Category Archives: News

National Farmers Market Week 2014: August 3-9

National Farmers Market Week 2014 Salud de Paloma

As a nation of immigrants, we have many rich and complex influences woven into the history of our country. Foods we eat, holidays we celebrate, how we create goods or perform services—these are all things that are shaped by the cultural identities of our families and the communities around us. For many communities, farmers markets are playing a pivotal role in maintaining and enabling these cultural ties.

Click here to read more on the USDA’s website.

Salud de Paloma was founded by an immigrant. Our founder, Rosa Rios Valdez, was born in the city of Guanajuato, Mexico, ands she was raised in Central Texas. Our extra virgin olive oil is a tribute to Rosa’s mother who loved her family and good food. So it’s only natural that the first place we sold our Texas-produced extra virgin olive oil was at the HOPE Farmers Market in East Austin, dedicated to engaging the community in activating culturally significant spaces in East Austin while supporting a regional food system, celebrating local culture and increasing awareness of and access to healthy food. Read More →

Healthy 4th of July Recipes with Olive Oil

Healthy 4th of July Recipes Using Salud de Paloma Extra Virgin Olive OilThomas Jefferson, a founding father of the United States and principal author of the Declaration of Independence, had a great love for olive trees. During a three-month journey throughout the Mediterranean region in the 1780s, he proclaimed the olive tree to to be the “most interesting plant in existence” that was “surely the richest gift of heaven.” He went on to say that the olive tree “contributes the most to the happiness of mankind.”

If you’re cooking at home this 4th of July, we’ve found some fantastically unique and healthy recipes to celebrate our day of independence. If you’re going out to a party or a barbecue, here are some tips from Time Magazine on how to enjoy the holiday food without paying for it later:

  • Practice portion control: There are a variety of strategies for cutting back at the grill. For example, eat 1/4-lb. burgers (made with extra-lean ground sirloin) instead of 1/3- or 1/2-lb. patties, or split a steak with your friend.
  • Load up on grilled veggies: Fill half your plate with veggies so as to avoid overdoing it on the higher-calorie options. The fiber will help to fill you and if you want seconds, be sure to fill your plate the same way.
  • Don’t skip meals to try to “save” calories for later: this will lead to overeating and lead you to make poor choices due to hunger and low blood sugar.

Cooking at Home? Healthy Recipes: Read More →

Texas Olive Oil Inspired by a Mother's Legacy

Happy Mother's DayMother’s Day in the United States is an annual holiday celebrated on the second Sunday in May. Mother’s Day recognizes mothers, motherhood and maternal bonds in general, as well the positive contributions that they make to society.

In Mexico, Mother’s Day was first imported from United States in 1922. Today “Día de las Madres” is a holiday celebrated annually on May 10 in Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Belize. In Bolivia, Mother’s Day is celebrated on May 27, on the date of a battle in which women participated.

At Salud de Paloma, we honor motherhood every day of the year. Our Texas produced extra virgin olive oil was inspired as a tribute to our founder’s mother, Helen. In fact, it was named after her.

“My mother, Elena Ríos, sang like a dove…like a paloma. She inspired me to explore new horizons and to work in creating stronger families and communities,” says Rosa Ríos Valdez, co-founder and president of Salud de Paloma.

Happy Mother’s Day to mothers all around the world! Whether you’re still on this earth or now live in our memories, thank you for all you’ve inspired us to do.

Story of My Mother

by Rosa Rios Valdez

 Mother’s Day in the United States is an annual holiday celebrated on the second Sunday in May. Mother’s Day recognizes mothers, motherhood and maternal bonds in general, as well the positive contributions that they make to society.  In Mexico, Mother’s Day was first imported from United States in 1922. Today “Día de las Madres” is a holiday celebrated annually on May 10 in Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Belize. In Bolivia, Mother’s Day is celebrated on May 27, on the date of a battle in which women participated.  At Salud de Paloma, we honor motherhood every day of the year. Our Texas produced extra virgin olive oil was inspired as a tribute to our founder’s mother, Helen. In fact, it was named after her.   “My mother, Elena Ríos, sang like a dove…like a paloma. She inspired me to explore new horizons and to work in creating stronger families and communities,” says Rosa Ríos Valdez, co-founder and president of Salud de Paloma.   Story of My Mother by Rosa Rios Valdez  Helen was raised in South Texas and only finished 9th grade. She married and moved to Mexico. Five years later my mother and father left Mexico to return to the United States with three young children, in search of a better future. Every day my father would go to work as a Bracero in the vegetable field.  In 1958, with my mother’s help, my father got a job at Ol’Bossy Dairy in central Texas. The dairy provided employee housing and the promise to help my father become a permanent U.S. resident. My mother dreaded that one day my father would be deported to Mexico.    Being fluent in English and Spanish, she would sit at the kitchen table preparing my Dad’s residency application and soliciting reference letters about his good character.  Almost a year later, after many written appeals, my father got his permanent U.S. residency.    We did not own a car. One fall morning, my mother dressed my 8-year-old brother for school.  She put a hand written note into his shirt pocket and instructed him to get on the yellow school bus that stopped at our home. His instructions were to get off the bus with the younger children and to go to the school office and give someone the note.    The note said: Please enroll my son in your school.   I remember, that same morning the school principal drove my brother home. He spoke with my mother with great respect, and the next day my brother and sister were both enrolled in first grade at Jefferson Elementary.  On another occasion, it was a crisp spring morning and after playing outside, I ran toward the front door and I found a hobo sitting on the porch. He had gotten off a nearby railroad boxcar and had walked to our home to ask for food. His face and hands were washed and he was sitting at a make shift table eating my breakfast. I didn’t understand why my mother would help dirty strangers.    Year after year, through word of mouth, people would drive from several small towns out to our farmhouse to ask my mother for help.   I remember seeing her sit alone at our family kitchen table working for others. She would read letters written in English, and she would prepare the appropriate responses. She would help people with job applications, social security, driver’s license and welfare applications. From the time I was a little girl until many years after I had finished collage, I watched Helen Rios take on the work of improving people’s lives.    Today, I sit in front of my laptop late into the evenings and into the wee hours, writing letters of recommendation for job candidates, white papers that advocate for the rural poor, grant applications to benefit underserved markets, and proposals to form statewide coalitions.  My mentor, Helen Rios passed away 24 years ago. The values at my work, BCL of Texas, are to lead, inspire and innovate.    Every day through my work at BCL of Texas, the parent nonprofit of Salud de Paloma, I experience Helen’s sense of community and determination to improve people’s lives.   I am my mother’s legacy.Helen was raised in South Texas and only finished 9th grade. She married and moved to Mexico. Five years later my mother and father left Mexico to return to the United States with three young children, in search of a better future. Every day my father would go to work as a Bracero in the vegetable field.

In 1958, with my mother’s help, my father got a job at Ol’Bossy Dairy in central Texas. The dairy provided employee housing and the promise to help my father become a permanent U.S. resident. My mother dreaded that one day my father would be deported to Mexico. Read More →