For many of us, lobster is a summer delicacy whose dark exterior can’t be resisted during a sale like Lobsterpalooza. It’s Saturday evening and you have returned triumphant from the Co-op–and maybe taken a nap (or two) to recover from the early morning and the excitement you exuded at the store prior. But…now what? Here are ten lobster-based recipes with ingredients worthy of your bargain crustacean:
Even if you’ve never cooked a lobster, there are recipes floating around that you’ve probably at least heard of. Like the more-classic-than-classic Maine Lobster Roll. If you want to dine like our neighbors to the east, try this Maine Lobster Roll recipe. A heartier classic is Lobster Mac and Cheese, which combines multiple rich cheese flavors with the decadent taste of the lobster, like in this recipe. Another recipe commonly found on the seafood restaurant docket is Lobster Bisque. Now that you have the tools to make it at home you can add as much lobster as you want to each serving.
While the classics are great, if you’re going out of your cooking comfort zone by purchasing lobster in the first place, why not try something completely new? This first recipe wins the award for “most seasonal.” Fresh lobster is already a tried and true sign of summer. It’s like adding three exclamation points to the end of the word any time you use it in a sentence-even if it’s in the middle. But this Lobster Salad with Sweet Corn and Tomatoes is like sky-writing the word “summer” in all capital letters across the beach on a hot July day.
A way to bring lobster into the day time that’s not in roll-form is in this colorful Lobster Cobb Salad. If you want the pasta without the cheese this Lobster Pasta with Herbed Cream Sauce is a delicious alternative. Plus we won’t tell anyone if you throw some fresh parmesan on top. The most popular way to cook lobster is boiling or steaming it, but you can also grill it to get that summertime smoky aroma. On the other hand, you can heat up the oven for some savory Baked Stuffed Lobster Tails. Either way, you get to enjoy a delicious meal with the natural seafood flavors you love.
Now even though whole lobsters are the focal point of Lobsterpalooza, lobster in a recognizable form does not have to be the focal point of your dish. Take these Loaded Lobster Burgers, for example. They disguise themselves as regular patties, but one bite reveals their rich flavor that pairs so well with the homemade aioli and salsa (and more) that sit upon it. Last but not least, you can never go wrong with pizza. This Brown Butter Lobster and Spinach Pizza is a great way to introduce skeptical crowds to the power of lobster.
How will you be preparing your Lobsterpalooza lobster? Share with us on social media!
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This Saturday (July 6th), co-ops around the world will come together to celebrate the International Day of Cooperatives. Well, they won’t actually come together in some big block party style extravaganza (that would be pretty neat, though). But in the spirit of principle #6 (cooperation among cooperatives), we all individually take the day to celebrate the breadth and the resiliency of the cooperative spirit. The cooperation doesn’t stop at the exterior of the Littleton Food Co-op; step inside and you will find a number of other cooperatives on the shelves as well. In honor of International Day of Cooperatives, here are just some of the other cooperatives you can find within your local food co-op:
You might not realize it, as the brand has dropped the “cooperative” from their brand name, but Cabot is actually owned by over 800 member dairy farmers. Cabot celebrates a big milestone this year, as 100 years have passed since the original group of 94 farms came together to form their cooperative. As the organization has grown and evolved, they remain steadfast in their commitment to the cooperative principles, sustainability, and “hard work and a tireless dedication to quality make our products stand apart.”
As the name implies, at the core of Equal Exchange is their belief that “we should expect no less from ourselves and each other than we demand of our farmer partners.” They thought the best way to do this was through forming a worker-owned cooperative. As labels like “fair trade” and “organic” are popping up left and right, Equal Exchange stays true to its values in creating high quality coffees, teas, and chocolates, while empowering farmers and consumers.
