Our gardens are really starting to produce now. For local food enthusiasts, it’s a great time of year to start thinking about preserving the harvest.
Braelea Acres posted a tutorial on their Facebook Page this week about how they prepare beans for the freezer. What a treat mid-winter to enjoy local produce for dinner!
Braelea Acres’ post read as follows:
“We love giving our customers the freshest produce possible at market. Sometimes we have left-overs or the produce needs to be picked in between market days. When this happens, we save it for our winter supply.
It’s so easy to freeze beans…
1.Wash beans, remove stems and snap into desired size.
2. Blanch the beans in boiling water for 1 minute. I use a pot with a strainer insert.
3. Rinse/plunge beans in cold water. This stops the cooking process.
4. Spread blanched beans on a clean towel and let dry for a few minutes. A fan can help with this.
5. Bag your beans and throw them in the freezer.”
The next time you see lots of beans at market, buy more than you need that week and give it a try!
Some of our vendors do the work of preserving the harvest for you. If you haven’t already tried Margit’s jams at Lost Road Gardens table – be sure to give them a try! All the berries that Margit uses come from her and Ivar’s gardens.
Another favourite preservation method of our vendors is dehydration. When work in the greenhouse winds down, Amanda and Frank of Rainbow Terrace focus their energies on their fantastic garlic crop. Their dehydrated garlic powder is a must-have for your kitchen! Unlike the tasteless yellow powder we’re used to, Rainbow Terrace’s garlic powder is so flavourful you’ll wonder why you ever go to the trouble of peeling fresh cloves! Amanda is already hard at work dehydrating some of this year’s crop. Make sure to scoop some up when you see it!
And finally, baked goods! You can preserve the harvest in your baking too. Zucchini loaf, pumpkin muffins, and fresh berry pies all freeze well. Although if you buy pies from Ashley at A2 Baking Creations (all made with real fruit, no pie filling), it’s highly unlikely that they’d last long enough to make it to your freezer! I love these mini pies that she makes. They’re perfect for one or two people.
Wednesday this week:
Watch for artisan Lissa Clement of Grey Willow – jewelry, candles, soap and more!
Saturday this week:
We’re joined by artisans Art de Claude, White Pine Wood Creations, Northern Life Soap, and Lone Elm. Did you try Lone Elm’s fabulous natural insect repellent? We need all the help with tick prevention this year that can get!
Musician Cheryl Casselman was one of our favourite guest musicians last year. We’re really excited to welcome her back for a performance!
Thanks for reading. See you at the market!