Canning and Food Preservation Programs

Thames Valley Sustainable Connections is committed, through its farmers markets, to bringing the freshest, locally grown foods to New London and Groton City. In fact, one of our phrases is, “Bringing the Farm to the City” – and we love that!  We also want to make sure our customers know what to do with the food once they have it (dragon tongue beans – hmm????). Of course, the long term objective is to eat it, right? But there are so many yummy ways to prepare food  to eat now and preserve foods for a later time. That’s where our preserving and cooking classes come in – simple canning classes (and more) with a focus on getting the most benefit from “what’s in season” and a limited food budget.

Our 2017 Classes include:

 Yogurt & Cheese Making Saturday Feb 25th 1-3pm with Amelia Smith
Homemade yogurt and ricotta cheese are inexpensive and easy to make at home. Learn how to transform milk into yogurt and farmer’s cheese (or ricotta) with a few ingredients and a couple of hours. Learn about the origins and the health benefits of consuming the good bacteria found in these foods. Take home recipes and samples of each, as well as the confidence to make your own at home!

Homemade yogurt and ricotta cheese are inexpensive and easy to make at home. Learn how to transform milk into yogurt and farmer’s cheese (or ricotta) with a few ingredients and a couple of hours. Learn about the origins and the health benefits of consuming the good bacteria found in these foods. Take home recipes and samples of each, as well as the confidence to make your own at home!

Native American Foods Saturday March 11th 13pm with Rachel Sayet
Native peoples traditionally had celebrations of food based on the seasons and March is the time for maple sugar. Rachel Sayet, Mohegan, holds a B.S. from Cornell University and an MA in anthropology at Harvard University. She works for the Mohegan Library, organizing events with Native authors, running a weekly story time, and promoting indigenous food. She will give a brief history on what maple sugar is and ways it has been used in Native American cooking. We will make Modern Day Narragansett Strawberry Bread and a maple drink together, and take home recipes of each!

Pizza Making – Saturday May 6th 13pm with Patricia Sebastian                            at Church Of The City, 8 Washington Street, New London, CT
No bread machine, no mixer,…….no problem! Save money and learn the secrets of how to make a delicious homemade pizza by just using your hands! Stop ordering take out and learn how to make your own unique creations in this workshop! You will take home a full pizza recipes.

Intro to Home Canning – Jam and Pickles – Saturday June 17th 1-3pm with Amelia Smith
Canning food is a wonderful way to preserve your summer bounty throughout the whole year! Learn how to make homemade jam and basic dill pickles using seasonal and local ingredients. Learn the steps and equipment needed to process the jars safely, as well as what to look for when buying fresh fruits and vegetables. Take home recipes and samples of each!

Intro to Pressure Canning  – Saturday Aug 26th 1-3pm with Amelia Smith
Tomatoes have the best flavor when they are in season! Since the growing season is so short canning is a great way to ensure that you will have the tastes of summer all year long. In this workshop we will learn the basics of pressure canning and how to use this process when processing tomatoes. The water bath method will also be explained and demonstrated. Everyone will take home a jar of tomatoes and the confidence to start canning on your own!

Intro to Fermented Foods, Krauts and Kimchi  Saturday September 30th 2-4pm with Amelia Smith
Sauerkraut and kimchi each come from very different parts of the world, yet are made the same way. They can be very expensive to buy yet very affordable to make with a little bit of time and some salt! Learn about the amazing health benefits and a brief history of fermented foods. We will be making our own kraut and kimchi using seasonal vegetables and a few extra ingredients. You will take home your own jar of sauerkraut or kimchi and some recipes and resources for starting your own fermentations!

Pie Crusts (Sweet and Savory) Saturday Nov 11th 1-3pm with Patricia Sebastian
Just in time for the holidays! Learn how to make a pie crust from scratch that you can use interchangeably with sweet and savory fillings. Patricia will demonstrate her method of making a delicious flaky pie crust that you will be able to recreate with your favorite fillings. We will make several different pies and everyone will get samples of each and a list of recipes and instructions to take home.

Holiday Cookies
Saturday Dec 9th 1-3 pm with Amelia Smith
Get out your favorite cookie cutters and rolling pins and join us for some holiday fun! We will make 3 different cookie doughs together that are inexpensive and require very little time to make. You will be able to impress your friends and family when you show up to the holiday party with beautiful hand made desserts! Bring your sweet tooth and holiday spirit!

Herbal Remedies Saturday Dec 16th 1-3 pm with Karen Parker
Elderberry syrup is widely known for its antioxidant activity to lower cholesterol, boost the immune system, and improve heart health. It is taken to help prevent colds and viral infections. Learn how to inexpensively make this health tonic yourself! You will get to participate in making a batch of the syrup and will take home a bottle as well as recipes and instructions so you can make your own at home.

When “putting up” fresh locally grown produce from your garden or from a local farm, you are supporting local food systems, while stretching your food dollar. We bring in local chefs and home economists to teach affordable two hour classes on making exciting and economical meals, as well as value added products at home.

Food and Canning Workshops brought to you by Thames Valley Sustainable Connections, sponsored By: St. James Episcopal Church, New London Field of Greens

Location: St. James Church, 76 Federal St. New London CT 06320

Enrollment 8 – 12 students per class, 20$ suggested donation

Please RSVP to Amelia (860)- 235-9123 or foodandcanning@hotmail.com