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Wilburn: Pick a peck of peaches to preserve

POSTED: July 27, 2008 5:01 a.m.

Gardens overflowing with shiny, red tomatoes and bright green peppers ... orchards filled with sweet, juicy peaches ... farmers' markets piled high with fresh produce ... they are all so easy to preserve.

Why not save some of this bounty to enjoy through the year? Why not make that homemade salsa or fig preserves as gifts for your family and friends?

My grandmother was a food preserver. If a fruit had juice she turned it into jelly, jam, preserves or pickles - and so can you.

The Hall County Extension office has information you can pick up from our office on canning, freezing, drying, pickling and making jams and jellies. The office is at 734 E. Crescent Drive, Suite 300, in Gainesville. Call ahead and we'll have the brochures ready for you.

You can also go online to the National Home Food Preservation Web site. This Web site, which is maintained by the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension, has hundreds of food preservation recipes as well as links to other research-based Web sites.

The University of Georgia Cooperative Extension has revised the nationally-known 376-page book, "So Easy to Preserve." Now in its fifth edition, this 2006 book contains more than 150 tested recipes along with step-by-step instructions and in-depth information. New recipes were added along with the latest and safest USDA recommendations.

Chapters include instruction on preserving food, canning, pickling products, jelly making and freezing and drying. The order form is available online.

Debbie Wilburn is county extension agent in family and consumer science with the Hall County Extension. Contact: 770-535-8290.



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