Cooking Matters at the Store returns to Price Rite

One of the four stations at Foodlink's Cooking Matters at the Store event on July 22.

One of the four stations at Foodlink’s Cooking Matters at the Store event on July 22.

Dozens of Rochester shoppers gained tips on how to maintain a healthy diet on a tight budget thanks to another successful Cooking Matters at the Store event July 22 at the Price Rite on Driving Park Avenue.

MVP Health Care partners with Foodlink for the Cooking Matters with the Store program.

 

More than 100 people — some shopping solo, others with children in tow — signed up for the store tour, which featured stops at four learning stations: Produce, Protein, Dairy and Grains. Nutrition educators from Foodlink, Finger Lakes Eat Smart New York and the Cornell Cooperative Extension all provided tips on comparing unit prices, reading Nutrition Facts labels and more. Foodlink partners with MVP Health Care for the event, and participants walk away with a $5 gift card, a free reusable bag and a recipe book.

The next event day will be held in September during Hunger Action Month. Stay tuned for the exact date, time and location. To learn more about the program, visit Foodlink’s website or cookingmatters.org.

The Dairy station at Foodlink's Cooking Matters at the Store event day on July 22.

The Dairy station at Foodlink’s Cooking Matters at the Store event day on July 22.

 

 

Is granola good for us?

Homemade granola.

Homemade granola.


A recent story in the New York Times dug into the common misconceptions about so-called healthy foods in a typical American diet. Times staff used a polling firm to survey hundreds of nutritionists to gauge their opinion on foods that ran the healthy spectrum from quinoa to french fries. They then asked the same questions to everday Americans.

According to the study: “No food elicited a greater difference of opinion between experts and the public than granola bars. About 70 percent of Americans called it healthy, but less than 30 percent of nutritionists did.”

Granola (without the bar) also produced dissimilar reactions with 80 percent of the public saying it was decidedly healthy, while only 47 percent of nutritionists agreed. Other items, such as frozen yogurt, orange juice and American cheese, also produced varying results.

But what’s the deal with granola? We asked a pair of registered dietitians at Foodlink to react to the story and, specifically, share their thoughts on granola.

Alyssa Bennett, Foodlink’s Nutrition Education Manager, said there are healthy and unhealthy versions of many foods. With granola, however, the key is considering the ingredients (especially the amount of sugar) and the portion size. Typically, the serving size for granola is less than that of other cereals. One easy solution … make your own!

“Making homemade granola is a great idea because not only can you control what you put in it (your favorite nuts and dried fruit) but you can make a big batch and save money,” said Bennett, who also provided this homeade granola recipe from the Cooking Matters program. “I love to eat granola with berries or a sliced-up banana with low-fat milk or another form of dairy like low-fat yogurt or almond milk. That’s 3 to 4 food groups (dairy, fruit, grains, some protein with nuts).”

Laura Sugarwala, Foodlink’s Senior Manager of Nutrition & Food Safety Services, agreed that portion size and ingredients play a huge role in making a purchasing decision with granola as more and more manufacturers try to expand their “healthy” options with mixed results.

“The basic ingredients in granola and granola bars — oats and raisins — have fiber and vitamins,” Sugarwala said. “But combining these basic ingredients with corn syrups and other sugars means the food can end up being more like a dessert than a meal. Eating too much of these foods adds extra calories for the day.”

With recent help from the FDA and World Health Organization, the public has gained awareness for the “added sugar” found in many of our favorite foods. We are advised to limit our sugar intake to 50 grams per day.

“Granola is typically 10-18 grams of sugar per serving,’ Sugarwala said, “which means if you choose a serving of granola, remember to limit added sugars in other meals throughout the day.”

Rhinos partner with Foodlink for Charity Night fundraiser

RHINOS

The Rochester Rhinos will welcome Foodlink and other area non-profits and charities to its Sept. 10 Charity Night game on Sept. 10 against New York Red Bulls II.

Fans interested in supporting both the Rhinos and Foodlink can purchase tickets right here. For every $15 ticket sold, $5 goes toward Foodlink and its mission to end hunger.

