Thursday, 4 February 2010

A new challenge

We are attempting to purchase mostly 'Canadian' groceries.

Obviously, there will be exceptions - COFFEE for one.

But after doing some research, and finding how many 'Canadian' products are not actually Canadian, we are going to change our habits.

In order for a product to be "product of Canada," it only needs to be produced here. As in, Apples can be turned into concentrate oversees, shipped to Canada, and turned into Apple Juice with the 'Canadian' stamp on it.

ok, so how are we doing this:
  • I already make all or our jam and jelly, and most of the time, the fruit comes from local farms.
  • I already can peaches & pears at the end of the summer, product of Ontario
  • I tried to make a sourdough starter a few months back, which was a dismal failure. BUT, I think that that is because our house gets too cold during the day. I'm going to try again in the spring.

Alright, so we have left meat and veggies.

Meat, well, I don't have quite enough land for a farm. BUT, we can look into buying large chunks of meat from local farmers.

Veggies. I'm looking into a pressure canner. Then I can either grow & can, or go to the farmers market & can.

Locally, we have:

  • An Apple farm up the road about five km. Did you know that if you store Apples properly, they can keep until June? I bought a 1/2 bushel in November, and they just ran out. Not a single one rotted
  • A Strawberry farm, about 7 km away
  • a three hour drive away, we can get to the Niagara region, famous for it's 'soft fruits' (Or, these come into our grocery stores in late summer)

In the past, we've had success growing:

  • Pumpkins. Still have tons in the freezer.
  • Tomatoes

But, we have tons of space for a garden. I'd like to try a variation of the 'square foot gardening' this summer. Veggies I hope to put in include:

  • Tomatoes
  • Peas
  • Winter Squash
  • Green Beans
  • Potatoes
  • English Cucumbers
  • Pickling Cucumbers

And on the property, we have Apple trees suitable for Apple Butter, and a few Black Currant Bushes. The Black Currants can be propagated, and I think that they need to be moved so that they are in more sun.

We also have a food dehydrator, which is another method of preserving. Dehydrated food is good for taking camping, sailing, hiking, etc. Buddy like dried apples, which are healthy (it's just an apple... nothing added), and clean (think toddler with juicy apple.... yup.)

1 comment:

  1. Do you have access to a local butcher like our Brothers Meats here? They use locally raised meats, and also produce their own fresh made deli meats, and are cheaper than the cheap crap at the grocery stores. You haven't had a hot dog til you've had one fresh made with real food. The other option is to find a farm that raises beef, pork, etc, that lets you buy a side, or a whole, or half a side, they have it slaughtered and butchered (to your specs). I have a meat grinder here to grind your own pork if you can find one of these farms. (We have tons here that do it, that used to be the only meat I got was fresh from a farm) Seeing as a side usually lasts the average family months, you could think about ordering here if you don't find something satisfactory, and coming to visit and picking it up. We have some really good beef farms here.


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