Bob, the owner and namesake behind Bob’s Red Mill, has an “honest-to-goodness” approach that shapes every whole grain flour product that comes out of his mill. His passion for a healthy lifestyle, quality, and generosity flow through the organization like grain through their old-fashioned stone mills. It is perhaps this last quality that prompted Bob to hand over his company to his employees in 2010, stating “I don’t think there’s anybody worthy to run this company but the people who built it.” Even though this co-op is relatively new, it’s clear that the cooperative values run deep through its 200+ owners.
4. Ocean Spray
Unlike Bob’s Red Mill, Ocean Spray has been a farmer cooperative since its very inception back in 1930. Ocean Spray produces its cranberry products through the voluntary cooperation of over 700 farm families. Ocean Spray’s motto, “Act Tiny. Be Mighty.” demonstrates its commitment to each farmer-owner, and its long history of success in the face of adversity shows the power of democratic member control.
5. Land O’Lakes
Land O’Lakes has always been committed to innovation and community– and it credits that to its cooperative roots. A united front among 1,700 farmer-owners is what has allowed the co-op to remain a leader in better butter production. If you were unaware of their cooperative structure, it makes more sense when you discover that Land O’Lakes was founded back in 1921 on the idea that “we’re better when we work together.” As their product line has evolved over the past century to become more consumer focused, it’s no surprise that they take just as much care with their business structure.
Blue Diamond Almonds is a cooperative 3,000 growers strong. Their diverse product line is made possible from the commitment of generations of farmers. The singular commitment of Blue Diamond Almonds is to “bring the benefits of almonds to the world.” Rather than take chances on this mission, this co-op insists on making conscientious decisions to better life for their grower-owners and consumers. Their care and quality has catapulted them to the forefront of their craft.
Products from all of these cooperatives are available at the Littleton Food Co-op, your community-owned market dedicated to support cooperatives everyday.
With some summer weather upon us more and more beer drinkers are looking for fruity sour beers. Prairie Artisan Ales from Oklahoma makes a Pink Guava Funk that definitely qualifies as a fruity summer sour. Technically an American Wild Ale, this wild-yeast fermented kettle sour pours a hazy copper with a fine white foam head. The aroma has guava, acidic tropical fruits…… and quite a lot of funk! The flavor is very sour with tart lemon and guava shining through in the finish. It has mild carbonation and a light body, but a respectable 6.3% ABV. Definitely something that every sour lover should give a try, now available at the Co-op.
Rather than relying on silly metrics like star sign or career, we only make inferences about people using hard, undeniable facts–like their hot dog condiment preferences. There is no better time to analyze someone than the Fourth of July, a time when Americans are estimated to eat 150 million hot dogs. Take a second to think of your go-to topping for your dog and get ready to learn something about yourself today.
You appreciate the simple things in life, like a walk in the woods, or humming your favorite melody. You’re not a materialistic person either, and friends love being able to see the “real you” all the time. This stems from your innate belief that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” which applies to most things in your life, including your hot dogs.
Overall, you’re a pretty simple person. But that isn’t a bad thing! You have a number of different interests, meaning you’re always down to go with the flow. Your coworkers would label you as “dependable” in a heartbeat, and friends turn to you when they need a comforting shoulder to lean on.
You are slightly unpredictable–and we mean that in the best way possible. You have an unstoppable adventurous spirit; it’s a surprise that you’re in one spot long enough to even eat a hot dog. Everyone around you is always kept on their toes. Your boldness can sometimes get you into trouble, but those who know you best know you make up for it with the sweetness underneath.
There is no doubt that you are prepared for anything. The struggle people have when getting you involved is getting you to make a decision. You have a set of somewhat unconventional interests, but you’ve found a close group of friends that share the same passions. Together, you all can take on anything sweet or sour that comes your way.
Friends might call you a traditionalist, but you wouldn’t put that label on yourself. Sure you have an obsession with family history, and only vintage fashion, but everything you pull from the past is updated with a modern twist. You crave the city life, or at the very least the adrenaline and new people that come with it. Your friends love that you don’t take “no” for an answer.
