Chicago Market, a community co-op

Chicago Market will change the way you shop for groceries. We’re building a community around local, sustainable food. Not an Owner of our food co-op yet?



Organization is critical to making this dream grocery store become a reality. Curious how we’ve created our teams and work groups? Check out this blog post from Karen Jacobs, head of our Organizational Development team, for more detailed information:

Stay up-to-date on the latest Chicago Market news by reading the minutes of our monthly Board of Directors meetings. You’ll find them posted on our blog, by the last day of each month.

Have you RSVP’d to the Owners’ Meeting?

You won’t want to miss this. This is your chance, as a Chicago Market Owner, to exercise your democratic power. You’ll vote on Chicago Market’s inaugural bylaws, you’ll hear updates from our teams, and you’ll be the first to learn about exciting new initiatives we have planned this fall and winter. The meeting is from 3-5 p.m. Oct. 18 at the Ravenswood Event Center.

Corn chowder recipe

Local, Seasonal Cooking

You asked for more local, seasonal recipes. Here’s a great one for Chicago Corn Chowder from Owner Jean Farley Brown:


Chicago Chowder
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
3 medium potatoes, scrubbed and cubed
2 carrots, scrubbed and chopped
1 small zucchini, scrubbed and cubed
1 medium sweet red pepper, roasted, seeded and chopped
10 tablespoons butter
3 cloves garlic
1 1/2 tablespoons cumin
9 tablespoons flour
4 cups milk
4 cups corn stock (recipe follows*), or vegetable stock
2 cups corn (fresh or frozen)
Garnish (optional)
Bacon crumbles and fresh chives

1. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter and sauté onion, potato, carrot just until fork-tender.
2. Add garlic and zucchini and sauté 3 minutes more. Remove vegetables from heat.
3. In a heavy soup pot, melt 1 stick of butter over low heat. Add the flour slowly while whisking, until it’s completely combined.
4. Turn up the heat just a bit and add the milk, slowly pouring it in as you whisk. Add cumin.
5. Let this mixture simmer, whisking occasionally, until it begins to thicken.
6. Add your vegetables and stock. Salt and pepper to your taste. Simmer for at least 30 minutes.
7. Add corn. (If using fresh, cook about 5 minutes. Don’t overcook it! If using frozen, drop it in and turn off the pot.)
8. Garnish each serving with crumbled bacon, or fresh chives or scallions, or red pepper flakes. Or all of the above.

Corn Stock*
1 white onion, peeled and quartered
5 corn cobs (kernels removed)
Place onion, corn cobs, and 2 quarts water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat and immediately reduce to a simmer. Let simmer for 45 minutes.
Remove from heat.


Kathy Churay became a Chicago Market Owner in August of last year, and she became a Chicago Market Volunteer just two weeks later.

“As soon as I signed up, I asked myself, 'What am I going to do to help make this happen?'" she says. But it needed to be something she could do from home, balancing a busy job and travel schedule. "I'm not an

Kathy Churay

out-front kind of person," she says, but she quickly became our behind-the-scenes data-entry superstar. Her efficient, generous and reliable efforts have been keeping our database current and organized for more than a year now.

Kathy grew up in the Detroit area, but she found her first co-op during college, in Kalamazoo. "It was the coolest thing, grassroots and responsible," she recalls. She moved to Chicago in 2005, fell in love with the city, and has been looking for her new co-op "home" ever since -- we're so thrilled that she found Chicago Market! "One thing that sold me was the payment schedule," she notes. "I didn't have $250 ready, but being able to stretch across 10 payments made it really easy to join."

She's spent 30 years as a legal secretary, but she's also an author, with a Masters in Fiction Writing and her first novel in progress. She lives in the Lincoln Square area and loves her two cats, Shadow and Willow. An avid reader, she finds it hard to limit her book recommendations down to just one but currently she's a big fan of the Outlander series.

Kathy's favorite quote? "Well, I'll just say that for myself, if you wanna make something happen, you gotta get in there and do it, find the place where you fit. Even if it's a small thing, it's a key thing, and it really contributes."

We love that attitude, and we're grateful every day for her contributions, which make what so many other volunteers do so much easier. Thanks, Kathy!

And if you too 'wanna make something happen' and be a bigger part of our co-op community, send us a note at [email protected]! Out front or behind the scenes, we'll find a place for you.