Are You Ready To…
- Rock the flavors of the season through canning, fermenting and more?
- Understand the canning processes so darn well, you have absolutely no fears at all?
- Make yogurt, fermented drinks, cultured butter and other good-for-you foods right on your countertop?
- Grow your own wholesome, delicious food no matter how small your space?
- Achieve a more sustainable (and yummy) kitchen through better food choices?
- Connect with your food from tiny seed, to the pantry shelf and then to your abundant table (with all fun bits in between)?
Then, you are in the right place!
Living Homegrown is an online resource to help you with all of the above.
Here, you can have a more authentic, farm-fresh lifestyle without having to buy a farm or even a large plot of land!
I know, because I’ve done it.
For the last 23 years, I have homesteaded on just 1/10th of an acre in the heart of Los Angeles. And I have a heck of a lot of training in the areas preserving, professional culinary arts, sustainable horticulture and even engineering.
Tie all of that experience and training together with burlap bow and we are talking about preserving peak flavors in a fun & sustainable way!
And I can get you there too!
For a head start, download my free canning resource guide. It will help you preserve like a pro!
I approach canning and preserving from a gardener’s perspective.
I believe in that special moment when produce is at its peak flavor, texture and sweetness.
I teach you how to capture that special moment in a “time capsule” called a canning jar.
That’s when the magic happens!
Later, when you open that jar with family and friends, you instantly experience that flavorful moment all over again, long after the season is over.
And it doesn’t matter if you grow it yourself or you buy it from your farmer’s market. It’s about being in-season, organic and local.
I also believe that growing and preserving food is about much more than just flavor and saving it for later.
It’s part of a journey!
It’s part of a larger picture of not only where our food comes from, but also where we are headed in our actions, our food choices and our lifestyle.
All food has a story. We have a story.
Here at Living Homegrown, we explore those stories together.
Not Just A Canning Blog
Living Homegrown is where you will find encouragement & ideas to work toward a more sustainable lifestyle.
It’s not about being perfect.
It is about taking steps on this flavorful journey to be just a little bit better.
We play around with:
Homegrown on the Airwaves
Through my work as a TV producer on PBS, I feature and interview some of the rock stars in the sustainability & food world.
This new Living Homegrown Podcast (launching soon) features interviews with these visionaries, plus in-depth canning tutorials and tips for using these ideas in our own homes and backyards.
We dive Into:
A Canning Course at Your Own Pace
This new online course takes you step-by-step through the canning process so that you are literally transformed from newbie to a confident advanced canner.
And it all happens in a fun, non-intimidating way!
We explore with gusto:
I did not grow up on a farm. I grew up in Los Angeles. But for as long as I can remember, we did canning and preserving.
Yes, I literally learned the basics at my mother’s apron strings.
But as a teenager, I shifted focus and followed in my father and brother’s footsteps toward technology. I went off to school to become a degreed engineer.
While I was away at school studying science, physics and math, something was missing.
My creative side longed for homemade low-sugar jams, home cultured yogurt and canned peaches with just a hint of cinnamon!
So, I spend all my spare time between studies to cultivate a teeny-tiny garden and put up the harvest.
On the day I received my engineering degree, I knew I had made a mistake.
Although I loved technology, it did not consume me the way my garden and kitchen did.
My true passion was in flavorful food, organic gardening and in knowing where my food was coming from.
So…I worked by day as an engineer while going back to school at night.
I studied sustainable horticulture and professional culinary arts. And I then went through training to become a Master Food Preserver.
Today, I live with my husband and two teenage sons on a tiny piece of land in Los Angeles. We have a whole lot of edible plants, 5 chickens supplying fresh eggs and we eat some pretty delicious meals.
And I work as a TV Producer and on-air canning expert for PBS.
But it hasn’t all been fun and games.
A few years ago, I had little detour with cancer. As odd as this may sound…I feel grateful for the experience.
Cancer changed me in a good way, gave me more perspective and ignited my desire to connect with others on the same farm-fresh path that I was on.
Today, I am healthy and thankful.
Here are a few odd facts about me:
- I use a fake name at Starbucks. So if you work there and see me later at the park, I won’t answer when you wave and call out that name. (Yes, it has happened.)
- I don’t wait to use “the good” dishes because every day is special.
- I collect vintage aprons and actually wear them…with Levis…while gardening.
- I grew up hanging out with my Dad and big brothers, so I know how to bag my own dinner, field dress a deer, fix things around the house and use power tools.
- I can shoot a mean game of trap (clay target practice).
- My biggest weakness is chocolate…like Amella’s gray sea salt caramel with cocoa butter. Oh baby!
- I fell in love with my husband when I witnessed his integrity and character first hand. He has taught me patience and how to tackle big obstacles as a team…always.
You can learn more about my gig as a PBS TV Producer and On-Air Canning Expert in my formal bio HERE.
I grow food a little differently than most people do.
I believe food plots can be productive and beautiful.
I have always grown edibles in my 1/10th of an acre homestead as ornamental plants to showcase their shape and color. In other words, I foodscape instead of landscape my garden.
I plant in drifts rather than rows and my vegetable garden is English Cottage Style with a blending of flowers to draw in the pollinators.
At any given time, I have 55 different culinary herbs, 50 different vegetables, several potted citrus trees, and 5 espaliered apple trees lining the property. I regularly share about growing a lot of food without a lot of space.
A Restoration Project
I am currently going through a crash course on farming and canning on a much larger scale.
I joined a few other family members in purchasing a run down 1892 farmstead in the gold country of Northern California.
We each took over different areas of the 14-acre restoration. I am in charge of restoring the heirloom fruit orchard (60+ trees) and the vintage kitchen garden. We are also restoring the farmhouse and well room.
I periodically share the farmstead canning projects and updates on our many, many challenges. Some cider making events are coming up as well as a feature PBS episode on the restoration. Stay tuned!