Updates from the West Coast Book Tour

Cart of Naturally Sweet Food in Jars at Powell's

This is it. The last day of my west coast book tour. It has certainly been one for my personal record books. I taught six hands-on classes, spent nearly 16 hours demonstrating how to make Strawberry Cocoa Jam, went to ten different cities (in two different countries!), did a TV spot, a radio interview, and spoke at Powell’s Books (huge thanks to Ivy Manning for helping with that event).

I logged countless hours in cars (both a rented Passat and my parents’ trusty Outlander wagon) and managed to recover from a case of the flu in a relatively short amount of time. And best of all, I met so many wonderful people and signed lots of books.

I’ve got a demo and book signing tonight at the Book Larder in Seattle. After that, I drive back to my parents’ house in Portland, give them back their car, and fly home to Philadelphia on Thursday (just in time to make brisket for our Saturday Seder).

I’ll have a recipe up for you guys tomorrow, but in the mean time, I’ve got a few links I want to share.

First up is the clip of me making jam and pickles on AM Northwest last Friday. I only had six minutes, so I couldn’t do anything completely, but I think you get the idea behind those two recipes.

A few weeks ago, I did an interview with Margaret Roach for her radio show, A Way to Garden. If you haven’t heard it yet, you can find it here.

The interview I did for the Food Show on KBOO (Portland’s Community Radio Station) aired earlier today. The archived version isn’t up yet, but when it is, you’ll find it here. Running Press has also donated two copies of Naturally Sweet Food in Jars to KBOO for their fundraising drive. It’s a great way to support a small radio station AND get a copy of my new book.

Over at the Fillmore Container blog, you’ll find a really great post in which a number of preserving writers offer up their thoughts on what preserving means to them. I wrote a few paragraphs for them, as did Theresa Loe, Joel and Dana from Well Preserved, Amanda Feifer, Linda Ziedrich, Sean Timberlake, Sharon Peterson, and Nancy Wilker.

And finally, it’s Wednesday, which means that there’s a brand new episode of Local Mouthful available for your listening pleasure. This week, Joy and I chatted about potatoes, Passover, stinging nettles, and more!

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Giveaway: $150 of Freeze-Dried Food from Harvest Right

HarvestRight jars

Photo courtesy of Harvest Right

When I was a kid, freeze dried foods seemed magical. They looked like their fresh counterparts, but when you bit into them they were typically crisp and a bit crumbly. The one my sister and I liked the best was the freeze dried ice cream (aka astronaut’s ice cream), because it was such a sweet treat.

Harvest Right freeze dryers

Photo courtesy of Harvest Right

When I started preserving food and was researching all the various ways to do it, I looked into what it took to freeze dry food and discovered at that time, it just wasn’t something that could be done at home. The machines cost tens of thousands of dollars and were far bigger than anything I could fit into my apartment-sized kitchen.

Harvest Right packaging

However, in recent years, a company called Harvest Right has entered the market with a freeze dryer that’s scaled and priced for home use. While not cheap, it allows home users to preserve food in a way that makes it light, easily storable, and still delicious.

Harvest Right apple slices

I’ve not had a chance to try a Harvest Right Home Freeze Dryer myself (sadly, this machine is still a bit too big for my little apartment), reading this post over on Our Best Bites made me itch to take one for a spin. However, I have had a chance to try some food dried in one of these magical freeze dryers and I’ve found them to be flavorful, texturally interesting, and really fun to eat.

Harvest Right freeze-dried bananas

For today’s giveaway, Harvest Right wants to give one lucky Food in Jars reader a chance to try some food preserved in their Home Freeze Dryer. Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter to win $150 worth of food dried in a Harvest Right machine (to maximize your chances, make sure to enter using all the different options)!

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Seattle Area Events for Naturally Sweet Food in Jars

pantry at delancey

These events make up the last leg of my west coast book tour. Both the classes at Lepp Farm Market and The Pantry are wait list only, but there’s still plenty of space available for my Book Larder event. Hope to see you guys there!

Monday, April 18 (Abbotsford, BC)
Next, a leap to the north. I’ll be teaching a canning class at Lepp Farm Market (33955 Clayburn Road) from 7 to 9:30 pm. This class costs $77 (which includes a copy of the book) and you can register here.

