The idea of “Christmas in July” isn’t really a modern marketing ploy. Summer has always been the time of abundance — and of preserving that abundance for the cold months ahead. Whenever you dry herbs, can vegetables or cook up fruit preserves, you are giving yourself a future gift of homegrown and homemade goodness. This summer, as you visit farmers markets and gardens for farm-fresh ingredients to preserve, why not plan on getting a little of your Christmas shopping done at the same time? Watch the video above for ways you can start Christmas season projects during the growing season. Visit PickTNProducts.org or use the free Pick TN mobile app to find farmers markets near you and for a chart to convert farm measures like bushels and pecks to kitchen measures like quarts and gallons.
Originally from Starkville, Miss., Tammy Algood is a viticulture and wholesale produce specialist for the Tennessee Department of Agriculture's Market Development Division. She has a Bachelor’s of Science from Mississippi State University and a Master’s from Middle Tennessee State University. She writes about food for The Tennessean and monthly for The Tennessee Magazine. As the spokesperson for the statewide “Pick Tennessee Products” campaign, Tammy also develops recipes for their website at www.picktnproducts.org. Broadcast appearances include Nashville’s local ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates as well as statewide on PBS. Tammy can also be seen nationally on the HGTV and DIY networks.