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Cooperative Extension offers home canning classes

Staff Writer

Interested in learning new techniques for canning jams, making pickles or pressure canning? Lincoln County’s Cooperative Extension office will be holding home canning classes for $10 a session over the next couple of months.
Melinda Houser, family and consumer sciences extension agent, will host the courses.
Houser’s next demonstration will be 6 p.m. May 31, when she will explain proper procedures for freezing, drying and water-bath canning various foods.
A week later, at 6 p.m., June 7, followed by a 10 a.m., June 14 course, Houser will demonstrate how to use a pressure canner for low-acid foods, where participants will get to take home their jar. Houser will go step-by-step with students as she supervises participants through the process.
Classes will learn how to make pickles at 10 a.m., June 10, or at 6 p.m., June 11.
“A lot of people have small, backyard gardens and are using recipes that are 25 years old – it’s becoming a safety issue,” Houser told the Times-News Wednesday. “People are still using grandma’s recipes and they aren’t the safest.”
Houser hopes to give students a basic knowledge of how to preserve items by using a variety of different methods, and will give students take-home instructions at each class.
More people are eating local; she estimates about 200-300 phone calls a summer from patrons asking about preserving food, so we know people are canning and doing this, Houser said.
The course is hands-on, helping participants learn by doing.

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