Chili and Cheese
A heavily frequented word in your vocabulary is “YOLO.” Your life mantra is all about acting first and thinking later. If this scares people off, they are easily won over by your unwavering optimism. Since you are all about making your own decisions, you are not afraid to assert your authority when necessary.
People don’t know much about you, actually. Even if you’re not an introvert, you still appreciate your alone time. When you do make a public appearance, your flair for the dramatic tends to push you to the center of a crowd.
At one point, your dream career was “daredevil.” The remnants of that dream can still be seen in the way you’re always looking for another thrill. Life gave you the entire seat but you prefer to sit on the edge. You can handle the heat that life throws at you and function well in high pressure environments.
Did we miss a topping? Let us know your favorite way to dress your dog! Happy Fourth, Cooperators!
Grilling has practically become synonymous with the Fourth of July in American culture. In fact, about 75% of American homes have a grill. If you don’t have your own fond grilling memories, it doesn’t take much screen time, whether it’s on social media or television, to find someone else’s. However, it becomes difficult to distinguish one person’s meal from another (is that picture from a box-store tv commercial or my neighbor Rob?). It’s all various meats in various shapes, maybe a couple veggie skewers, and an ear of corn if you’re lucky. This gave us an ambitious idea: is it possible to grill every part of a Fourth of July barbecue? After sleepless nights of research, we reached the verdict:
It is possible to grill every part of a Fourth of July meal.
And we mean every part.
Read on for ways to serve a full course meal that no one will expect but everyone will love. We think that these recipes turn out the best when used with as many local ingredients as possible! Our selection of local products is constantly evolving, so stop by the Co-op before trying out one of these.
Appetizers for the Fourth of July have a serious job to do. Bite-sized morsels throughout the day are the equivalent of crowd control at a rowdy concert. If you want to keep it simple and classic, opt for some chips and Grilled Corn Salsa. This option will take just 15 minutes of work to satisfy guests for hours. If you’re looking for something heartier, Barbecue Meatballs take a bit more time, but produce a strong flavor that put frozen meatballs to shame. However, we know that this meal is a marathon, not a sprint. These Grilled Zucchini Wraps are a great low-cal way to silence those first cravings. Plus, they are gluten free!
We thought this course might require a slight modification to the laws of physics. How else would soup (a liquid) stay atop a grill (a solid)? Turns out, the trick is to break out the grill before the broth. This Grilled-Vegetable Gazpacho proves that soup does not have to hide in the warm months. The link also includes recipes for other soups, but we chose the cold soup to complement the (hopefully) warm weather on Independence Day.
As far as grilled salads go, a romaine grilled salad is pretty traditional. This Grilled Caesar Salad not only delivers on the traditional flavor, but it is also gluten free and vegan, as the dressing uses hemp seeds. The incredible flavors of this Grilled Kale Avocado Salad make us want to keep the grill out all year. It will definitely be hard to leave room in your stomach for other courses after you taste the delicious flavor (not to mention the key nutrients).
Feel free to stop reading if you think salads only have lettuce and you don’t like flavor. Okay, we didn’t mean to be harsh, but we felt like this unique Grilled Eggplant Caprese needed its own warning. Plus, who wants to wait until the very end of the barbecue to eat the watermelon? This Grilled Watermelon Salad brings the summertime favorite into the mix earlier and with unexpected flavor.
Even among all the other amazing options you serve, your guests are truly anticipating the main course. Your best bet here is to go down the traditional path. But, this doesn’t mean you’re lacking options.
On Independence Day each year Americans consume 150 million hot dogs, according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. There’s no fun in having them plain, so try one Chicago Style or dressed as a Cowboy Hot Dog.