Tuesday, April 19 (Seattle)
I’m returning to The Pantry at Delancey (1417 NW 70th Street) for a canning class focused on natural sweeteners. We’ll make four recipes from the book, and everyone will go home with a jar or two of freshly made preserves. The class is from 6:30 to 9:30 pm and costs $85.Register here.

Wednesday, April 20 (Seattle)
I’ll be at the Book Larder (4252 Fremont Ave. N) in Seattle from 6:30-8 pm demonstrating a half batch of the strawberry cocoa jam from the new the book and signing as many copies as I can. The event is free, but they ask that you RSVP using the form at the bottom of this page.

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Oregon Events for Naturally Sweet Food in Jars

portland homestead supply

For those of you in Portland, Beaverton, or Eugene, here are all my upcoming book events in a nice, neat blog post. Please join me!

Friday, April 15 (SW Portland)
Come out for a demo-style class at The Cakery (6306 SW Capitol Highway), from 6:30 to 7:30 pm. The $30 cost of the event includes a copy of Naturally Sweet Food in Jars. Sign up by calling 503-546-3737.

Saturday, April 16 (Beaverton)
You’ll find me at the Beaverton Farmers Market (12375 SW 5th Street) from 10 am to 1 pm. I’ll be demoing continually and will have books on hand for sale and signature.

Saturday, April 16 (SE Portland)
Later that same day, join me for a hands-on natural sweeteners canning class at Portland Homestead Supply from 3-5 pm. The class costs $45 and you can register here.

Sunday, April 17 (Eugene)
At 11 am, you’ll find me at Down to Earth’s Olive Street (532 Olive Street) location for a canning demo and book signing. It’s a free event and a good time will be had by all.

Sunday, April 17 (Portland)
That evening at 7:30 pm, I’ll be at the main location of Powell’s Books (it’s something of a dream come true), having a conversation with fellow food writer Ivy Manning. There will be a book signing to follow. More details here.

 

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Giveaway: Deluxe Fermenting Tool Set From Masontops

Pickle Pipe Set - Food in Jars

With the days warming and spring produce is starting to appear, there’s no better time to get a couple jars of fermented pickles bubbling away in your kitchen. And today, I’m featuring some terrific tools to help you do just that!

Our friends at Masontops have offered up one of their Deluxe Fermenting Tool Sets for this week’s giveaway. This set includes four of their wide mouth Pickle Pebbles (designed to fit smoothly into a wide mouth jar and keep your produce comfortably below the liquid line), a three-pack of their Pickle Pipes (the easiest airlock ever!), and their Pickle Packer (never has it been simpler to tightly press sliced, shredded, or chopped veg into a jar).

carrots in a jar

The folks at Masontops produced a really terrific Fermenting Guide during their Kickstarter campaign and have kindly allowed me to reprint their recipe for Gingered Carrots, which you’ll find after the jump. I didn’t manage to make these carrots before I left on book tour, but they’re top on my list for when I get home!

Also, if you feel that you can’t live without your very own Deluxe Fermenting Tool Set, the nice folks at Masontops have given me a code for 15% off any purchase on their website. Just use “FIJ15” during check-out to get the deal!

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Bay Area Events for Naturally Sweet Food in Jars

Bi-Rite fruit

Hi friends! The book tour is going hot and heavy for the next ten days, so I’ll be dropping in each morning for the next few days to spotlight the three regions where I’ll be. First up? The San Francisco area!

Monday, April 11 (Half Moon Bay)
Come see me at the New Leaf Community Market in Half Moon Bay (150 San Mateo Road) starting at 4 pm for a canning demo and book signing. No pre-registration is required and it’s a free event.

Tuesday, April 12 (San Francisco)
I’ll be at 18 Reasons (3674 18th Street), co-teaching a canning class with the delightful Shakirah Simley, Canner-in-Residence for the Bi-Rite Family of Businesses. We’ll make two recipes from my new book, and there will be a goodly amount of hands on involvement. The class starts at 6:30 pm and costs $55-65. Register here.

Wednesday, April 13 (San Francisco)
I’ll be at Omnivore Books (3885 Cesar Chavez Street) at 6:30 pm, demoing a half batch of strawberry cocoa jam, and signing books. There will be samples and they will be delicious.

Thursday, April 14 (Berkeley)
Join me for a Meet and Greet at Books Inc. (1491 Shattuck Avenue) in Berkeley from 3:30 to 5:30 pm. I’ll do a short demonstration, have some jam samples for tasting and will be available to answer all canning questions.

 

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