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Northern Gardening

  • 2nd Thursday 7-8pm
  • and following Saturday at 6am
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Recipes | Local Food on the North Shore

Northern Gardening covers a variety of gardening topics relevant to our northern climate. The program airs on the second Thursday of each month from 7-8 p.m. and is rebroadcast the following Saturday at 6 a.m. The program is a partnership between the Northwoods Food Project, the Cook County U of MN Extension Office, and WTIP.

The Northwood's Food Project is a non-profit organization who's purpose is to increase Cook County's long term food sustainability and self-reliance by eating and growing locally produced food.

Learn more about the partnership between WTIP, the Northwoods Food Project, and the Cook County U of MN Extension Office that makes Northern Gardening possible.

Jeanne Wright and daughter Olya, Diane Booth, and Melinda Spinler in the WTIP studio for Northern Gardening.

What's On:

Learn about berries and Fruits

 Growing fruits and berries was discussed on Northern Gardening March 18. It will be rebroadcast at 6 a.m. Saturday, March 20.
Here are two recipes for preserving apples  submitted by Kristine Bottorff, a member of the Northwooods Food Project who was on the program this week. She is pictured making cider with her husband (right) and Ben and Korey Steckelberg last fall.
Here are Kristine's recipes:

From "The Big Book of Preserving the Harvest" by Carol Costenbader:

Ginger Jam

2 lemons
8 medium-sized tart apples, peeled, cored, and sliced, about 7 cups
2 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon ground ginger
6 cups sugar
1/2 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped

1. Peel the lemons, reserving the zest.  Cut the peeled lemons in half and squeeze the juice. Reserve the juice.
2. In an 8-quart saucepan, cook the apples, water, lemon zest, lemon juice, and ground ginger until the apples are soft.  Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.
3. Boil the mixture rapidly for 15 minutes, stirring frequently, until a candy thermometer reaches 220 degrees F.
4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the crystallized ginger.  Skim off any foam and let stand for 10 minutes.
5. Pour it into clean jars, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace.  Cap and seal.
6. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling water bath canner.


Enough apples to nearly fill your biggest stock pot
Lemon juice
sweetener, your choice

1. Scrub apples with a brush.  Cut out bad spots and cut into pieces into the stock pot. The smaller the pieces, the shorter the cooking time.  Removing stems and knocking at least some of the seeds out makes the later processing easier.
2. Add enough water to keep the bottom from scorching while it cooks (typically 1/2 C - 1 C).  Cook, stirring often, until apples are evenly soft.
3. Remove from heat. It may be easier to let the apples cool some before the next step. Get remaining ingredients and canning equipment ready.
4. Process apples through a food mill to remove peelings, seeds and core material.  This is a good "kid helper" job.  Return to the stock pot on medium heat.
5. Add lemon juice, cinnamon and sweetener to taste.  I usually use 2 tsp. cinnamon and 1/4 C lemon juice. Sweetener really depends on the kind and ripeness of the apples.  Stir often while it heats, carefully; boiling applesauce can cause burns. A flat-bladed wooden paddle is a good tool for this. It doesn't need to cook, but it does need to be hot enough not to expand more after it's in the jar.
6. Ladle into clean, hot quart or pint jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Cap and seal. Process in a boiling water bath canner for 20 minutes (both sizes).



Dave Steckelberg talks about the GardenShare program on Northern Gardening

northern gardening_feb18_2010.mp313.71 MB

Dave Steckelberg, above, has been participating in the GardenShare program for four seasons. He is pictured in the red cabbage patch in his garden. He was interviewed on the Northern Gardening show recently and  talks about his experience with the GardenShare, a program of the Northwoods Food Project.

Learn more about the GardenShare program.

Find out about available garden spaces.

Can you help? Find out where folks have requested garden space.