- Author: Cari Curtis, UCCE Master Food Preserver of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties
- Author: Dayna Ravalin, UCCE Master Food Preserver Program Coordinator
Spring has arrived! As the days & nights grow warmer, more colors appear in fruit trees and flowers. For UCCE Master Food Preservers, the onset of Spring ignites visions of gardens and re-stocked shelves of freshly preserved foods.
Preserving foods has been an important part of many kitchens for years. With the onset of the pandemic, more people have discovered the joy of preserving their own food. It's both satisfying and comforting to have the knowledge and the ambition to turn fresh foods into preserved foods whether it be through canning, dehydration, freezing or smoking. The process completes all our senses from start to finish. It is important to remember preserving foods safely is the foundation of what a UCCE Master Food Preserver teaches. Preserving foods using the right equipment, tested recipes and procedures, and fresh foods will help you achieve success and decrease the chance of foodborne illness! Those of you who have been preserving for years, know what I'm talking about. For those of you who have only had minimal experience or none, but you want to start, I have an opportunity just for you!
Learning how to preserve foods safely is key to your success. The UCCE Master Food Preserver Program is launching a new project called “Ask a Master Food Preserver”. Every 4th Saturday of the month @ 10AM beginning April 24, certified Master Food Preservers will host a live 30-minute Zoom meeting with the purpose of guiding you through the safe steps of preservation and answer any questions you may have.
The first session is called “Getting Started with Canning Basics”. This is a great introduction or refresher (for those of you who may have some canning experience) incorporating safe canning practices, needed equipment and a few recipes! It's online and FREE! Use this link and join us: https://ucanr.zoom.us/j/99190452915?pwd=djZMQ2ZXWWhwTmh3REYwczJoWFlwQT09
The series of topics to be covered are designed to follow the natural progression of preserving as we go through the season. There will be numerous sessions focused on “Preserving Safely” and a series titled “When things go Wrong”. We hope you join us and look forward to helping you achieve success safely with your upcoming preservation projects.