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California Whole-Grain Supplier Expands to Online Market

California Whole-Grain Supplier Expands to Online Market


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Whole-grain supplier Community Grains will now reach a larger consumer base than their current Northern California market, as their products will now be sold to a wider audience through Food52’s online store. Community Grains founder Bob Klein is excited for the opportunity to distribute his goods through Food52, as he views it as a great outlet and an excellent opportunity to grow Community Grains’ brand.

Also the owner of Oliveto in Oakland, Calif., Klein founded Community Grains in 2007 and envisions the company as a way to set up a "local grain economy" to promote and facilitate the development of local, non-industrialized whole grains that are healthy and delicious. Through Community Grains, he also hopes to educate consumers on the health benefits of consuming whole-grain versus refined wheat products.

Klein feels it is extremely important to educate the public on the benefits of eating whole grains because, "there’s forceful research that suggests that white refined flour is now linked to lots of very serious diseases such as heart disease and cancer," he says.

Community Grains now offers a complete whole-grain line of flours, dry pasta, heritage Italian polenta, and heirloom beans. They define whole grain as the grain in its entirety, 100 percent of germ, bran, and endosperm found in grain, according to FDA guidelines. They go beyond these guidelines by never adding anything extra, and the flour is never refined nor are the three components of the grain separated.

Just as The Daily Meal community holds its cooking to the highest standard, Food52’s mission is about good cooks looking for good cooking, so Klein is excited to be distributing his products to their readers. "Most exciting to me is the idea of what whole grains are is changing. People had bad feelings about whole grain because of whole wheat. Now, very good chefs are using our flours, etc., and we’re excited that a lot of new things are coming out," Klein said in an interview with The Daily Meal. Now, with Community Grains’ expanded market, there is just another ingredient to try in your cooking endeavors.


Agrarian since the 1910s, our patrons appreciate we oversee all facets of production – from growing & harvesting, to milling & packaging of Japanese style rice & flours. Today, we also partner with select local farmers in our ongoing pursuit of rice nonpareil.

Our grandfather, Keisaburo Koda, was born in 1882 in the Fukushima prefecture of Japan. His father, formerly a samurai of the Taira Clan, became an established miller and broker of rice products. Earning a university degree, Keisaburo consequently secured a position as a school principal in his twenties. Familiar with stories of fellow countrymen journeying to America to seek their fortunes, Keisaburo eventually resigned to pursue his dreams. MORE

KODA FARMS PRODUCTS — GOURMET RICE


San Giovanni- St. Jean

Place in a large jar, with the alcohol and let sit for 24 hours in the sun, and cover with a lid.

Add the the ingredients of part 2.
Shake the jar once a day for 40 days, leaving it in the sun!

Filter and add the simple syrup, cooled, part 3.

Let age for another month.

Serve in tiny glasses at the end of a meal.

I love to drizzle the liqueur over vanilla ice cream. Some people save the walnut pieces, cover them with sherry, and serve them chopped as dessert.

* Everclear in Italy is 95% alcohol which is 190 proof and not for drinking straight.
When I was in California, I found whole grain alcohol, but it was 75% alcohol( 150 proof), not 95%.

This is why you learned fractions in school!
With the 95% alcohol, if you cut the infusion in half by adding an equal part of the simple syrup,
you create a 47% nocinowhich is 95 proof and drinkable, like a 100 proof vodka.

Using the California whole grain, if I do equal parts infusion and simple syrup,
I get a 33% nocino, which is much lighter.

If you want to make it less alcoholic, increase the amount of simple syrup.

2 parts of simple syrup to one part infusion gives you a 33% alcohol nocino with the 95%
but with the Californian version would be 25%, very light.

Often recipes suggest using 100 proof Vodka in the states.
That only needs sugar added.

In doing my research I also found recipes that included: quinine bark, dried rose buds and orange rind.

Everyone has a version. I hope you enjoy creating your own.

Let me hear about your results.

My husband says I am a bit of a strega, witch, when I start making my potions,
but I adore the alchemy that has been passed on through the ages.


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November 19th is “International Whole Grain Day” being celebrated by the European based Whole Grain Initiative Organization.

We would like to invite you to celebrate with us:

You are invited to experience genuine California whole grains through this showcase for California bakers, pasta-makers, tortilla makers, chefs, happy customers and whole grain enthusiasts with a story to tell about genuine whole grain foods.

Program for November 19th:

9:00 - 9:15 AM - Roxana Jullapat, Friends & Family Bakery

9:15 - 9:30 AM - Monica Spiller, The Whole Grain Connection

9:30 - 9:45 AM - Harmony Sage, Long Beach Beer and Bread Lab

9:45 - 10:00 AM - Alina Janes, Janes Baking Co.

