Preserving our Harvest CONTEST!!

Are you a Pickle Princess?

A Kraut Crusader?

A Dehydrating Diva?

A Canning King?

A Freezing Fanatic?

A Jam Jar Juggler?

We want to get Nova Scotians excited about PRESERVING OUR HARVEST, so we’re holding our first ever contest!

Send us your best canning or preserving story, or a picture that you took that really shows your enthusiasm for preserving the Nova Scotia harvest!  This could be anything from a picture of you canning with all your friends, to a story of how you involve your kids when you ‘put food away’, to a favourite memory you have of using your local food in the middle of winter.  Deadline for entries is Sept 30.

We’ll post them on our blog throughout the summer, and on October 3 we’ll draw from all the names of people who submitted something to us and the lucky winner will win a Fantastic Food-Preservation-Related PRIZE!!

Just e-mail us at preservingtheharvest@ecologyaction.ca with your story or photo – or leave them in the ‘comments’ section below this post –  and you will automatically be entered in the contest.

Here’s a sample story of my own from a few years ago to get ya’ll started….

I woke up early one Thursday morning to cut up cucumbers and zucchini so they could sit in salt during the day when I was at work (the salt draws out the moisture from the cut vegetables and keeps them crunchier once they’re pickled). Once I got home from work, my plan was to spend the entire evening in the kitchen, canning some bread and butter pickles and making venison meatloaf for a friend at work.

At work I was offered some free Blue Bomber tickets for a CFL football game that very evening. (I was living in Winnipeg at the time).   I’m not the biggest football fan, but I’m not one to say no to free tickets so I accepted them, thinking that my husband could find a buddy to take to the game and I could continue my evening pickling plans. So when I got home, I got ready to make my pickles and started boiling the water in the canner. An hour later, after the first batch of pickles had been canned and I was into mixing up the venison meatloaf, my husband came to me and said he couldn’t find anybody to go with him to the game. The onus was on ME to accompany him to the damn football game. At this point, kickoff was about an hour and 15 minutes away. No problem, right?

At about this time I checked my e-mail. There was a new message from the farmers from our CSA saying that there were extra FREE CUCUMBERS available for pick-up a couple of blocks away on a first come, first serve basis. My mind raced… If I could get Jeff to run over and pick up a couple more pounds of cukes, I could get the meatloaf in the oven in the meantime, and then when I got the cucumbers from Jeff, I’d cut them into slices and get them soaking in salt by the time the meatloaf was ready to come out of the oven in time to go to the football game, and then I could can them when we came home from the game! I could make it all work! We might miss the beginning of the game, but it would all work out!

For some reason my dear husband agreed to this plan and he ran off to fetch the free cukes. He must really love me. Or maybe he just loves pickles. I don’t know.

To make everything more unmanageable, I decided that I didn’t want to make sweet bread and butter pickles from this new batch of cucumbers – I wanted sour dill pickle rounds even though I had no dill. Wasn’t it convenient that we would walk by a large supermarket on our way to the football stadium? It certainly was a strange feeling to walk into the game with huge fronds of dill erupting from my purse – I got my share of heckling from the drunken football fans when they caught a glimpse of it, but I felt quite vindicated when the Bombers actually won the game, the first win of the season.  I totally chalk that up to the power of dill. Anyway, the Bombers won, the second batch of pickles was successfully processed later that night and EVERYTHING WORKED OUT.

The moral of the story – pickles wait for no man.  When it’s cuke season, you gotta work around the cukes!

Yours in Food,

Alison

8 thoughts on “Preserving our Harvest CONTEST!!

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    • Hi Stephanie,

      Because it’s a draw, we’re only accepting one official entry per person. However, if you want to share multiple stories and photos, we’re happy to have them.

      Cheers,
      Marla

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  6. Okay, I love to preserve, and I usually do my canning with a hot water immersion bath. Last year, I decided I’d try the pressure canner that was left in my house from when we moved in — it was probably very old, but seemed to be in fair condition.
    I bottled my tomato sauce, closed up the lid, set the timer and watched the pressure gauge. All seemed good.
    I went upstairs to nurse the baby and put her down for bed, and suddenly heard a terrible noise. I ran downstairs and could see nothing but steam/smoke. The lid had blown off the canner and with the force, ripped the vent out of the wall (it was dangling). Jars were broken and sauce was everywhere (of course, I also have white cupboards). Then, I had to make a quick call to my husband who was on his way home, “Hi hon, I need to tell you something…”
    Thank goodness no one was hurt and I’ve since bought a new canner with a more secure locking mechanism. I’ll soon try it out.

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