Almanack Contributor Pat Banker

Pat Banker

Pat Banker is a Community Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension Franklin County. She is a Certified Master Food Preservation Instructor, 4H youth program educator, Wild Edibles Instructor, and a life-long Adirondack resident.


Monday, April 16, 2018

Wild Gardening: Delicious Dandelions

Early spring dandelionWeeks before the soil warms enough to plant most garden favorites but those vegetables agreeable to cool weather, there are many delicious, healthy, and useful wild edibles available – if one knows where to look.

One of the earliest to appear is the dandelion, taraxacum officinale. As soon as the ground is friable, look for the early signs of emerging dandelions. Dig up the roots, remove the crowns, wash with a vegetable brush to remove soil. If the root has been harvested while the soil is still very cool, they may be lightly peeled, and prepared as most root vegetables by adding to soups or steaming until tender. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, September 9, 2017

Harvest Time Canning Safety Tips

canning suppliesIt’s harvest time. Tomatoes, corn, beets, carrots, peppers and other fruits and vegetables are readily available from farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and your own gardens. Preserving the bounty safely for the winter can be economical, delicious, and safe if laboratory tested rules for food preservation are followed.

Since 1994, testing facilities, universities and the USDA tested recipes and directions used in food preservation books seven times in different areas of the country and under different conditions to assure that directions to be used would assure the product canned would be shelf stable, nutritious, flavorful, and free from both food spoiling bacterium and deadly bacterium such as clostridium botulinum-botulism. It was found that many canning instructional materials were not safe. » Continue Reading.