Archive by Author

CoFed Spreading the Word & the Love

30 Apr

April 29, 2011

GW students win $10,000 award for campus food co-op in downtown Washington, DC!

High-fives and congratulations to students working hard to realize the dream of a student-run food co-op in downtown Washington, DC – the GW Food Co-Op has won the $10,000 inaugural Knapp Fellowship for Entrepreneurial Service-Learning award!

Read more on the CoFed blog!

HOW-TO Make Kombucha

29 Apr

originally posted on What Tomorrow Left Behind 

Part I: Growing your own SCOBY

Kombucha, is an effervescent and tangy health drink made from fermenting sweetened tea, and something I like to drink just about everyday. My mom and I joke that we drink it during “cocktail hour” since we like to enjoy a glass before dinner. Kombucha contains multiple species of yeast and bacteria, as well as the organic acids, active enzymes, amino acids, and polyphenols produced by these microbes.

Go here to learn more about Kombucha, or pick up a copy of Sandor Katz’s Wild Fermentation to learn about kombucha, other fermented foods, and their health benefits.

To make kombucha you only need two things, sweetened tea and a SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast), AKA “mother,” or “mushroom.” Kombucha mothers are pretty easy to find these days if your friends are making kombucha (I killed my first mother I grew and and my friend Melissa just gave me one of her mothers “daughters” to start a new batch with) but if your friends haven’t jumped on the kombucha wagon yet you have two options for obtaining a SCOBY, 1) you buy one off craigslist for anywhere from $15-35 or 2) you grow your own for less than $4.

What you need to grow your own scoby:

  • 1 bottle of Organic, Raw Kombucha
  • 1 glass jar or bowl
  • 1 kitchen towel
  • 1 rubber-band
  • 1 cup of room temperature sweetened tea

You can buy the kombucha at just about any health food store. If you can’t find it near you though, you can buy a bottle of it online. I’ve read that it is important to make sure it’s organic, raw, and unflavored with juice, meaning you just want the plain, original beverage. However, the daughter I am now in possession of comes from a mother Melissa grew using a bottle of Triology, which does have juice, and I tasted some of Melissa’s brew she made with it, it was good. So, if you can’t get unflavored don’t worry about it.

The sweetened tea can be as simple as a cup of black or green tea, sweetened with a tablespoon of sugar. I used Yogi Green Tea Kombucha and a tablespoon of white sugar.

Pour the kombucha and room temp sweetened tea into your bowl or jar.

Cover it with a towel so it can breathe but be protected from insects and other contaminants and let it sit. Over time, a SCOBY will start to form on top of the liquid. First it will appear as a thin film, then slowly it will thicken up. Once it is about 1/4 inch thick it is ready. It takes about 3 weeks to grow a SCOBY that is around 1/4-1/3 inch thick, it really depends on the temperature of the room you are trying to grow the SCOBY in. For example, in the summer it might only take 2 weeks. Above is a picture of mine sitting on top of my microwave in my kitchen.

Part II: Home Brew

So you’ve got your SCOBY, what now? We brew kombucha!


15 cups water

1 cup sugar

4 tea bags

  1. Bring water to a boil
  2. Remove from heat, stir in sugar, add tea bags and steep, covered, until room temperature
  3. Put in glass jar and cover (must be breathable, I use cheese cloth and a rubber band)
  4. Set in warm place for 2-3 weeks.
  5. Taste it, let it sit until it taste good to you, the amount of time really depends on how warm it is where you are keeping it, the warmer the faster is ferments, and how tangy you like it.

We’re doing it!!

28 Apr

Dear Beloved Supporters of the Food Co-op,

First thank you times 1 million for all of your undying support in the idea of having a cooperative cafe on campus. All of you have big hearts, creative minds, and unparalleled passion for food sovereignty. If you haven’t read GWToday yet, read it here and you will learn that our cooperative initiative has been awarded $10,000 through the Steven and Diane Knapp Fellowship. This is huge, just sayin. Basically, this humble idea of ours has been recognized by GW as a promising and desirable addition to campus and for that we must be thankful! and also give ourselves a huge pat on the back for being awesome.

