BHG Canning

My love of cooking and baking and food in general dates back to my childhood. My mom was a fantastic cook and there are lots of photos of my brother and I working with her in the kitchen.

When I went away to university I was excited to try new recipes and experiment with foods I hadn’t tried before. As I got older, I started reading food magazines, meal planning, and cooking for my friends and roommates.

When I moved into my own “first house” in March of 2012 I was eager to turn my house into a home. Visions of dinner parties, baking bread, bringing treats to work, and growing my own produce danced in my head. I dreamed of creating a domestic paradise – in addition to working two regular jobs, tutoring, taking an online class, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, of course!

Life was moving along smoothly until a fateful day in the grocery store that would change the course of my summer. There was a long line, there was a Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publication about canning, and there was no way my summer was going to be untouched. I got the magazine, I came home, I read it cover to cover, I attached sticky notes to all the pages with things I wanted to make (there were a lot of sticky notes), and I got excited about canning.

BHG Canning

The magazine that changed the course of my summer

Coincidentally, just after this happened, my dad (who lives about a 5 minute drive from my house) went away for a week. He has a big garden, including raspberries, and they just happened to be ripe. I went over every day that week and picked berries. I would come home, wash them, put them on cookie sheets, freeze them, and then put them into storage for the winter.

After a few days (and a rapidly filling freezer), I decided I would try making some raspberry jam. Easy. Safe. Basically free.

And that was the start of it! Less than two months later, my pantry is close to overflowing with preserves, vegetables, and fruits, all safely stored away for the winter.

After much urging from my friends, I have decided to create this blog to document what I made, what recipes I used, how things turned out, and what I make in the future. Some will be canning, some will be baking, some will be regular old cooking. Really anything that strikes my fancy is fair game for Cottage Fare!


2 comments on “BHG Canning

  1. Carol Stathers says:

    Kim I am so thrilled you are found a love of preserving, canning, baking and just old-fashioned healthy home cooking.
    Your Mom was an awesome cook and I love how she inspired you!!
    When I was your age I always dreamed of an old fashioned house with gabels in the country. A freezer full of home grown or local foods, shelves full of home canning, fresh syrup on Sunday morning pancakes, muffins filled with fresh berries…. I could go on forever but that is my home in Summerland:)
    I am so excited to share receipes with you and others who have the same love for home cooking. Earlier this summer, I started to wonder if canning was becomming a lost art but it is so neat to see you are so excited and see the value.
    I will share with you my favourite drink this summer…..
    Homemade juice (I bet you can guess that mine is cherry with all our trees), add about 1 ” in the glass, add club soda or sparkling water and top with lots of fresh fruit (any kind – peaches, watermelon, grapes) and frozen berries. Have fun stirring, watching the colour change the taste of the fruit explode – make it in a wine glass and add a garnish of fresh mint. Add white wine for a twist!!

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