Learn to make gifts in the kitchen with UC Master Food Preservers

Nov 16, 2021

Looking for gift ideas that don't cost much? University of California Master Food Preservers, a program of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, will host online workshops showing how to safely make hot holiday beverages, infused vinegar, spiced nuts, meat rubs, cookie mix in a jar and more. Participants may make their own creations as they watch the demonstrations. 

“You can create inexpensive gifts that are made with love for friends and family,” said Wendi Weston, coordinator of the UC Master Food Preservers of Sacramento County.

Gifts from the Kitchen Virtual Workshop will be held 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17. This workshop is hosted by the UC Master Food Preservers of Sacramento County, but they welcome participants from outside the county as well. Register at https://mfp.ucanr.edu/Events/?calitem=499948&g=72758.

“Participants will learn to make flavored tea and the barbecue spice rub during the workshop. It'll be fun and festive,” said Weston, who is planning the series of workshops.

During the two-hour Zoom workshop, the UC Master Food Preserver volunteers will demonstrate how to make cranberry conserve, spiced nuts, infused vinegar and holiday cookies in a jar. They will also share decorating and food safety tips.

After the workshop, the recipe books can be purchased for $10 at https://sacmfp.ucanr.edu. Recipes from past workshops can be downloaded for free at https://sacmfp.ucanr.edu/Monthly_Demonstrations/Recipes.

On Dec. 1, UC Master Food Preserver volunteers of Amador and Calaveras counties will discuss freezing, dehydrating, canning and food safety during an online workshop. Register at https://mfp.ucanr.edu/Events/?calitem=516566.

“We can reduce food waste and save money by preserving food,” said Sue Mosbacher, UC Master Food Preserver Program coordinator.

The UC Master Food Preserver Program extends UC research-based information about home food safety and preservation to the public throughout the year. They are located in 19 counties of California, most recently adding UC Master Food Preserver volunteers in Modoc County, where they are offering pressure canner testing.

For 2022, the UC Master Food Preservers of Sacramento County are planning to offer the following workshops via Zoom:

  • Jan 19 – Citrus for Super Bowl
  • Feb 16 – Dehydration for Soups 
  • March 16 – Soups & Roots
  • April 20 – “Night of Fermenting” Cheese/Yogurt/Sauerkraut 
  • May 18 – Jams & Jellies
  • June 15 – “Ready for BBQ Season” Condiments & Beverages
  • July 20 - Red, White & Blue
  • Aug 17 – “Tomato Mania” Salsas, Sauces & Peppers
  • Sep 21 – Sausages & Mustards
  • Oct 19 – “Apples, Pears & Persimmons Oh My”
  • Nov 16 – Sides Dishes for your Holiday Dinner
  • Dec 21 – Quick Gifts

To sign up for any of the workshops above, visit https://sacmfp.ucanr.edu

To find other upcoming UC Master Food Preserver Program events, visit https://mfp.ucanr.edu/Events.

For resources for preserving food and more information about the UC Master Food Preserver Program, visit https://mfp.ucanr.edu.

By Pamela Kan-Rice
Author - Assistant Director, News and Information Outreach