So much has happened since January when we started this journey and it will continue to grow, change, and evolve in the coming months. If any of you are going to be here over the summer and would like to get in on some of the negotiations for space, organizational structure, suppliers, inventories, fundraising–we’ll take any spare time you have. If not, let us know if you would like to do any work remotely! If nothing else, keep checking the blog for updates and we look forward to all of your continued support in the Fall.

Peace, Love & Veggies

-Melissa, Ellie and Erin

P.S. Photo cred to Jessica McConnell Burt!! We

Get it When it’s Raw!

28 Apr

Make your own raw snacks! Here are some recipes and nutritional information about raw snacks provided by Sara Eddison, Nutrition Consultant from A Stones Throw to Health.

Raw snacks and smoothies contain HUGE amounts of ENZYMES!

The enzymes in berries, stone-fruits, leafy greens, walnuts, cashews, flax seed, chia, and more are what helps to restore our body’s enzyme reserves. Cooked foods are VOID of enzymes, so while they are tasty and full of macronutrients and minerals, there are no enzymes there.

Certain foods not only lack enzymes but they deplete the body’s reserves.

  • Refined flours and sugars
  • white bread, muffins, cereals, bagels
  • Additives, preservatives, fortified foods
  • frozen dinners, prepackaged snacks

Disease and sickness from the common cold to diabetes are caused by the lack or imbalance of  enzymes!

Further Reading:

Raw Energy by Stephanie Tourles (source of many of the mentioned recipes)

Murray, Michael, ND, Pizzorno, Joseph, ND, Pizzorno, Lara, MA Encyclopedia of Healing Foods, NY, Atria Books, 2005.


Eleuthero Root aka “Siberian Ginseng”

Studies have shown it:

  • Reduces the side effects of radiation
  • Used during Chernobyl nuclear disaster
  • Is “adaptogenic”
  • Reduces stress on the body
  • Improve immune health
  • prevents colds, flu, and infection
  • Increases concentration and focus

Use as a tincture, powder, or root in smoothies, oatmeal, juices, tea!

It is a stimulant so be aware ingesting before bed.

Raw Almond Milk

1 cup of raw almonds

2 cups of water

1 tablespoon of honey

pinch of sea salt

  1. Blend the nuts with water, salt, and sweetener on high for 2 minutes.
  2. Strain through nut milk bag or sieve into a bowl.
  3. Pour milk from bowl into liquid storage jar. Shake well before drinking.
  4. Store up to 3 days in a tightly sealed container in the fridge, or freezer for 3 months.

Get your:

  • potassium
  • magnesium
  • iron
  • zinc
  • healthy fat

Beside the freshness factor, making your own means you won’t have to pay extra for additives, preservatives, and fortified vitamins that are synthetics and often unable to be broken down by the body (as is the case with vitamin D2, found in almond, soy, rice, and other packaged milks).

Check the label from Blue Diamond Almond Milk.

Notice anything that doesn’t belong?

Can you say preservatives and additives?

Raw Recipes! 

Chocolate Turtles

Yield 16 pieces.

1/2 cup of raw almond butter

1/2 cup of raw cacao powder

1/4 cup raw honey

16 small pecan halves

  1. Put almond butter, cacao, and honey in large bowl and slowly stir to blend. The dough will become sticky and stiff.
  2. Pinch off pieces of the dough and form small balls that are about walnut size.
  3. Press a pecan half onto the top of each ball. Chill in the fridge for about four hours before eating.
  4. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months or in the fridge for 3 weeks in a tightly sealed container

Get your:

  • •antioxidants
  • •vitamins B, E
  • •calcium
  • •potassium
  • •magnesium
  • •manganese
  • •phosphorous
  • •iron
  • •zinc
  • •sulfur
  • •copper
  • •protein
  • •healthy fat
  • •natural sugars
  • •fiber!

