Wholly Canadian is a social enterprise promoting whole-life local living
...a breath of fresh air for those with a heart for local /fair-trade living, & inspiration for those intrigued...

Wholly Canadian Blog

Friday, September 05, 2014

Preserve & Serve--Local Style

This year I've had the most joyous time putting away preserves! Care to know why?

I'm employing the ancient practice of lacto-fermentation/ culturing. No canner. No heat. No sweat!

I just simply place my veggies in a jar with whey & salt. I let them cutlure for a period of time, and then place them in a fridge or cold room. Simply put, this is traditional food. . .this is the way my great grandmother would have preserved her food prior to modern conveniences.

Traditional Foods are becoming a part of my rhythm. Are you interested in learning more about Traditonal Foods?

made in canada cucumbers

These jars of pickles tell a story. . .through two aspects of Wholly Canadian's shopping paradigm of goodwill:


Firstly, local. My garden: heirloom cucs, onions, cabbage leaf to hold the cucs down, and oak-leaf to keep the cucs naturally crisp.  Garden marketJardins St-Leon Gardens--I purchased some cucs, dill, and garlic at this local garden market. 

(Side note: anyone know if one can obtain mustard seed grown in Canada?) 

cucumbers made in canada


Secondly, used. All my canning jars are from MCC thrift shops. All my jars are made in Canada.  Canada no longer makes glass jars, so these vintage jars are are a real keeper. Instead of using the rust-prone snap lids, I use the original glass tops along with the rubber rings. While the first objective of preserving food is to nourish my family during the long winter months, I also am so amazed how much I enjoy the beauty of preserves. During these last 24 hours I have marveled over and over again at God's gracious bounty towards us when I look at the simple beauty on my kitchen counter.


Lacto-fermented veggies are not only a simple way of preserving food, but is also nutrient-dense compared to canning.  Did you know that canning destroys the nutrients in food, whereas culturing food increases enzymes? You are eating live food! But not just live, but also rich in probiotics--the kind of stuff that makes your gut healthy! And a healthy gut belongs to a healthy person!

  • Interested in adding some traditional food skills in your diet?
  • Care to unearth some practices your great-grandmother would have used in her kitchen? 
  •        Want to deliciously eat your way to healthy?

Right now Wholly Canadian is offering two traditional-food courses

1) bubbly drinks and creams for the whole family; and 
2) sourdough: goodness gracious grains!

Space is limited, so make sure to register soon!

made in canada cucumbers


Back to Jardin St-Leon Gardens. . .

The customer service their is top notch. Each person (and I've been there countless times), is so friendly, and they look like you are doing them a favour if you have a question! I always drive away amazed because we live in a day and age when pleasant customer-service is the exception. I recently took my father there,  and he was of course  pleasantly rewarded with many friendly youthful smiles and chit chat. He really hit it off with a young male personnel when discussing apple pastries. {It made me giggle}.

I just bought a case of peaches from Jardin St-Leon Gardens that I want to put into the freezer--but only after blanching the peaches. My mother-in-law is going to come over and show her tried-and-true method of blanching peaches. A few years back, I put peaches in the freezer without blanching and without a syrup. I thought this treatment was for those who wanted extra work. Ha! Mush in the freezer. . 

Well, I was deciding how many peaches to purchase while talking with a few Jardin St-Leon employees, and a young gal really impressed me with her customer service by offering me a variety of options for pick-up, ordering organic, etc. As she rung me through, she chatted with my baby in the cart, and then offered to help me to my car with my purchases. I asked her what her name was, and she said, Jen. So Jen, here's to you!

Update: Here's a pic of the peaches. . .blanched and in a light honey syrup ready for the freezer!

What's the name of your favourite garden market?

Posted by Proof Reader at 7:00 AM


St. Leon is my favourite garden market. I am cheered by their colourful emails and I am wowed by the quality of their customer service and great product.
September 6, 2014 2:06 PM By Valerie Tonner
Your staff is very helpful,and very pleasent, I will for keep shopping here. Keep up the good work.
September 6, 2014 2:27 PM By Juliette baker
I have enjoyed going for my vegetable , they are always fresh, the staff is very helpfull and very pleasant .. U I will miss you guys this winter,
September 6, 2014 5:49 PM By Juliette baker
I always get my vegetables from St.Leon market there the best.
September 6, 2014 8:32 PM By Simone Desharnais
Wonderful to see such a great response to St. Leon's garden market! It's great to know there are other shoppers committed to local!
September 6, 2014 9:34 PM By admin
Wonderful to see such a great response to St. Leon's garden market! It's great to know there are other shoppers committed to local!
September 6, 2014 9:34 PM By admin
There is also the Good Food Club, based in the W. Broadway area. They have a small veggie/honey/herb market on (this year) Wed afternoons from 4-6:30, on the Thompson Funeral home lot (cor Sherbrook and Broadway West). You pay $25 for membership ($5 for low income) and are rewarded with ultra-fresh goodies from the farm. You can also volunteer to work on the farm! Thru the year they host community dinners for people in the area. A wonderful organization, tho the window of opportunity to purchase is limited.
September 6, 2014 11:21 PM By Lynne
Every year when I go there in spring to get all my garden stuff the owner greets me with the friendliest of smiles as if he had been standing there waiting for me. Thank you , Ms. Jardin
September 7, 2014 3:44 PM By jim
We grow our own garden. This is handy - I am always too intimidated to do the whole canning process but this looks so much easier & faster!
September 11, 2014 9:14 AM By Christy E
I believe Canada is one of the biggest producers of mustard in the world, you should be able to source some locally I would think.
September 11, 2014 10:46 AM By Brad K
Peaches and cucumbers look delicious! We utilize the produce from my garden instead of a farmer's market. Gardening is economical, convenient and fun.
September 14, 2014 3:59 PM By Linda
I always feel so accomplished after preserving a batch of something. And there is something so satisfying knowing you can feed yourself through the winter months
September 18, 2014 10:08 PM By Laura D
my favourite local one would be Yellow Barn,not only fresh local produce but a small cafe with homemade style food made with local produce and foods.
September 29, 2014 9:56 AM By Silvia D

Post a Comment:



Website (optional):