Do you like to cook or do you want to learn a new kitchen skill? Last weekend, my college-aged daughter and I took the Pickling Class at Love Apple Farms in Santa Cruz. In this hands-on class, we spent four hours learning about canning and pickling science while we tried three pickling recipes: pickled beets, pickled dilled beans, and pickled bread-and-butter zucchini. The class of 17 students was divided into small groups, with each group having its own set of propane burners, pots, and utensils. Cynthia Sandberg, owner of Love Apple Farms, walked us through the recipes and techniques and then turned us loose to divide and conquer the recipes.
During the class, we learned a lot of new things, such as the proper width for zucchini slices (3/8”), what to do if you don’t have a canning rack (use a towel), and what type of vinegar works best (5% white vinegar). The best part, though, was spending time with my daughter in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. It was educational too—especially for me, as I learned that my daughter certainly knows her way around the kitchen!
Love Apple Farms, which grows 300 different varieties of organic fruits, vegetables, herbs, and edible flowers at the only certified biodynamic farm in Santa Cruz County, offers an extensive selection of cooking and farming classes, such as cheese making, planning your garden, canning, growing herbs, and bread making.
The Love Apple classes are appropriate for older teens and adults, but you should verify the minimum recommended age when you register for a specific class. If you have younger kids, you might want to look for cooking classes through your local parks and recreation department or check out Cucina Bambini in the Willow Glen neighborhood of San Jose.
Love Apple Farms
2317 Vine Hill Road
1041 Lincoln Avenue
San Jose, CA