1934: Charles Kaelin claims to invent the cheeseburger at his restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky stating he wanted to “add a new tang to the hamburger.”
1935: Louis Ballast, owner of Humpty Dumpty Barrel Drive-In in Denver files a patent for the cheeseburger. Despite all other claims of inventing the cheeseburger, Louis holds the patent and is considered to its lawful creator.

We don’t care who invented them, or where they originated, we’re just glad they exist. Whether you top ‘em with pickles, onion rings, bacon or even an egg, make sure your beef is 100% grass-fed and grass-finished! On September 18th, let’s all raise a cheeseburger in celebration of a truly great American holiday, National Cheeseburger Day.


Posted by: Erin AT 06:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, September 06 2015
Writer, artist, steak-lover, and fledgling photographer, meet Hannah, who is Canadian, speaks fluent French, and cuts a mean tenderloin steak!

What do you do at Farm Fresh Market and how long have you worked here? I work as a meat cutter, and have been here since June, 3 months.

What drew you to natural foods? I’ve worked in a meat department before, and I really enjoyed it. Natural foods are good because you can have more trust in where you are getting the food, how they are treating both the animals and, especially if it’s local, you can have more trust in how they are treating the workers as well. It’s also more healthy and sustainable. Treatment of workers is one of my biggest things, on a personal level. I am cognizant of how the people who produce my food are treated. With local foods it’s often a family business, so it’s easier to know people are treated well.

Are you a native Washingtonian? I am not. I was actually raised in Canada, I have dual citizenship; I am both American and Canadian. I am from the Great Lakes Region. I was born in Michigan, then moved across Lake Erie, to Ontario, then back to Michigan, where I went to high school and university.

What’s your favorite thing about working at Farm Fresh Market? I like the work that I do. I like how I am trusted to know what to do, and to do it.

Do you have any products you love? I really enjoy the Stumptown coffee with milk in it, it’s the only iced coffee I’ve been able to find that’s not ridiculously sweet. It’s tasty! I also like the Nineveh sandwiches.

What’s your favorite fall meal? I don’t really have a concept of season specific meals, I enjoy comfort foods in the fall! I’ve recently been making the dish where you make a hole in your bread and fry an egg in it, I made it the other day with leftover curry thrown in, so delicous! I think it’s called eggs in a basket?

What do you do in your free time? I write, and draw. I recently got a camera too, so I’ve been taking lots of pictures. I’ve been watching a lot of movies too.


Posted by: Stephanie AT 06:15 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, August 23 2015

When she’s not creating ceramic sculptures or planning her escape to Africa to save baby rhinos, you can find her here at Farm Fresh Market, where’s she’s always ready to lend a helping hand! Meet Becca, who once performed in a choir at Carnegie Hall, and knows from experience that you can’t walk a cat on a leash.

What do you do at Farm Fresh Market and how long have you worked here?

About a month and a half. I do all sorts of things, produce, cashier. I like to help make improvements when I can. I like to organize and do whatever I can to make business run smoothly.

What drew you to natural foods?
I am very concerned with the environment and animal welfare, so it’s important that I learn all that I can and help support smaller farms. I am interested in cruelty-free meat, and the more humane treatment of animals. I am kind of beginning with natural foods, I am learning to eat healthier for myself so I can improve my own health and the health of those around me. 

Are you a native Washingtonian?
No, I am an army brat, born in Germany. I moved to Washington about 5 years ago to start my life over, before that I lived in Alabama, and Colorado, etc; I’m pretty well traveled. I love Washington! I miss fireflies and thunderstorms though!

What’s your favorite thing about working at Farm Fresh Market?
I have some really great coworkers. I am really lucky to have an amazing boss who really cares and is passionate about their work. I also really love seeing all of the local vendors come in with all of their lovingly handcrafted products. Oh, and giving stickers to kids at the register!

Do you have any products you love?
I love the Nineveh Za’atar Pita Chips, I love them with the Exquisite and Traditional Hummus, and of course all of the fresh produce. I can’t wait to get some “alien broccoli” aka Romanesco Broccoli!

What’s your favorite summer meal?
Good grilled bbq meat, doesn’t matter what cut, with some vegetables grilled up too.

What do you do in your free time?
I do ceramics, I love to build animal sculptures, I’m very inspired to make some produce pieces now. I love playing with cats and spending any time with any animals! Of course I like to binge on Netflix and things like that, but that’s not as cool! I like to take local hikes, I wish I could turn my cat into a dog so that he could go hiking!



Posted by: Stephanie AT 07:36 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, August 04 2015
Wild hedgerows,hay fields, forest, and a shimmering creek provide the backdrop for the beautiful 35 acres that make up Rising River Farm. Owners Jim McGinn and Jennifer Belknap grow over 100 varieties of organic veggies, culinary herbsand strawberrieson their property in Rochester, Washington.

That's along way from where they started in 1994 when Jim McGinn and a couple friends co-founded Rising River on 3 acres of leased land. Their tractors were borrowed, their office was the back of an old pick-up truck, and they lived out of a couple of trailers and a school bus. Their goal was, and still is, to create healthy soil that yields healthy food. Through careful stewardship of their land and enthusiastic community support they have grown their farm. They continue to promote healthy soil and reduce the presence of disease and pests through rotation, cover cropping, resting of the land, and proper fertilization.

Jennifer Belknap came on the scene in 1997 after Jim's partners moved on to other callings. She had her own roots in farming, starting in 1994 in Vermont. She went on to co-found her own cooperatively-run vegetable farm in the Skagit River Valley. Since then Jim and Jennifer
have run Rishing River together, had two children, and gotten married. And things just keep growing for them.

Their CSA program is thriving and you can find them at the Olympia Farmers Market and Tacoma Procter Markets. Not to mention in our very own produce case right here at Farm Fresh Market! Ask us next time your in and we'll be happy to point out which of our fresh, organic produce was grown by Jim, Jennifer and the crew at Rising River Farm. Find out more about Rising River at their website


Posted by: Erin AT 07:27 am   |  Permalink   |  Email