in the kitchen

Behind the Scenes at the Mill and Orca Heritage Bean Salad

Orca Heritage Beans Go Gingham

This is behind the scenes at the mill but not just any mill – it’s Bob’s Red Mill! And, yes, there really is a Bob. He couldn’t be any nicer and Bob, along with his wife, started Bob’s Red Mill when they retired years ago. It actually began as a little store – until a fire burned the store to the ground. After that fire, Bob and Charlee decided to turn their little red store into a business and that’s how “Bob’s Red Mill” got its start.

Bob's Red Mill Tour with Go Gingham

Trust, honesty, and integrity are the guiding principles of their company. They produce whole grain foods – what I like to call real food – and sell a product that provides better nutrition for all of us – the customers. Bob also gave his company to his employees – another example of what type of person he is.

It was a fun filled behind the scenes tour, with several Portland area bloggers. We got to see the stones that are used to grind their grains and wheat. We also got to meet and say hello to the folks who work there.

Bob's Red Mill Tour Go Gingham

Their company is good to the earth by being good stewards but also by reusing and recycling all of their shipping containers. They purchase only non-GMO grains from “identity preserved” non-GMO seed. They are also enrolled in the Non-GMO Project.

Orca Heritage Beans from Go Gingham

Bob’s Red Mill products can be purchased online but if you’re ever in the Portland area, you have to go to the store. We’re lucky enough to live close by and stock up whenever we need to. What do we buy? Whole wheat flour, brown rice, oats and dried beans – in 25lb bags! We also like their popcorn, unsweetened coconut, and cornmeal. I keep the flour, brown rice, and oats in our freezer. (Here’s how our freezer gets used.)

Anyone can visit the Bob’s Red Mill store – and they have a tasty restaurant there, too. You can also take a tour of the mill itself. (Details about mill tours are here.)

Bob’s Red Mill is sold at lots of grocery stores but check in the bulk bin section to see if your favorite Bob’s Red Mill product is located there too. I like to support sustainable, non-gmo, real food companies with our food dollars. Yes, Bob’s Red Mill is local to us but I see their products everywhere – and you can order online.

Orca Heritage Bean Salad – courtesy of Bob’s Red Mill and used with permission. Image in recipe from Bob’s Red Mill.

Orca Heritage Bean Salad
Recipe Type: Salad
Cuisine: American
Author: [url href=”” target=”_blank” title=”Bob’s Red Mill is here”]Bob’s Red Mill[/url]
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6
These beans are easy to cook and make a tasty addition to this salad – or any recipe that calls for cooked beans.
  • 1 cup Bob’s Red Mill Orca Heritage beans
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 ½ cup chopped mango (1 medium)
  • ½ cup peeled and chopped navel orange (1 small)
  • 2 Tbsp minced jalapeno (1 medium)
  • 2 tsp lime zest (from 1 lime)
  • ¼ cup fresh lime juice (from 1 lime)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 cup chopped avocado (1 medium)
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh mint
  1. Sort and rinse Bob’s Red Mill Orca Beans and place in a medium pot with water.
  2. Cover pot and bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until soft, about 60 minutes.
  4. Drain well and rinse thoroughly with cold water and let cool completely.
  5. In a large bowl, combine cooked, rinsed and cooled Bob’s Red Mill Orca Beans.
  6. Add mango, orange, jalapeno, lime zest and juice, salt, pepper and cumin.
  7. Mix well.
  8. Gently fold in avocado and mint. Serve immediately or chilled.
Serve at room temperature or refrigerate and serve chilled. Store in air tight container in the refrigerator.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this behind the scenes tour at the old mill. A big thank you to Bob’s Red Mill for taking us on the tour and spending the day with us! Special thanks to Fabiola of Not Just Baked for organizing it!

Are Bob’s Red Mill products available where you live? What’s your favorite Bob’s Red Mill product to buy?

Go Gingham related links:

Why I cook with dried beans – complete with money saving chart!
Very easy and tasty white bean dip
How to cook with dried beans – easy and you can use a slow-cooker
Vegetarian chili made with dried beans – of course!
Corn and black bean salad – made with dried beans
Spicy hummus – yes, spicy and made from dried beans!

Since we’re talking about sustainable, non-gmo, real food companies, my friends at Earthbound Farm and I are co-hosting a Twitter Party! The party is Thursday March 26, 2015 from 5pm to 6pm PST. If you’re on Twitter, you can follow me there – Go Gingham – and join in on the Twitter Party fun! We’ll be sharing recipes and ideas to get us from winter time comfort food to lighter meals that celebrate the arrival of spring! Earthbound Farm Twitter Parties have the best prizes, too. Join us and embrace new palate ideas at our #SpringMixItUp Twitter Party!

3 thoughts on “Behind the Scenes at the Mill and Orca Heritage Bean Salad

    1. Kris, it was fun and they do have really good products. I know we live in a food bubble here – Bob’s Red Mill store is where I shop! It’s great. I just ran out of oats and am thinking next time, I’ll get the 50lb bag! I may need my husband to heave-ho it though!! 🙂


      1. We have a food bubble of our own. Because of our proximity to Lake Michigan, we are in an mini-eco-climate (not sure if that’s the right term) and many produce items grow well here–blueberries, cherries, apples, asparagus, to name a few (and asparagus season is approaching soon). Lucky for me, my hubby loves to take our kids to the U-pick orchards around here, and I reap the benefits.


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