Late last year I attended an Edible Institute conference in Iowa City to mingle with other creators, publishers & activists in the real food movement. While I don’t consider myself an ostentatious, outspoken activist, I prefer to let my dollars do the talking by supporting companies, small or large that focus on sustainability & ethical sourcing.

It was at this Edible conference that I first heard of Frontier Co-op. Well, I take that back. I had definitely heard of them before but I honestly didn’t know much more beyond seeing their name on a bottle of vanilla or cinnamon occasionally. In the brief, 5-minute introduction I was given to Frontier Co-op last year, I immediately knew – this was a company I wanted to form a relationship with. Inspired by their mission & business model of working directly with farmers, testing in-house for quality, offering the highest quality products to consumers & finally, giving back to farmers & their communities, I eagerly set my sights on them.

In the real food community, we put a lot of emphasis on animal sourcing & farm sustainability. We want grass fed, organic, pasture raised, non-GMO fed, free range animal products. We get excited over heirloom, small farm produced, pesticide free fruits & veggies. But thinking about organic, sustainable, responsibly sourced products is something that often gets lost when we find ourselves in the spice aisle choosing between the $12 chili powder & the $2 chili powder. What has happened between those two bottles that makes such a huge difference? What has gone into the sourcing, production & treatment of the workers who’ve harvested that spice? Honestly, it’s something I hadn’t put much thought into until recently. You see, the truth is, there are a lot of hands that go into the making of that tiny amount of spice you buy on your grocery store shelves.

When I was introduced to Frontier Co-op, I was immediately struck with the story they told of buying a pepper mill for a community in India where the workers could grind their own peppercorns. But more than that, the Co-op encouraged the community to grind pepper for any other spice company they might like to work with. They wanted to make sure this community could continue to produce ground pepper while being able to sell to any company they could.

They also talked about the specific region in Vietnam, where they source their cinnamon, that has a 5% higher oil content (more than twice that of average cinnamon). To give back to that community they provided the region with books, desks, beds & room & board so the children from these remote farming communities could attend a regional school while their parents made living wages.

I’ve talked before about my enthusiasm for companies that make this type of sustainability a priority. This is the kind of stuff that gets me excited. These are the companies I love to share with you, my readers.

When Frontier Co-op asked me to chat with them about how I cook with purpose in our home, I couldn’t help but think of their entire mission & how much it resonated with me, not only as a woman, but also a mother: Nourish people and planet. Always be fair.

I love when I get to use my dollars to vote for a company that I know has a mission of empowerment, sustainability & community building; I love knowing I can do this in a way I might have previously overlooked. I feel this innate need to educate our children on a global level. While we can’t travel with them to far away countries, we can educate them as much as possible that truly, their food does not come from a grocery store. Their food has sometimes traveled long distances & the people who’ve made these products possible for us, also deserve the same opportunities to education, working wages, community building & clean water as we have.

Make no mistake – we live a privileged life. But if I can impart any sense of global awareness on my children, I hope at the very least I can educate them on choosing quality over quantity & that cheap food often comes at a much higher price than they could ever imagine. Using our dollars to support responsible companies, choosing food that is the best quality we can afford & making sure our plates are filled with as many whole foods as possible. That is how we cook with purpose in our home.

I am so excited to share this fresh, spring recipe with you! I knew I wanted to create something light, bright & fresh that would be the perfect side dish for any upcoming event from Mother’s Day to Memorial Day to a summer BBQ! I was especially excited to use the organic Flat Leaf Parsley. Frontier Co-op Parsley has a fuller flavor than its curly-leaved cousin. And because they ensure the plants are moved quickly from the field to the drying facility, you get the richest, freshest-tasting parsley possible. The bright, bold color is completely natural, without any additives, which is all due to the sourcing methods!

How to prepare my purple potato salad with herbed vinaigrette

  • PREPARATION TIME: 20 mins
  • COOK TIME: 15 mins
  • TOTAL TIME: 35 mins
  • AUTHOR: Trisha
  • SERVES: 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • 1.5 lbs purple potatoes, washed & halved or quartered for smaller pieces
  • ½ cup Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice (approx. 1 lemon)
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Mustard
  • 1 Tablespoon Shallots, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Frontier Co-op dried Flat Leaf Parsley
  • 2 teaspoons Frontier Co-op dried Tarragon
  • ½ teaspoon Frontier Co-op dried Chives
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • Optional topping: fresh lemon zest

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place washed & halved potatoes in a medium sized pot. Cover with water & boil until a knife will go through them easily, approx.12-15 minutes.
  2. While potatoes are boiling, mix the herbed vinaigrette together in a dish.
  3. Add the oil, mustard & dried herbs into a dish & stir until well combined. Season to taste with sea salt.
  4. Once potatoes are finished boiling, remove from heat & rinse under cold water.
  5. Place potatoes in a large bowl & top with herbed vinaigrette. Stir with a spatula until the potatoes are well covered & then, feel free to add more salt to taste.
  6. Top with fresh lemon zest before serving cold.
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