My 11 year old is quite the foodie. He loves to bake and cook and he’s not afraid of flavour. The kid loves spicy things and is generally pretty adventurous when it comes to eating.
One of his favourite things to do when we go to a farmers’ market is walk around browsing, trying out all the different samples. Then he comes to fetch me and tells me what to buy. Sadly, I can’t buy everything he wants, but we always walk away with a few tasty treats.
We’ve been to the new Fairmout Park Farmers’ Market a few times. The first time we were there, he found some pickled beans from Manning Canning and he just had to have them. I admit I was intrigued so we got a jar of pickled beans as well as some pickled garlic and some jam. Let me tell you, we went through all three jars before we knew it. “Muuumm, when can we get some more pickled beans?” has been a regular question around here ever since.
If I ever win the lottery, I will do all my shopping at local farmers’ markets. You just don’t get the same quality and freshness anywhere else. I also like for my kids to have an understanding of where food comes from. As we walk around browsing at the farmers’ markets, I always ask the vendors where their farm is, and this often leads to a nice little chat. Interesting little facts about the farms, farmers, and even the equipment they use all come out.
This gets the kids excited about food in a different way than they would normally be. They can’t wait to get home and gobble up all the fresh foods we’ve just bought. They just don’t get that excited about the grocery store.
I did promise the kids that we could get some more pickled beans, but then realized that we wouldn’t be able to do so until next week. So I had a brilliant idea. We would make our own.
Mr. FamilyNature dug out all my canning supplies from the cold room, my 11yo went out to pick the beans from the garden, and I looked up a recipe. (This also led to many questions: What is pickling spice? What’s the difference between pickling salt and regular salt? How long do pickled beans have to sit before you can eat them? Thank goodness for the interwebs for answering all my pickling questions!) Were all set.
The end result? They look great. I’ll let you know how they taste in a couple of weeks.
And by the way, rumour has it that Manning Canning will be at Fairmount Park Farmers’ Market next week (August 7). I don’t need pickled beans now but my 11yo will surely find something else interesting to try!