Foodlink supporters will have a special reserved seating section at Rhinos Stadium for the 5:05 p.m. game. Contact the Rhinos’ Todd Amo (tamo@rhinossoccer.com) for more information.

The Rhinos (7-4-5), the defending USL champions, currently sit in a tie for 5th place in the Eastern Conference standings.

They host FC Montreal this Saturday at 7:05 p.m.

Progress Report: Community Kitchen update (July)

A view inside Foodlink's Community Kitchen in mid-July.

A view inside Foodlink’s Community Kitchen in mid-July.

Our blank canvas is coming to life.

Foodlink’s Community Kitchen began decades ago as a vision of founder Tom Ferraro. In May, we broke ground inside what was, essentially, a 28,000-square-foot empty room at our Mt. Read headquarters. It was an exciting moment, but one still needed a powerful imagination to picture a state-of-the-art commercial kitchen.

Construction crews are hard at work getting Foodlink's kitchen built for the fall.

Construction crews are hard at work getting Foodlink’s kitchen built for the fall.

Today, our blueprint is starting to leap off the page. We have walls. And where we don’t have walls, we have framing that will soon become more walls. Other notable updates since the last progress report include:

– Installation of the HVAC & duct work

– Framing of 90% of the walls

– In-wall plumbing and electrical work is underway

– Dry walling has begun

Coming soon:

– Construction of our coolers (this week)

– Value-Added Processing equipment will be built and shipped to Foodlink (next few weeks)

The fall can’t get here soon enough! Check back with us next month for another update.

Almost all of the framing for the walls of Foodlink's new Community Kitchen is in place.

Almost all of the framing for the walls of Foodlink’s new Community Kitchen is in place.

HVAC materials that will soon be installed in Foodlink's Community Kitchen.

HVAC materials that will soon be installed in Foodlink’s Community Kitchen.

Foodlink expects to triple its meal production capacity once the kitchen is up and running.

Foodlink expects to triple its meal production capacity once the kitchen is up and running.

City farm stand schedule begins

farmstandsignJuly marks the start of farm stand season for the 10 stands that Foodlink assists with to provide greater access to fresh produce for city residents. The schedule runs from July 5 through October. Fruits and vegetables can be purchased at affordable prices via cash, debit or EBT.

Here’s the schedule:

TUESDAYS

Site Address Time
441 Minstries 441 Parsells Ave. 3 – 7 p.m.
Bridges to Wellness 700 North St. 4 – 6 p.m.

WEDNESDAYS

Site Address Time
Aenon Baptist Church 175 Genesee St. 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Cathedral Community Church 296 Flower City Park 2:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Project HOPE Conkey Corner Park 4 – 7 p.m.

THURSDAYS

Site Address Time
Mary’s Place 414 Lexington Ave. 1 – 4 p.m.
Humboldt R Center 1045 Atlantic Ave. 2 – 6 p.m.
St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church 350 Chili Ave. 4 – 7 p.m.

SATURDAYS

Site Address Time
St. Mark’s & St. John’s Episcopal Church 1245 Culver Rd. 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Parma Baptist Community Church 4997 W. Ridge Rd. (Spencerport) 2 – 5 p.m.

 

Curbside Market’s new vehicle to debut soon

Our newest Curbside Market vehicle on June 30 at MDesign.

Our newest Curbside Market vehicle on June 30 at MDesign.

 A few of us at Foodlink stopped by MDesign on June 30 for a peek at the progress of our newest Curbside Market vehicle, slated to hit the road later this month.

During our first visit on June 20, the truck was more or less an empty shell, four wheels and a steering wheel (and other important car parts, of course). During yesterday’s visit, we got to see the generator, the refrigerator and some of the shelving racks installed.

Curbside’s summer schedule begins next week. Stay tuned for more updates about our new truck!

A view of the new Curbside truck, looking out the back.

A view of the new Curbside truck, looking out the back.

Another view of the new Curbside truck, from the other direction.

Another view of the new Curbside truck, from the other direction.

 

Thanks to MDesign on Norman Street for all your hard work!

Thanks to MDesign on Norman Street for all your hard work!