The Fourth of July is this basic weeknight meat’s chance to show you what it can do. It can be part of a nostalgic classic, such as Grilled BBQ Chicken Wings. It can be between two buns, like in this Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Caesar-ish Dressing. It can even be on a stick, like on these Pineapple Teriyaki Chicken and Bacon Skewers
A beef patty is another American classic perfect for Independence Day. You can go the extra-classic route with a Bacon Cheeseburger with Caramelized Onions. This recipe has extra cheese, making it delightfully irresistible. The Inside-Out Blue Cheese Burger also revolves around the cheese –literally. The cheese is hidden inside the burger for an unexpected tang.
Shrimp is another great thing served on a stick. In this Lemon Garlic Shrimp Skewer recipe the flavor practically screams “summer.” For a more intense flavor, try this recipe for Jumbo Stuffed Shrimp which grills the shrimp in the shell.
Pork is not everyone’s festive go-to, but friends will forget any hesitation once they see these Bourbon BBQ Glazed Pork Chops. Or try it in a slider format, such a these Tennessee Pulled Pork Sandwiches. They require more of your time, but they will fly off the plate faster than you can name the recipe.
The best way to compliment steak on the grill? Grill its counterparts! In Dry-Rubbed Flank Steak with Grilled Corn Salsa, these two distinct flavors connect for a powerhouse dish. If you want to focus on grilling the meat, this Sweet Onion-Marinated Skirt Steak will satisfy your grilling wishes and savory desires.
Just because one of your guests avoids meat, doesn’t mean they have to miss out on the grilling fun. They don’t even have to miss out on burgers with this Portobello Peach Burger. An alternate option is these delicious looking Beer-Brushed Tofu Skewers. In any case, we recommend cooking all vegetarian options first on the grill to guarantee there is no contact with the meat option.
No rightful summer party is complete without side dishes. Everyone’s favorite starch can be dressed up as Grilled Ranch Potatoes, or its sassy sister the sweet potato can be diced up for Grilled Sweet Potatoes. Another classic grill accessory is grilled corn. The easiest way to add it to your meal is to pair it with this Lemon-Pepper Butter. If you want to incorporate more vegetables in the mix, try this recipe for Grilled Green Beans.
This was the one component of the meal we were most skeptical about. Could it be done? Not only can it be done, it can be done well. For an option the entire family can enjoy, grill up this special Lemonade (never a sentence we thought we’d be saying). If you want to wow your adult guests, a Grilled Strawberry Cocktail is the way to do it. Grilling the strawberries deepens the flavor and makes them sweeter than we thought possible.
Perhaps nothing is more American than apple pie. But this Grilled Apple Pie a la Mode? It’s as if a bald eagle in a flag-print top was jumping over the statue of liberty while holding a sparkler. A great alternative is Skillet Brownies, who’s warm, gooey texture will make you wish they were the all-American dessert. On the other hand, Grilled Watermelon with Yogurt is a more refreshing dish with a slight tang. It’s perfect for when you really can’t eat anymore, but you really want dessert.
If you feel at all overwhelmed by so much grilling, there’s no need to fret! These recipes are great for any summer day. Happy Fourth, Cooperators!
Start the summer off right by enjoying some calcium-rich foods in celebration of National Dairy Month this June. This honor was bestowed upon June back in 1937, and has been a running tradition ever since. If you’re fortunate enough to not be lactose intolerant, dairy products contain important dietary intakes including calcium, potassium, and vitamin D. These key nutrients offer a plethora of health benefits, including helping to prevent heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and having healthier bones, skin, and teeth. Even if you are unable to enjoy dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt, we can all appreciate the fact that the dairy industry is becoming more environmentally sustainable. Dairy farmers are now using 90% less land and 65% less water to give us the same high quality products. In addition, the dairy industry is responsible for nearly one million jobs in the U.S, including a number in our community. Check out the dairy coolers at the Co-op to find products from producers like Robie Farm, Hatchland Farm, and Brookford Farm to support your local dairy industry.
