Saturday, June 6, 2009

Bailey's Buying Club - Ordering is now open for June 12, 2009

Hello Local Eaters,
How's it going eating local food? Have you figured out how to fit Bailey's Local Foods into your weekly routines? Some people mark on their calendar when they will order and when they will pick up.  What percent of your grocery budget do you want to go toward local foods? My goal for last year was 50%.  Percent of grocery budget is different than percent of total food eaten (measured by weighing all the food coming into your house? or how much weight you gain??). It is really easy to invest 50% of the grocery budget into local food if you are a carnivore. Meat and cheese are the pricier items so if your meat and cheese and milk is local (we can sort of assume all milk we buy in Ontario is from Ontario), that could be 25% of your food budget right there, no?  I'm aiming for investing 75% of our grocery money in local food this year.  It almost feels like tithing to me.  I know that the money I spend on local food is going to strengthen my community again and again and again.

Deli Meats
Okay, enough serious talk about finances and percents and tithing. Let's talk about deli meat. Much more exciting! Now, if you're vegetarian or vegan just skip this paragraph.  It is really complicated to get all-local deli meat! I've been working on this for over a year now and it is still tricky. Fortunately, I found the Stemmler brothers who are excellent butchers and are willing to work with me even though I ask annoying questions like "How many miles away is the abattoir?" and "Can you make that without nitrates?"  At my request, they will make us a batch of 72 Mile Natural Beef Deli meat that doesn't have nitrates in it!  They get the beef from the Heleniak family of Norpack Beef near Norwich, ON. The Heleniak family sources beef from many different farmers but this beef they raised themselves without steroids or antibiotics (fed an all-corn diet with no animal by-products). (Did you know that it is considered normal to give beef cattle steroids and antibiotics?)  So, we have the source figured out, the recipe figured out but we need to order a minimum of 50lbs so that it is worth Stemmler's time to make a batch.  20 Mile Black Forest Ham is easier to source because Stemmler's can buy the pork from a small abattoir in St. Jacob's (Reist and Weber) and they insist that the ham needs nitrates in it. Turkey deli meat is the most complicated.  They were making me a local turkey deli meat but I haven't been able to order a big enough batch to make it worth their time. Turkey deli meat is especially expensive because it has to be painstakingly deboned.  Both deli meats we are offering have no msg, no gluten, no allergens. So, the good news is if you love a summer meal of a sandwich with deli meat, tomato and lettuce, this week is your chance to taste the best truly local deli meat. Try it this week so that when we offer it again on June 26, you can plan to stock up on it for the July holiday weekend and the week at the cottage. Both deli meats freeze well to use later.

Stemmler's is also making us All-Beef Hotdogs (nitrate free!) this week. Yes, hotdogs.  The beef is from Norwich.  My family really enjoys cooking these over our back-yard fire.  A hot-dog roast on Sunday afternoon gives me a taste of being at the cottage without the long drive. If you want to see the other great meats and more that Stemmler's sell at their gorgeous store in Heidelberg, stop in for a visit. It is just a 10 minute drive from Waterloo.

Local Food in Jars
I'm putting an order in this week for Erma to make us cases of preserves for this Winter. She's going to make us pickled beets, pickled dilly green beans (my favourite!), pickled cucumbers, chili sauce, salsa, and BBQ Relish. If there is something other local food you'd REALLY like to buy in a jar, send us an email and we'll see if we can do it.

Salad Mixes
Okay, the salad mixes from Soiled Reputations really ARE as good as Antony John claims.  The half pound bag is not cheap but it is packed full of exquisite leaves of the tastiest greens.  They are pre-washed and yet not wet so you are not paying for water - or large stems.  If you put feta and walnuts on top, you may suddenly feel like a gourmet chef.  I was shocked at the price of the salad mixes at first but they really are worth every penny. The Gourmet Mix includes leaves that are a bit spicier than the Bistro Mix.

Grand Opening for Bailey's Local Foods
June 19 will be our "official" Grand Opening at our new site.  We are inviting important and famous people to come: YOU! Maybe we'll invite a mayor or two, as well. Who do you think should be at our Grand Opening? Inviting others to join us for the Grand Opening is a way to spread our joy and excitement of discovering this new way of moving local food into the cities.  Send us an email of who you think we should send a personal invitation to and then also invite that person yourself. We will be sharing stories of local food 3:30-4 PM on the 19th.

Faster Check-out
We will be adding more check-out volunteers to shorten the waiting lines between 3:30 and 5.

Not so sweet
The two white carrots that I tasted last week were not sweet so I'm offering them again with the recommendation that they are best for cooking. I wish I could find other local carrots but no others are available.

Meal Idea
How about burritos with local beans and/or beef, wheat tortillas, cheese, tomatoes, cilantro and not-so-local avocados.

Flour and grains
Oak Manor flours and grains will be available this week. We offer them every other week. This is the place to get your oats for granola or soft whole wheat for shortcake to go with the strawberries that are coming soon.

It's going great
Some of you have asked how things are going with the business. The answer is GREAT!  The second week went WAY more smoothly than the first. Rachael and I are still not able to pay ourselves but we are optimistic that this will be possible soon. Thank you for joining us in this experiment to figure out a new way of getting local food into the cities.  We'd love to see this model spawn babies here in KW and in other cities. I could see five (10?) other churches in KW hosting a local food buying club. Just think of all the people who would be able to walk to pick up their food if there were ten neighbourhood churches hosting buying clubs!

In love with life and local food,
Nina for the folks at Bailey's Local Foods

Is this your first email from us?

You are receiving Nina's messages because you are a member of Bailey's Local Food Buying Club.
If you do not wish to receive Nina's messages in the future, please uncheck the Nina's messages box associated with your email address in Account Settings at

No comments: