Sunday, June 27, 2010

Central Market "Hands-On" cooking class: Canning 101

I grew up in the midwest with 2 diabetic family members.  Canning and freezing fresh produce was a way of life for us because, in the 50's, sugar-free and low-sodium canned produce didn't exist in the grocery stores.  We always kept a garden and preserved what we didn't consume during the summer, and in August, we rode on a hayrack into the peach orchard and gathered bushels of peaches to can and freeze for winter.
With all that annual activity you would think I could remember more than the basics of canning, but I didn't.  When I saw that Central Market was offering a class on basic canning techniques I signed up, and took my two youngest daughters.  
Over the years of living near a wonderful cooking school I have learned a lot.  I'm delighted that my daughters are interested in cooking and want to expand their skill set whenever possible.  
The class allowed participants to prepare 4 types of preserves:  pickled watermelon rinds, peach chutney, strawberry-lemon preserves, and blueberry jam.  We took turns mixing and cooking the ingredients, then each of us ladled a portion into jars to preserve and take home.  
I'm so enthused about this that I purchased a set of tools and a couple of books.  We intend to do some items that we will not only use, but offer as holiday gifts.  Stay tuned for our first experiments at home!
My daughters, Natalie (L) and Claire 
ladle watermelon rind pickles into jars

finished items (left to right): pickled watermelon rinds,
peach chutney, strawberry-lemon preserves, 
blueberry jam


  1. You have my address, right? LOL

  2. Each Central Market store has its own unique flavor, but all of our locations share an uncommon passion for food. You can locate any one of our stores right .............................
    Holiday Gifts