This is a great time of the year to be in Sitka. The fish are running, gardens are starting to produce, and berries are ripe for the picking.
Many Sitka residents have pressure canners to preserve their harvest, and this weekend Sarah Lewis of the Juneau District Office of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service is in town to teach four classes about canning on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the Sitka Kitch (a rental community commercial kitchen at First Presbyterian Church, 505 Sawmill Creek Road, note, all classes are full). She also provide free pressure canner gauge testing at the Sitka Farmers Market from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 18, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall.
“People can bring the gauge or the lid with the gauge still attached,” Sarah said about the pressure canner gauge testing. “If they have any questions about the full canner (gaskets, damage, how to use, etc.) they can bring the whole thing.”
In addition to testing pressure canner gauges, Sarah plans to work with Jasmine Shaw of the Sitka District Office of the UAF Cooperative Extension Service to have a wide variety of publications available about home canning. In addition, the UAF Cooperative Extension Service has a series of online tutorials on its website called “Preserving Alaska’s Bounty.” Pressure canner gauges should be tested at least once a year to make sure they are hitting the right pressures for safe food preservation.
A reminder about the Sitka Farmers Market, due to health codes we can’t allow any pets other than licensed service dogs in the ANB Hall or the parking lot. We also don’t allow smoking at the Sitka Farmers Market (in ANB Hall or the parking lot) because this is a health event.
Also, if you are in Sitka and you can’t make the pressure canner gauge testing event at the Sitka Farmers Market, you can call Jasmine Shaw at 747-9440 at the Sitka office of the UAF Cooperative Extension Service to set up a time when you can stop by and have her test your gauge in the office. She now has a gauge and is trained on using it.
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