All this last week I have been preparing for today’s Central OC food swap. Well not so much prep as trying to use up the 35lbs of produce that I was able to get for a steal from a friend. So all week I have been making Dilly beans (pickled green beans), spicy pickles, ginger garlic pickles, Bread and Butter Zucchini pickles, and some canned tomatoes. This was mainly all so that I could use up all that produce before it went bad. Even still, there was a decent amount of green beans and zucchini that went to my neighbors.
So on to the Food Swap, given that I now have an apartment full of pickled vegetables the bulk of what I brought was pickled zucchini and dilly beans along with a hand full of herb and balsamic port jelly.
What makes these food swaps so great is the sense of community. Every food swap I go to I walk away with a load of new foods and new friends. The food swap not only allows people to showcase what they have made and grown but it’s also built a community. Every food swap I walk away with new friends, new connections, things that you certainly can’t get at the grocery store.
So here is what I walked away with: multiple chocolate cupcakes a few cookies, kombucha, pickles, ketchup, salsas, hollandaise sauce, lavender sugar scrub, fresh produce, spare canning lids and a lovely selection of chutneys. I have spent my evening sampling a little bit of everything and let me just say, I am in a very happy place.
So some of the kombucha I picked up was a starter kit. I love kombucha, and am a little excited about making my own batch here. I say a little only because my kefir experiment failed…miserably. So much so that I am afraid to open up the containers. The reason it failed for me was that I had to feed it regularly, roughly every few days and for me that was just too hard, I have enough critters to feed and a garden to tend to. It just became another pet. The kambucha is a lot less management from what I have read so far. But that’s the good thing about the swap, all it cost me was a jar of pickles. (and right now I have plenty of those)