Click here to listen to these speakers

10:00 AM PST. Moderator: Monica Spiller

10:00 - 10:15 AM - Mac McConnell, The Midwife and the Baker

10:15 - 10:30 AM - Josey Baker, Josey Baker Bread and The Mill

10:30 - 10:45 AM - Christina Ng, Chinitas Pies

10:45 - 11:00 AM - Hilary Boynton and Charles Barth, School of Lunch

11:00 AM PST. Moderator: Nan Kohler

11:00 - 11:15 AM - Mai Nguyen, Farmer Mai

11:15 - 11:30 AM - Elizabeth DeRuff, Honoré Farm and Mill

11:30 - 11:45 AM - Brianna Bayley, Whole Grain Enthusiast

11:45 - 12:00 PM - Teng Vang, CWC and Whole Grain Enthusiast

12:00 PM PST. Moderator: Claudia Carter

12:00 - 12:15 PM - Rose Wilde, Red Bread

12:15 - 12:30 PM - Alejandra Andrade, CWC and Whole Grain Enthusiast

12:30 - 12:45 PM - Clemence de Lutz, The Gourmandise School

12:45 - 1:00 PM - Patrice Winter, The Canyon Bakery

01:00 PM PST. Moderator: David Kaisel

1:00 - 1:15 PM - Kenney Enney, Enney Ranch

1:15 - 1:30 PM - Sahar Shomali, Kouzeh Bakery

1:30 - 1:45 PM - Mark Gavigan, Bread and Flours

1:45 - 2:00 PM - Claudia Carter, Whole Grain Enthusiast

02:00 PM PST. Moderator: George Fohner

2:00 - 2:15 PM - Nan Kohler, Grist & Toll

2:15 - 2:30 PM - Hui. L. Rorabaugh, Whole Grain Enthusiast

2:30 - 2:45 PM - Sarah Owens, Author of James Beard awarded SOURDOUGH

2:45 - 3:00 PM - Rashida Holmes, Bridgetown Roti

03:00 PM PST. Moderator: Saarah Kuzay

3:00 - 3:15 PM - Heather Zikas, Tahoe Bread Company

3:15 - 3:30 PM - Dan Gildor, Marina Bay Bakery

3:30 - 3:45 PM - Heather Fenney, Village Market Place

3:45 - 4:00 PM - Bob Klein, Community Grains

04:00 PM PST. Moderator: Leyna Lightman

4:00 - 4:15 PM - Zion Taddese, Queen Sheba Ethiopian Cuisine, Chef and Farmer


Whole Food’s California Quinoa Salad

Have you ever tried Whole Food’s California Quinoa Salad? I’ve tried it a few times and I finally got around to make it at home. And to my surprise, the homemade version is so much better.

Now I love copycat recipes because you gain full control of what’s in your dish, and you can cherry pick some of the ingredients to your preferences. So for me, I added extra mangos and extra coconut because the tropical twist in this is just amazing!

There’s also tons of other fun goodies in this salad – from the raisins to the edamame and the tangy balsamic-lime dressing. Yes, it’s definitely a party flavor with every bite!

Plus, this is incredibly healthy and nutritious, and certainly bikini-friendly. You can’t beat that!


California Whole-Grain Supplier Expands to Online Market - Recipes

That’s the fun title of the newest cookbook (Andrews McMeel) by the ever prolific New York cooking instructor, Rick Rogers, of which I recently received a review copy.

But it might also very well be a mantra we would all shout happily from the rafters.

Come on, say it with me now: I. LOVE. Meatballs.

If that doesn’t put a big smile on your face, I don’t know what will.

Rogers circles the globe with is recipes for meatballs in this book. You’ll find everything from “Beef Meatballs in Pho” to “Persian Meatballs in Pomegranate and Walnut Sauce” to “Chinese Rice-Crusted Meatballs with Soy-Ginger Dip.”

I gravitated to the “Ziti with Sausage Meatballs and Broccolini.” The meatballs are actually made from ground pork and sweet Italian sausages that have been removed from their casings. Mix in shredded onion, egg, and milk-soaked bread crumbs for added moisture. The results are juicy, fluffy meatballs perfect for nestling in pasta.

Speaking of which, I used fusilli rather than the ziti called for in the recipe. That’s because I received a sample of the new Community Grains fusilli made in small batches from 100 percent whole grain and whole milled hard amber durum wheat grown in California.

If you’re unfamiliar with Community Grains, it was founded by Bob Klein, owner of Oliveto restaurant in Oakland. The restaurant, known for its use of local fish, meat and produce, set out to make its own pasta from local wheat, too.

You can now find the dried pasta at such Bay Area stores as Draeger’s, the Pasta Shop, Bi-Rite and most Northern California Whole Foods. It’s also available online at Market Hall Foods. It retails for $7 for an 8-ounce or 10-ounce box, depending upon the variety.

