August marks the beginning of the harvest season and gardeners often discover too late that they've planter a few too many tomatoes or cucumbers, but with a little help from the UNH Cooperative Extension, folks overwhelmed with produce can learn how to make it last.
At locations all over the state, UNH Cooperative Extension educators are offering food preservation workshops that explore the techniques and tricks for safely canning, freezing and drying foods, along with making jams, jellies, even pickles, said Extension educator Ann Hamilton.
Hamilton said that she and other educators often get questions about preserving food at this time of year from people who find themselves flooded with nature's bounty.
“Someone called me recently and said she was over-run with cucumbers and wanted recipes for pickles,” said Hamilton. “And tomatoes are starting to come in and they're one of the top products for canning, so we decided to offer these workshops.”
Hamilton said the workshops will offer plenty of information about preserving food, but is also a good time for people to ask questions and ensure they understand the process and what's needed before they start storing their harvests.
“There's nothing worse than when someone gets halfway through a process and realizes they don't have what they need to finish,” said Hamilton. “I hate to have to tell them it's too late, so I'd rather they ask their questions before they start.”
The workshops are open to the public, registration for most is $5 and can be paid at the door, and will be held at the following locations:
Tonight, July 31: 5 to 7 p.m. at the UNH Cooperative Extension, Coos County Office, 629A Main St., Lancaster. Contact Teresa Locke at 787-6944 or email Teresa.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, Aug. 6: 6 to 8 p.m. at the Rockingham County Complex Nursing Home Hilton Auditorium, 119 North Road, Brentwood. Pre-registration: contact Lynn Harrison at 679-5616 or email Lynn.email@example.com.
Monday, Aug. 13: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the UNH Cooperative Extension, Belknap County Office 635 Main St., third floor, Laconia. Pre-registration: contact Betty Lou Canty at 447-3834 or Bettylou.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, Aug. 14: 6 to 8 p.m., Keene Public Library, 60 Winter St., Keene. Co-sponsored with the Keene Public Library; no registration fee. Contact the library at 352-0157.
Wednesday, Aug. 15: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Granite State College, 53 Technology Lane, Conway. Pre-registration: contact Betty Lou Canty at 447-3834 or email Bettylou.email@example.com.
Thursday, Aug. 16: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the UNH Cooperative Extension, Merrimack County Office, 315 Daniel Webster Hwy, Boscawen. Pre-registration: contact Teresa Locke at 787-6944 or email Teresa.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, Aug. 20: 5 to 6:30 p.m. Holderness Town Hall, Route 3, Holderness. Co-sponsored with the Holderness Recreation Department. Pre-registration: Teresa Locke at 787-6944 or email Teresa.email@example.com.
Tuesday, Aug. 28: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Wolfeboro Community Center, 32 Lehner St. Pre-registration: contact Betty Lou Canty at 447-3834 or email Bettylou.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wednesday, Aug. 29: 5 to 7 p.m. at the UNH Cooperative Extension, Merrimack County Office, 315 Daniel Webster Highway, Boscawen. Pre-registration: contact Teresa Locke at 787-6944 or email Teresa.email@example.com.
For more information call 877-EXT-GROW (398-4769) or visit extension.unh.edu/.