yummy class and upcoming weeks

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I’m pleased to report that the Gifts from the Kitchen class went well yesterday.  Although I co-led the instruction, it was really team-taught, with veteran and new MFP teachers giving instruction on safely canning cranberry chutney and herbal jelly; making sweet gifts of homemade marshmallows, glazed nuts, and soup and cookie mixes; and making flavored vinegars, oils and liqueurs.  We had a terrific group of students, one of whom wrote a report on the class over at her new Eugene food blog, Our Home Works.  Thanks, Amy!

Since she did such a good job with the recap, I don’t have much more to say, other than I think that she makes a really good point about the Master Food Preservers focusing on budget-conscious planning, shopping, and preparing local foods.  One of the many things I like about the organization is the old-school home economics focus that comes from the veterans of the programs; many of them are farmers or were raised on a farm, most have lived in Oregon for many decades, and they know how to make the most of every single penny and every single moment.  I can’t express how inspirational — and I’m a pretty cynical, non-sentimental grump so you know this word is special — they’ve been to me.  I knew that they’d pitch in to help in every way they could, and they did, from doing all the dishes and ingredient prep to jumping in and fielding questions, adding immeasurably to the presentations Jen and I had prepared.

I posted a couple of new classes that are being offered after the holidays (see the descriptions on the right), and I’d encourage you all to take them and see for yourself!

I’m going to write about one of the demos we did in the class, the Rosemary Riesling Confetti Jelly, for my next Eugene Weekly column at the end of December, since its pale bubbly color and festive confetti bits of rosemary, chili and lemon zest makes such a lovely appetizer for New Year’s Eve.  Stay tuned ’til then.  I’m going to be taking a bit of a blogging hiatus in the next few weeks to focus on finishing some school obligations and planning an upcoming conference trip to San Francisco, but I’ll pop back in from time to time if I think of anything interesting to say.  In the meantime, enjoy your holiday baking, cooking, and entertaining!

4 thoughts on “yummy class and upcoming weeks

  1. Amy 14 December 2008 / 10:30 pm

    Thanks for the link to my site and have a great holiday!

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  2. David 17 December 2008 / 11:04 am

    Hi,
    Your blog and taste in food is wonderful. I think what you are doing with food preservation is great, but I was wondering if you know of any classes or other sources of information dealing with canning meat products. I would love to can my own pates or duck confit, but I am nervous about poisoning myself or others. Any advice?

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  3. Eugenia 17 December 2008 / 11:20 am

    Amy, you too! :)

    David, thanks! I checked the resources I have here at home, and there’s absolutely nothing on pressure-canning pâté or confit, and I have a strong feeling it is not considered safe. Unfortunately, our Master Food Preserver hotline is closed for the season, and we don’t have any classes planned for preserving meat. (It’s an expensive undertaking and not many people are interested.)

    I know there are recipes for crock-preserved confits in French cookbooks; you might try these.

    If you are interested in learning about preservation in general, you may be interested in the full Master Preserver class, which starts in April and covers meat, as well as everything else.

    If you call the hotline and leave a message asking for information on the class and any relevant publications on preserving meat, someone will call you back. Be patient, though, as you’re finding us at the slowest time of the year. Good luck!

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  4. Veronica 19 December 2008 / 2:15 pm

    Hi, Jennifer!

    I just want to thank you for the outstanding Gifts from the Kitchen class last Saturday. I was inspired by all the Master Food Preservers and your wealth of knowledge. The lunch was excellent too! Thanks for sharing your expertise.

    BTW, I’m really enjoying your Rosemary Riesling Confetti Jelly. It’s a unique combination of flavors, and it looks so pretty. I look forward to taking other classes offered by the MFP program. Thanks again! :)

    Like

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