Mexican Chocolate Fudge

Yields 20

1/2 cup raw, unrefined coconut oil

1 cup of raw cacao powder

1/2 cup of almond butter

2 tablespoons raw agave nectar

1 teaspoon of each chili and cayenne

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

pinch of sea salt

  1. Melt coconut oil by placing jar in hot water or by a sunny window.
  2. Place all the ingredient into a large bowl and stir to blend.
  3. Coat the bottom of a 8 inch square pan with coconut oil. Spread fudge mixture, about 1 inch deep.
  4. Cover and freeze for 1 hour or until firm.
  5. Remove of let soften slightly. Cut into 1-2 inch squares.
  6. Store up to 2 weeks in a tightly sealed container in the fridge.

Get your:

  • •antioxidants
  • •calcium
  • •vitamins B, E
  • •potassium
  • •sulfur
  • •magnesium
  • •phosphorous
  • •iron
  • •zinc
  • •copper
  • •protein
  • •healthy fat
  • •natural sugars
  • •fiber!

Vanilla-Walnut “Shortbreads”

2 cups raw walnuts

1 cup unsweetened coconut, finely shredded

1/4 cup raw honey

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

pinch of sea salt

  1. Blend all ingredients until moist cohesive ball forms, about 60 seconds. Scrape into medium bowl.
  2. Scoop out 1 tablespoon of mixture and roll and squeeze it in the palm of your hand until it sticks together.
  3. Roll small pieces of the mixture into small balls (about 1 1/4 inch diameter) and flatten.
  4. Repeat with the rest of mixture.
  5. Store up to 3 weeks in a tightly sealed container in the fridge, or freezer for 3 months.

Get your:

  • •omega-3 fatty
  • acids
  • •vitamins B, E
  • •calcium
  • •potassium
  • •magnesium
  • •manganese
  • •phosphorous
  • •iron
  • •zinc
  • •copper
  • •protein
  • •healthy fat
  • •natural sugars
  • •fiber!

Go-Green Spirulina Balls

Yields 20 clusters

1 cup raw sesame seeds

1/2 cup raw carob powder

1/2 cup of raw honey

3 tablespoons spirulina powder

2 tablespoons bee pollen

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  1. Grind sesame seeds into fine meal.
  2. Mix the ground seeds with remaining ingredients.
  3. Use your hands to mix until there is a cohesive ball forming.
  4. Roll small pieces of the mixture into small balls (about 1 1/4 inch diameter).
  5. Chill the balls for about 4 hours to let the flavors meld.
  6. Store up to 2 weeks in a tightly sealed container in the fridge, or freezer for 2 months.

Get your:

  • •beta-carotene
  • •vitamins B and E
  • •potassium
  • •magnesium
  • •phosphorous
  • •manganese
  • •iron
  • •chlorophyll
  • •zinc
  • •copper
  • •healthy fat
  • •natural sugars
  • •fiber!

Earth Day Fair

25 Apr

Melissa and Ellie representing FJA and GW Student Food Cooperative

Raw Cookie Treats were a BIG hit! Thank you Sara!


Cookie Dough


Topsy Turvy

6 Apr

Look, there we are!

Our table was a huge hit at the Topsy Turvy Bus Fair last week! Lot’s of people signed our petition and took our survey! People who stopped by our table got to sample a few different kinds of cookies and taste some  bruschetta with mozzarella and roasted tomato jam.

There were a number of other groups from campus there also, The Food Justice Alliance, The Office of Sustainability, GreenGW, Planet Forward, and Power Shift. DC Bread & Brew also stopped by with some delicious roasted vegetable wraps.

We enjoyed talking with the people from the Topsy Turvy Bus and hearing what they had to say about living sustainably and promoting change. The bus takes multiple trips across the country each year stopping at primarily Asian restaurants to ask for their used cooking oil to power the bus with. They also grow greens and compost in the bus. The bus travels making stops for engagements at schools, community centers, synagogues and churches, and universities to show people that it is possible to live sustainably, it just takes some behavior changes.

The bus was really cool and the people who live on it were really great to chat with. Shout out to the Jewish Farm School and Teva Learning Center for supporting such an endeavor and thank you for coming to GW!!

Huge thanks to GW Hillel and Tzedek for bringing the Topsy Turvy Bus to campus!

To learn more about the Topsy Turvy bus, click here.


5 Apr

Hi All!

Co-Op meeting tonight, 2nd floor Marvin Center on the couches.

Lots of great news and discussion about a potential space!

All who can come we would love to have you!