The fusilli, with its delicate wheat taste and sturdy structure, was the perfect foil for the olive oil-based sauce and the slightly bitter broccolini.

Ziti (or Fusilli) with Sausage Meatballs

For meatballs:

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

12 ounces sweet Italian pork sausage, casings removed

1 small onion, shredded on the large holes of a box grater

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For rest of the pasta dish:

1 pound ziti, rigatoni or fusilli

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic (or 3 cloves spring garlic plus tender shoots), thinly sliced

1/2 teaspoon anchovy paste

1 pound broccolini (about 2 bunches), cut into 2-inch lengths

1 cup canned reduced sodium chicken broth

1/4 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper

1/2 cup (2 ounces) freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

To make the meatballs, position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet.

Soak bread crumbs in the milk in a medium bowl until softened, about 3 minutes. Add sausage, ground pork, onion, egg, salt and pepper and mix well to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes or up to 4 hours.

Using your wet hands rinsed under cold water, shape sausage mixture into 18 equal meatballs. Arrange on the baking sheet. Bake until browned and the meatballs are cooked through, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil over high heat. Add ziti and cook according to the package directions until al dente. Drain well. Return ziti to the pot.

While pasta is cooking, combine oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until garlic is golden but not browned, about 2 minutes. Stir in the anchovy paste. Add broccolini and stir well. Add meatballs, broth, and hot pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the broccolini is tender, about 5 minutes.

Add broccolini mixture to the ziti in the pot. Add Parmesan and mix well. Season with salt. Serve hot with additional Parmesan passed on the side.


Massa Organics California Whole Grain Brown Rice

I met Greg Massa at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza farmers market many years ago. I remember trading some of our heirloom beans for his brown rice, mostly to be nice. I wasn't a huge brown rice fan. Then I made a batch and Massa Organics Brown Rice literally changed the way I eat. Instead of a dry, bland grain that made me feel like I was paying for my sins, this rice was rich and nutty and a perfect pal for our heirloom beans.

You cook it like you would any other brown rice (it takes just under one hour) but the similarities end there. I don't want to oversell this but I really can't see buying any other brown rice.

Greg suggests rinsing the rice with water and checking for debris. Combine one cup rice to two cups water or broth in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Stir, reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer 50 minutes until all the water is absorbed. Let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and serve.

I've also tried Massa Organics brown rice in a clay donabe rice maker (kamado-san) and it was perfect. It requires soaking the rice for several hours so it takes a little planning but the pay off is worth it.

Each bag is 2 pounds (32 ounces).

Recipes and more information on Brown Rice at Rancho Gordo.

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The best way to keep in touch is through our newsletter, which includes product updates, loads of recipes, and more. We send it twice monthly and we never share your information with anyone.

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For customer service of any kind, please call 800/599-8323
or 707/259-1935 or email [email protected]

For the Napa retail store, please call 707/259-1935 x103
Rancho Gordo
1924 Yajome Street, Napa CA 94559

We are offering curbside pickup at our store, Monday through Friday, 10am to 5:30pm. See our Where to Buy section for a product availability list.


Born and Grazed. The best life for our animals makes the best meat for your family. No antibiotics, hormones or growth promotants. Just organic pasture forage, wide open fields, and plenty of sunshine. The best meat direct to your door.

Spend less time at the store & more time with your family. Choose the meats you want at price points to fit every budget. Then relax and enjoy field-to-door delivery right to your home.

Stemple Creek Ranch consistently produces some of the best beef I have ever had. The attention to detail and the pride with which Lisa and Loren run the ranch translates into the outstanding quality and flavor of the meat. You can taste how and where the meat is raised, like a fine wine. There is such depth of flavor, you can taste many different layers and complexities and the quality is outstanding. Thanks for ALL that you do.

Aaron Rocchino, Owner of The Local Butcher Shop, Berkeley, CA

Chez Panisse serves Stemple Creek Ranch beef because it is delicious and because it is grass-fed and finished on certified organic pasture nearby in Tomales, California. The ranch is participating in the Marin Carbon Project which studies carbon sequestration techniques on working ranches in the north Bay Area with the goal of managed pasture land that naturally captures carbon from the atmosphere. We are grateful to be working with Loren and Lisa Poncia who are committed to regenerative ranching and to producing tasty, sustainable meats.

Alice Waters, chef, restaurateur, activist and author, Owner, Chez Panisse

In 20 years of experience in this industry I have never worked with such a consistent grass fed program (probably dealing with 12+ different grass fed lines in my career). Most of them experience different qualities depending on the seasons and location, but Stemple Creek is outstanding year round. With such an extensive variety of proteins in our counters, there is not one that is more local than Stemple Creek beef. Great for the environment, the community and our customers.

