Yes I can can

Posted on August 6, 2010


This is glory time in the orchards and fields of Antrim County. I imagine a larder filled with gleaming jars of apricots, tasty pickles, dark cherry sauce. There are only two problems.

  • I am afraid of poisoning myself and the Cowboy. (He is fond of fruit. Miss Sadie and Miss Puss are carnivores.)
  • Canning is hot work and August is quite hot enough at the Writing Studio and Bait Shop without filling the kitchen with steaming pots.

ISLAND offered solutions to these problems. There would be a canning workshop at King Orchards. People who know what they are doing would keep me from poisoning anyone and we would heat up the Kings’ kitchen. The apricots would be included. I was on it like the Cowboy on a lemon bar. Looky here:

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We canned apricots, but it turns out that peaches are canned exactly the same way, so we acquired transferable skills. (Feel free to pretend those are peaches instead of apricots if you like peaches better.) We worked into the lovely evening, and the fully canned jars are resting over at King’s as I write this. It turns out that they are not to be disturbed for a bit after they come out of the canning bath, and I was content to leave them at it.

There are many missing images. The jars of apricots immersed in their bath, for example, and the jars coming out, and the cunning labels being attached. At some point, a person must decide whether to have an experience or document it, and I am very fond of apricots.

If I had time I could write a much more entertaining post about all this, because we did have a LOT of fun, but today is a busy little day. Thanks to the Kings, Yvonne Stephens of ISLAND, and Jennifer Berkey, an Extension Educator from the MSU Extension, we’re all alive to enjoy it. You can learn the serious stuff from the Canning Handouts. Follow this link to the Extension and look over in the right column where there are many, many handouts listed.

Posted in: Local foods