‘Tis the season for Dads and grads! This Sunday (June 16th) is Father’s Day, and the only thing worse than Dad jokes is not having anything to show the father figure in your life just how much he means. To make your life easier, we curated a list of perfect gifts for Dad with help from our employees at the Co-op. Each Dad different, but our list has something for everyone. The best part is that they’re all in one convenient place: the Littleton Food Co-op! Even better: Some of our recommendations are on special this week! Look no further for gift inspiration:
For the Grill Dad
You can never find the Grill Dad in the house but you can always smell the savory aroma of his next grilled creation. He never feels better than when his men’s sandals are strapped on and he has a firm hand on his grill tools. This weekend, help him do great work by picking up some Yakiniku Marinated Sirloin Tips. They’ll please Dad AND the rest of the family!
For the 9-5 Dad
The 9-5 Dad looks like every cartoon father figure ever: tie around his neck, stressed look on his face, coffee cup in hand. Make his life a little easier by filling that cup on his special day. We recommend any of the Equal Exchange Coffee blends from the bulk department. This is a win-win gift because Dad gets his caffeine fix, and Equal Exchange can continue its mission to support small-scale farmers around the world through partnerships that are “economically just and environmentally sound.”
For the Active Dad
This Dad is also never in the house, but he tends to step a little further away from the backyard. Whether it’s biking, hiking, kayaking, or bungee jumping, the Active Dad is always on the move. If you can get him to sit still long enough to give him a present, he will definitely appreciate a bag of Superfruit Trail Mix. This organic blend of nuts and dried fruit will fuel his next adventure and then some.
For the Veteran Dad
A 4-pack of B-72 from 14th Star Brewery is something everyone, especially the Veteran Dad, can appreciate. The idea for 14th Star Brewery was developed on the battlefields of Afghanistan, but currently resides in our neighbor state of Vermont. The operation was founded by two veterans, and they use their company to give back to multiple charities that support veterans and their families. Plus it tastes good.
For the Sentimental Dad
The Sentimental Dad has never thrown away any of your elementary school artwork (or done so with great regret). His favorite way to spend the day is with family, and his favorite hobby is reminiscing. That’s why he will appreciate a S’mores kit with Annie’s Honey Grahams, fluffy Dandies Marshmallows, and rich Endangered Species Chocolate Bars that will remind him of your childhood. He will be overjoyed if you assemble the s’mores together.
For the Picky Dad
The Picky Dad has evolved into many forms. He might be a picky eater like the name implies. He might be really hard to shop for because he “doesn’t care what you get him.” Or he just might like that one type of chocolate you simply can’t seem to remember the name of. Whatever the situation may be, the best gift for the Picky Dad is a Co-op gift card. For this type of Dad, a gift card doesn’t mean laziness on your behalf; it means “I love you enough to let you pick out your own gift.”
For the Vegetable Dad
In some regions, the Vegetable Dad is few and far between. Lucky for us, we have Brian, Produce Manager, in residence to provide his input. When we asked him what he would like to receive for Father’s Day from the Co-op, his answer was simple: “Produce.” No big shocker there I guess. The Vegetable Dad will be thrilled with our selection of fresh and local variety of produce available all summer long.
Happy Father’s Day! How do you plan to make it a great day?
Mozzarella (Motzerella? Mozzerella? Motzer-ell-a? Motorola? Mozzerela? Mozzarella.) is the most popular (official stat) and most misspelled (unofficial stat) around the globe. That being said, there’s a high probability you enjoy it, too. But are you using mozzarella to its full potential? It can be consumed at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and compliment any food group. Read on for inspiration for National Cheese Day (June 4th).
Cheese is a superstar of flavor, and is more than willing to carry the weight of a recipe if you let it. A perfect example is America’s collective childhood comfort food– grilled cheese. The idea itself has a minimum of two ingredients (cheese, bread) but the range of complexity chefs have developed make it more than the sidekick of tomato soup. Check out this recipe that compliments the mozzarella with a fresh basil pesto.
