Food, Community And All Things Sustainable

July 25, 2011

Grandma's Pickling Spice Recipe

Grandma was known for her kitchen skills. People sent her letters with special requests for her canned goods. They knew a good thing when they tasted it!

Grandma's Pickling Spice Recipe
2 Tablespoons Mustard Seeds
2 Tablespoons Whole Allspice
2 Teaspoons Coriander Seeds
2 Teaspoons Whole Cloves
1 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
1 Teaspoon Dried Red Pepper Flakes (or more if you like more heat)
1 Bay Leaf, Crumbled
1 Cinnamon Stick, 2 Inches In Length

 We never purchased pickling spice at the grocery store. I didn't realize one could do that until I was well into my 20s.

July 6, 2011

Home Canning ... Another Word for Sustainable

So very happy to see Sustainable Dakota Digest published an article I wrote for them: Home Canning: How to Get Started.

Sustainable Dakota Digest is designed to foster sustainability in Western Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Wyoming and Northern Nebraska.

Facebook: Sustainable Dakota Digest
Twitter: SD Digest, hashtag #sustainsd

July 4, 2011

Canning - A Way of Life

The truth be told, I cannot remember when I stared canning. What I do remember is that home canned food sure tasted good. In our multi-generational home, Grandma canned enough for us to eat all winter and then some. As 6- and 7-year olds we were stationed at wash tubs to clean cucumbers, tomatoes, beets and more. Swathed in an apron, standing on a little wooden stool, armed with a vegetable brush and a square of muslin we worked away at our task. It was a big deal to be promoted to jar stuffer as a 9- or 10-year old. Teenagers managed the loading and unloading of the hug copper boilers loaded down with 20 or more jars of pure goodness.

We were never without food, could feed unexpected company by opening a few jars, and had plenty of fancy canned things for gifting. Grandma categorized relishes, chutneys, certain jams and jellies and her famous pickled beets as fancy canned - not everyday fair, intended for gifts or eating on special days.

My dream is to start a canning school, to teach a skill I learned as a child, and from which I have benefited my entire life.