Wednesday, July 29, 2015

High Summer at the Market

The produce keeps rolling in as we move into high summer.  I've noticed when making labels that I'm canning many products a month ahead of when they were canned last year.  I don't know if the produce is ripening ahead of schedule or if I'm getting to it faster than I did last year.  I know I'm offering more products because the crate set-up keeps expanding.

Monday, May 25, 2015

'Tis the Season!

The Floyd Farmers Market officially opened May 16th with a jam-packed (no pun intended) crowd in attendance.  I think this past weekend's crowd was even bigger!


I'm glad the season has finally arrived.  Fresh produce is rolling in (mmmmm....strawberries....), people hungry for fresh produce are rolling in, and I'm back to capturing those flavors for people to stash away and enjoy all year 'round.  Plus, it really is the social highlight of my week.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Quick Notes

Spring's Here!!!!  YAY!!!!

'Cuz I was getting really tired of seeing this

and this

which were the respective views from the front and back of my new home.

Now that the weather is (mostly) nice, I'm in the process of reclaiming an old, weathered, but still sturdy and dry, wooden shed that's on the property for the storage of my gardening gear.  The metal shed beside my trailer will hold household and kitchen gear and my chest freezer.  I'm kind of under the gun to get this all done because my ex has put our house on the market and I'll soon lose the storage in the garage.

I'm also waiting for the deed to my new home to be transferred into my name so work can begin on rehabbing the trailer into a more home-like structure.  Currently it looks like this


but I'm hoping to make it look more like this
front
back
My friend Phillip is coming to bush hog the field soon.  The multiflora rose has crossed the stream in places and must be tamed now.  Then I hope to be able to maintain it with my little Barbie lawn tractor.  I looked a couple of days ago along the stream and the watercress is greening up nicely and shoots of the native yellow iris are poking up. Hopefully Julius will arrive to turn the gardens for me.  They've both run wild and need to be brought back into the fold.

And the hens are laying.
 

In between all this I'm getting ready for the Floyd Farmers Market which opens May 16.  Since I'm offering more than preserves I've had a name change to Rebecca's Pantry.  I think it's more descriptive of what I'm offering to grace your tables.

Although I've had requests for classes, I need to put them on hold for a little longer.  But keep an eye out.  I've been negotiating with the Jacksonville Center to teach a class on fermentation and other techniques that don't require a stove.  The JAX doesn't have a range and would love to receive the donation of a sturdy kitchen stove (new or used) for cooking classes for their new Maker Series (hint, hint)!

So that's what's happening at the moment.  Not entirely out of limbo yet but I can see the exit ramp up ahead.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Marketing Floyd: Farmers Market Products Have Their Own Page



I've been getting requests for a list of the products I sell at market to be published on Eating Floyd.  I've started a new page with that list but think of it as a work in progress.  Just click on the Rebecca Preserves tab at the top of the page.  More photos coming, a price list, and eventually contact information for placing orders and buying direct when market season is over.  Thanks everyone, for your patronage, input and enthusiasm!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Fermenting Floyd: A Peach Basket Full of Pickles

Bess and KC of Kester Clark Farm are my stall neighbors at the Floyd Farmers Market.  They had a flood of pickling cucumbers this year and just couldn't unload them all.  I became the lucky recipient of a peach basket chock full of these goodies and the dilemma of preserving them.  I was looking for fast and simple so I decided to try my hand at making crock pickles.

If you're from the Northeast and a member of my generation or older you may remember being able to buy a giant pickle pulled from a jar or crock that sat on the counter of your local deli or butcher shop.  Where I lived these were known as crock pickles or kosher dills.  If you lived in or near one of the big cities, especially the NYC area you might have known them as sours or half-sours.

Guided by Sandor Katz, I decided to make half-sours.  Most of my ferments are done in quart or two quart ball jars but for this I needed a much larger container.  Luckily I had picked up a 3 gallon jar at a yard sale.  You could also use a food grade plastic bucket which can often be obtained from a friendly local restaurant.  Or an actual crock if you're lucky enough to have one.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Preserving Floyd: Home Food Preservation & Culinary Arts Center is Gearing Back Up!

Preservation classes return starting April 12th at a new location in Floyd.  Click on the Home Food Preservation and Culinary Arts Center tab above for more information!

Eating Floyd: Coming Back



In the middle of last summer life as I knew and loved it ended.  As Amy Roloff says, "It came out of nowhere...and it feels like death."

But in the midst of such emotional devastation, love and support appears from the most unexpected places and people and I am so grateful to everyone who have and are helping me stand up and move on.
I wasn't totally curled up in a whimpering ball.  At least not all the time.  I had to scramble to get some income.  When you're 57 and have been out of the traditional work force for some time getting hired for any kind of job is pretty impossible.  I use to tell the boys that if they had kitchen skills they could always find work anywhere that would hold them over.  Little did I know how that would work out for me.