Meet Board Member Cheri Greenfield!
Board Member Name: Cheri Greenfield
Number of Years on Our Board: I just completed my first year as a board member.
Recent Board Discussions: I really enjoyed our recent discussion around the values that the Co-op embodies, and the desire to be a welcoming space in the community where folks can find nourishing foods and connections.
What do you think makes our co-op special?
Food is a powerful thing. While one of our basic human needs, it goes far beyond this. Food connects people—we share meals with others in celebration, in grief, in friendship and in love. Food nourishes us, feeds our bodies and souls. For me, it is important to know that my food is grown in a way that honors the process and the growers, reducing toxic chemical use and supporting sustainable agricultural practices that help maintain a healthy Earth and healthy humans. In this area, we have access to so much good food, and I love that the Friendly City Food Co-op helps to join consumers with local food producers. When I shop at the Co-op, I love chatting with staff members, and catching up with folks—it isn’t unusual for me to run into old friends at the Co-op. At our last board retreat, we discussed how the Co-op is in many ways a hub for connections. The Co-op holds a welcoming space within our community, and making sure everyone feels welcome and has access to nourishing food is one of the things I find most valuable and important.
What is a food memory from your childhood?
Food is a way that we share love, and early memories of food can hold a special space. That ice cream cone after a long day of work, or a special dish cooked by someone who loves us—these foods go far beyond the nutrient value to a nourishment much deeper. One of my favorite dishes from my childhood in Michigan are Cornish Pasties, small hand-pies filled with meat, potatoes, and vegetables—similar to an empanada. My dad occasionally brought them home from a local diner in Flint, and I remember them as a special and delicious treat. As an adult, I started making them for my family, and they are one of our favorite meals. They’re a bit of work, but well worth it! Recently, I made gluten and dairy free pasties, and while I include ground venison in my recipe, you could easily replace this with beans or any plant-based protein to make them vegetarian or vegan. Have fun with the fillings—you’re getting to eat pie for dinner!
Share your favorite recipe right now:
1-1/2# ground venison or beef
5-6 small red potatoes, diced
Red wine, optional
1 large or 2 small rutabaga or turnips
½-1 cup peas
2 small onions
3-4 cloves garlic
Fresh herbs, chopped small or pureed: cilantro, dill, parsley, rosemary
Spices to taste: red pepper flakes, Herbs de Provence by Shenadoah Spice Company (I use this in everything), dried rosemary, coriander, salt, black pepper
Sauté onions in olive oil until soft and translucent, then add herbs, spices, and fresh garlic. Increase heat and add wine. Simmer for a minute or two, until the alcohol has cooked off, then lower heat to medium, add venison or beef, and brown. Add root vegetables and peas, decrease heat to low and cover. Cook until vegetables are tender. Set aside and let cool.
Prepare your own favorite pastry recipe, equivalent to a top and bottom crust—or use a prepared crust. Divide pastry dough into small balls, and then use a rolling pin to roll them out into disks about 6-7” in diameter. Fill the bottom portion with the filling, leaving an inch around the outside, fold the top over, and seal the edges—you’ll end up with a half-moon shaped pie. Repeat this with the rest of the pastry dough. Use a fork or a chopstick to prick vent holes in the top of the pies—I like to get creative here and make fun swirls and shapes. Bake the pies on a nonstick baking sheet or parchment paper for 350 for about 45 minutes, give or take depending on your oven and pastry thickness.
Top these with your favorite gravy or sauce—I used a vegan sour cream-based sauce with fresh herbs and garlic, but my dad prefers brown gravy on his. There will be extra filling—we ate our leftovers over rice topped with a fried egg and avocado slices. Yum!