What’s red, green, and white and not a holiday? Caprese salad! This is another dish in which mozzarella shines against a relatively short list of ingredients. The key to making this is to make sure you use the freshest ingredients. While most recipes will look the same, this one has the option to substitute arugula for the traditional basil.
The words “cheese” and “dip” do not just have to mean fondue. The new trend with cheese dip is deconstructing cheesy foods into dip format. Here’s an example: Pizza Dip. This is a delicious way to enjoy the contents of a whole pizza without the judgement from family and friends.
Do you want to eat an entire pound of mozzarella cheese? What if we cut it up, fried it, and served it with marinara sauce? Mozzarella sticks are a classic restaurant appetizer, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be brought home. The beauty of making them at home is that you can make as many as you want (because we know that the amount the restaurant provides is never enough). Enjoy this recipe.
Another part of the versatility of mozzarella is that it can be a star or an extra, aka a main ingredient or just a garnish. Since cheese objectively makes everything better, try adding a sprinkle of mozzarella atop your next soup, salad, sandwich, pasta, pizza, etc.
How do you use mozzarella? Share with us your best ideas on Facebook or Instagram! Need more inspiration? National Cheese Day is every day at the specialty cheese department at the Co-op!
Get set for great grilling with these grilling tips.
Start your grill about 30 minutes before you begin cooking. It’s a good idea to have a hot side for grilling meat and a cooler side for grilling fish, seafood and vegetables.
If you don’t have a gas grill, consider using chunk charwood, which is preferred by chefs because it burns clean and hot, sealing in the flavor and moisture of grilled foods. Since charwood is produced with nonlumber wood fired in kilns, it is also the best environmental choice.
Aside from traditional grill items like beef, chicken and sausages you can add that char-grilled flavor to items such as:
Soak the corn in cold water for 30 minutes, peel back the husk, remove the silk, return the husk; then grill for 15–20 minutes, turning frequently.
Wash fresh mushrooms quickly under running water; then pat dry. Skewer or place in a grill basket. Brush with oil and grill for 5–7 minutes. Whole portabello mushrooms take 10–20 minutes, depending on their size.
Slice thickly and brush with oil. Cook onions directly on the grid at mediumhigh heat until they start to turn brown. You can also roast an onion by cutting it in half, wrapping it in foil with a little butter, and cooking it for about 30–45 minutes at medium heat.
Grill whole peppers at high heat until skin is charred black, about 15–20 minutes. Cool in a paper bag for 15 minutes to loosen blackened skin. Peel and remove seeds.
Wrap baking potatoes in foil. Cook at medium heat for 25–30 minutes or until tender.
You can cook shellfish on the grill. If they are large, such as prawns or crab you can grill them directly on the grid. Smaller shellfish, such as mussels, clams, oysters, scallops or shrimp can be skewered or cooked in a basket. Shrimp take about 8–12 minutes depending on their size.
Choose steaks that are no thicker than 1 1/2 inches, and which have some visible fat marbling for tenderness. To keep the juices intact, use tongs rather than a fork to turn your meat. At the hottest setting, sear for 1–2 minutes per side. Then move to a medium heat and cook for about 4 minutes per side for rare (it will feel fleshy to touch), 6 minutes per side for well-done steak (it will feel firm).
Spare ribs are the most popular type of grilling pork ribs. Avoid using a direct heat source. Indirect cooking at a low temperature for several hours will produce very tender ribs. Season with a dry rub before you grill and add barbecue sauce at the end of grilling. Use a drip pan with water or other liquids, such as broth or juice, to keep ribs moist.
Firm fish, such as tuna, salmon or halibut can be cooked directly on the grill if handled carefully. A hinged wire grill basket is best for cooking whole fish or tender fillets. Grill fillets at medium to medium-low heat. Fish can cook quickly so turn only once to keep from crumbling.
This post originally appeared on Co+op, Stronger Together: www.strongertogether.coop/food-lifestyle/cooking/get-the-grill-started