Discover the fun — and functional — art of preserving the season’s bounty of delicious, local produce with University of Illinois Extension Educator Laura Barr during monthly demonstrations at the Aurora Farmers Market.
The next presentation will be on blackberry jam from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 20. Throughout the summer, Barr has been demonstrating various food preservation techniques with fresh fruits and vegetables during a series of sessions at the market, and each session includes a corresponding Q-and-A session.
“Canning is a simple, smart way to make the most of the local produce available this time of year,” Barr said. “Food preservation is on the comeback trail, with more and more people wanting to buy locally grown food and preserve their own food.”
There is a growing trend for home-grown produce as well. All of these empower the consumer to control recipes and use less salt and sugar if needed, said Barr.
“As folks engage in their gardens, it is easy to save the bountiful harvest for later in the year and to share it with loved ones. As we serve our preserved food, it is important to have the latest scientific updates on the canning process.”
The focus on evidenced-based practice and scientific principles is the mission of U of I Extension. In each session, Barr will explore the important safety and process steps using a tested, proven recipe. Remaining topics include: blackberry jam on Aug. 20 and fresh salsa on Sept. 10. Look for the demonstrations next to the market information booth with the orange awning.
Barr has been providing education on food preservation for the last few years at the Aurora Farmers Market, and each year, the audience and interest grows.
“The partnership between Aurora Farmers Market and University of Illinois Extension continues to flourish,” said Barr. “Aurora Farmers Market is Illinois’ oldest market of its kind and it is focused on bringing the freshest produce to attenders.”
For more information on University of Illinois Extension programs, visit web.extension.illinois.edu/dkk/. University of Illinois Extension provides educational programs and research-based information to help Illinois residents improve their quality of life, develop skills and solve problems.
SOURCE: University of Illinois Extension news release