Posts Tagged: Brenda Roche
One of the 18 trainees in Los Angeles County's newly revived Master Food Preserver program is Los Angeles Times blogger Rachael Narins, who has promised her readers tips and highlights as she completes the 12-week training session.
Increasing interest in home gardening and sustainable eating has renewed enthusiasm for what was a dying art 10 years ago, when the program was discontinued in Los Angeles County. This spring, 56 applicants were willing to pay the $120 fee and commit to volunteering a minimum of 30 hours in order to receive the food preservation training.
After just the first class, Narins is already beginning the public education process. The program started, she wrote, where any reputable cooking course begins, with a lecture on safety and sanitation.
In the coming weeks the class will cover specific types of canning and what’s in season. She reported that the L.A. County Master Food Preservers will have a website and Facebook page up soon.
Master Food Preserver Ernest Miller, a formally trained chef, is the primary instructor for the LA county program (Photo: Felecia Friesema)
In what is probably a natural outgrowth of the emerging vegetable gardening and local food movement, Los Angeles County UC Cooperative Extension is bringing back a Master Food Preserver program.
The program was discontinued 10 years ago when home canning fell out of favor in modern kitchens. Interest has rebounded. A story in the LA Weekly blog Squid Ink says Master Food Preserver Ernest Miller and UC Cooperative Extension nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor Brenda Roche will relaunch the program in March.
Like Master Gardeners, Master Food Preservers are volunteers who receive in-depth training from UC Cooperative Extension experts then share their knowledge with the general public. Miller will teach the 12-week series to approximately 15 students at the UC Cooperative Extension office in East Los Angeles.
"The class is truly amazing, it covers every aspect of safe food preservation from canning to pressure canning, of course, but also freezing, dehydration, curing, smoking, fermentation and brewing," Miller was quoted. "It is a hands-on class and nearly every week the participants will make and take home various preserved products."
Miller a chef at The Farmer's Kitchen, a project of the non-profit Sustainable Economic Enterprises, which manages eight farmer's markets in LA. He earned his Master Food Preserver designation form UC Cooperative Extension in San Bernardino County and also recently became a UC Master Gardener.
Miller writes a blog about home food preservation, PreserveNation
LA Master Food Preserver applicants will be selected for the program based on their prior food preservation, culinary and volunteer experience, the article said. The students must pay a $120 class fee and commit to a minimum of 30 hours of volunteer work per year.
Home canning is once again growing in popularity.
We Americans like our sweets and fats, plus they're convenient and cheap, conditions that that don't bode well for a society suffering from an obesity crisis, according to UC Cooperative Extension nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor Brenda Roche.
Roche shared these sentiments with millions of Americans on the National Public Radio program Marketplace this week. The story dealt with the higher cost of healthy calories vs. empty calories. Roche said she teaches youth in her nutrition classes that junk food costs can add up too.
"When we talk with youth and we show them when they spend about $2.50-3.50 a day on soda and snack foods after school, how much that adds up to over time -- over a year, five years, 10 years. It's just mind boggling," Roche said.
Other evidence was offered during the Marketplace piece dispelling the notion that people turn to junk food to save money. A study from the University of Buffalo found that if you reduce the cost of healthy food, shoppers use the money they save to buy more chips and cookies.
"Junk food's convenient, it tastes good. We just have a natural predisposition to like this type of food," Roche explained.
Starches, fat and sugar are significantly cheaper than lean meats, fresh fruits and vegetables.