Dylan Potgeter, Director of Meat & Seafood Operations, Berkeley Bowl Marketplace, Berkeley, Ca

At Zuni we have a forty year history of partnering with local food producers who are at the forefront of their fields. Loren Poncia and Stemple Creek Ranch are an excellent example in the the beef ranching field, leading with holistic regenerative farming systems that contribute to removal of CO2 from the earth's atmosphere. Everyday we grind fresh chuck and belly from Stemple Creek to make a some of the best grass-fed beef hamburgers around.

Nate Norris, Chef de Cuisine, Zuni Café


Read our latest blog post to discover the benefits of cooking with Organic grains!

RiceSelect®’s Signature Line consists of three gluten-free rice blends:

Texmati® Rice is an aromatic rice that’s a cross between American long-grain white or brown rice and a Basmati to create a unique rice varietal.

Jasmati® is our unique take on Jasmine rice.

Royal Blend® rice is a blend of four rices: Texmati® White, pre-cooked brown, wild and Thai red rice.

Yes, all of our Rice, Couscous, Orzo, and Quinoa varieties are Non-GMO Project Verified and Certified Kosher by Star-K.

Each one of our Signature Line Rice Blends are designed for your signature taste. Click the variety that speaks to you for instructions on how to prepare: Texmati®, Jasmati®, or Royal Blend®.

Handy tip: if you’re cooking our original and organic rice blend, add in 1 minute of cooking time to soften up the grains further.


4 Things You Need to Know before Buying Whole Grain Bread

Bread is a simple food, but buying one that's actually good for you can get complicated. Plenty of loaves that call themselves whole grain are anything but&mdashand even the ones that are telling the truth often get pumped up with unnecessary stuff. Here, four ways to ensure that the bread you're buying is clean:

1. Make sure it's actually whole grain.
Plenty of manufacturers add a touch of whole grain flour to give their breads a wholesome vibe. But just because a bread is tan instead of white or has words like "oatmeal," "multigrain," or even "whole wheat," in its name doesn't necessarily mean anything.

To figure out whether your bread is really a good source of whole grains, check the ingredients list. "Ingredients are listed in order of weight," says registered dietician Jessica Cording. So the closer an ingredient is to the top of the list, the greater percentage of that ingredient is in your bread. First up should always be something with the word "whole" in the name, like "whole wheat." Otherwise, it's just refined flour. (Here are some of the most delicious gluten-free breads you can find.)

2. Steer clear of funky ingredients.

You don't actually need a ton of stuff to make good bread. And yet, the ingredient lists on some sandwich loaves go on and on and on. For instance, manufacturers sometimes like to add caramel coloring to make their bread look browner&mdashand appear healthier&mdashthan it actually is. But nobody needs fake color in their bread, so steer clear.

Other stuff to avoid? Texturizing agents or dough conditioners like phosphates, modified food starches, or azodicarbonamide (yup, that's the yoga mat chemical), which might be thrown in to make bread softer and squishier. Ditto for artificial preservatives (think calcium propionate or sodium benzoate) or stuff that just doesn't seem like it belongs in bread&mdashlike soy flour or soy protein isolate. Natural preservatives, like ascorbic acid, are OK. (Here are 10 food additives that you should never eat.)

3. Be smart about fiber.
Any decent whole grain bread should pack at least 3 g of fiber per slice, says Cording. What's more, that fiber should come from the whole grains themselves. (Need more fiber? Here are 10 foods that help you poop.) Often, breads labeled as high-fiber get their extra roughage from added sources like inulin&mdashan ingredient that isn't necessarily bad, per se. But it's best to get fiber from a range of different foods, and you're more likely to get only one type of fiber when you eat foods that contain added forms of the stuff, Cording says.

4. Look at the sodium and sugar levels.

Sweet, nutty whole grains deliver plenty of flavor on their own, so you don't need a bread that's tricked out with tons of extra sugar or sodium. Look for loaves that have less than 200 mg of sodium and no more than 2 g sugar per slice, says Cording. And always pick breads made with natural sweeteners over highly processed ones&mdashthink honey, molasses, or even evaporated cane juice over high fructose corn syrup. (Here are 56 different names for sugar.)

Look for these at the store: Don't have time to read 9,000 bread labels at the supermarket? Reach for one of our clean picks instead. We like Rudi's Organic Bakery 100% Whole Wheat Bread, Ezekiel 7 Sprouted Grains Bread, Vermont Bread Company Organic Whole Wheat, and Trader Joe's Multigrain Fiber Bread.


Massa Organics is located near Chico in the fertile Sacramento Valley of Northern California and sells organic almonds and medium-grain brown rice direct from the farm.

All our foods are grown using certified organic, regenerative farming practices that treat our crops, land, and people with love and respect.

Ecologists by training, we’re passionate about finding better and healthier ways to farm, so agriculture becomes part of the solution to our environmental crises, not part of the problem.



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