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From Ball Jars To The Banquet Table… – Episode 020

logoDo you look at those jars and jars … and jars … of tomatoes or green beans that you put up last year when your harvest was bountiful and wonder how in the world you’re going to abide shoving another fork of plain tomatoes or green beans into your mouth? Wouldn’t it be great if you could figure out a way to make the dishes you cook from your harvest EXPLODE with flavor? You can do that, and much more! Listen in as Bill and Brian interview chef Keith Snow, the man behind the thought, product development and creation of Thoughtful Harvest food products.


Off The Grid Radio
Released: November 5, 2010

Welcome to Off the Grid Radio, better ideas to bust you and your family out of today’s global control grid. Now here is today’s show.

Brian: Ladies and gentlemen welcome back once again to the radio version of Off the Grid News, I’m Brian Brawdy here as always with Mr. Bill Heid. Bill I have to tell you I am very excited about today’s show for a couple different reasons, one we have a chef as a guest. It might be the first time I think we’ve ever had a chef.

Bill: First time yes.

Brian: First time chef as a guest, and I’ve told you this a lot off air so I will do it a little bit on air just to give folks how our relationship plays out. I’ve learned a lot from you over the years and you could probably say Brian give me your top 10 list of things that you’ve learned from me and I’d say okay great what do you think I’ve learned from you Bill? But the contents of today’s show, you’re going to laugh but this is one of my highlights of all the things that you – and I know you’re already smiling, you’re already making fun of me. Well this is one of the things that I’ve personally not only learned but it took me back to my grandparents and I’m really digging it. Do you have any clue what it is that I think has been one of my top five things that you have taught me?

Bill: Well, we sent you and our producer Jeramy on a mission to Alabama and does it have anything to do with the mission you were on? Was it possible?

Brian: When you said mission it made me think of Aykroyd and Belushi – what was that, the Blues Brothers. That’s like hey, you’re on a mission or we are on a mission. It does in fact and I think a lot of people are going to be surprised but one of my two passions and I even chuckle when I say it but for a lot of reasons, and a lot of serious reasons using local harvest, preparing survival kind of food storage, knowing what you’re eating but one of my new passions is canning.

Bill: Well, and as it should be. I mean we sent you down there to document and our listeners will find out soon that we’ve got a brand-new set or series of canning tips and it’s instructional. And I think you’re saying from talking to you, you think it’s the best thing we’ve ever done, the best thing on canning, the best…

Brian: Yes, it’s the best video that I’ve been involved with here and I’ve been involved with a few of them for our listeners that can put a face to a name. I’ve been involved with a few of them, I think this will be not only the most informative and fun to watch DVD series on the market today when it comes to canning but I think they are going to learn a ton of stuff, I know I did from Hannah, I really did.

Bill: Well, we sit you down there to do this and I think kind of some of it stuck you know how that thing is I think you went down there probably without the intent of learning how to can, you went down there on a job.

Brian: Well yeah, you’re my boss. Remember when you first called me and said hey I’m setting this up on canning and I said I think I’m going to have West Nile that week, send Jeramy and Dan, send somebody else.

Bill: Yeah, and when you got down there you totally turned around.

Brian: You told me to, yeah absolutely.

Bill: You totally turned around.

Brian: Yeah, it was a great assignment.

Bill: Of course Hannah and David are part of why that is because they’re fabulous people that are going to take us through the canning but the good news is we’ve got this new canning video that is going to replace the old one. And the old one is getting dated, we made it a while back ago because you know years ago we came to the same conclusion we wanted people to know how to can and this echoes with what Deborah St. Clair had mentioned to us in a previous interview.

Brian: Right.

Bill: What did she say? She said the kids don’t want to learn what their grandparents have to say. They want to move to the city and engage in some kind of urban lives that allows them a sense of anonymity and so forth. They do not want to take on the traditions and this is not just true as Deborah St. Clair taught us, it is not just true here in the United States, it is true all over the world that the younger people tend to pooh-pooh on what their parents and grandparents have to say so we made this canning tape years ago and we made it up at the Methodist Church in Stockton and it just got dated. Some people would say to us you know yeah your content was good but you know the production, the year and so forth so we took those criticisms seriously and we sent you guys down there and we are grateful and I said to Hannah, Hannah you look at this – she’s an expert in canning.

Brian: Oh, isn’t she.

Bill: Yeah, and then look at this video over and over and over and I want you to beat it. I want you to take it and beat it badly in content and quality and anything you could. And we are proud of the old tape that we had, the old tape that we had, the old video that we had but I think what I hear from you, she did just that.

Brian: Well, she’s brilliant on camera, she made it and you know I’m not the sharpest knife in the drawer or the things that I know that I’ve studied for all of these years that she took it to a topic that I had no clue Bill as you know when I walked in there, I was still kind of kicking my heels because you had sent me there. I said really, Jeramy and I got lost, we drove around…

Bill: Your first hotel, remember?

Brian: And Jeramy putting his personal 0:05:09.7…

Bill: Your first hotel, remember? You guys had to check back out.

Brian: We had to check back out because I don’t know, Jeramy – I don’t know what he saw running across the floor…

Bill: I thought it was roaches.

Brian: Something about roaches but we had to run out like the big bedbug story down in New York but it was like oh here we go and then you know horses I think greeted us – that’s when we’re pulling up and I’m like alright I’m going to get Heid back when I get back to Thompson I’m going to like hit him from behind or something. But I had the time of my life, you’re right Dave is a great guy and into living off the land and Hannah is a spiritual person and a beautiful person, a beautiful woman and I paid attention. She got me passionate about – which is why I’m so…

Bill: You got drug into it.

Brian: Well, you know what happens is and Bill you’ve had a blessed life; I’ve grown up in the city. I’m not sure I’ve ever eaten tomatoes with no preservatives in them.

Bill: Sure.

Brian: I’m not sure, some of the stuff that came out of those jars and I remember Jeramy looking at me because I’m on camera and we didn’t cut because I wanted it in that she would hand me spoonfuls of things to eat and I’m putting my hand up to the camera going old this is too good to talk through, hold on I’ll get back to you here in a second. I’m not sure I’ve ever had food like that which is why I am so excited about our guest today and then later segments as well is that I’ve been bitten by this but now – not the cockroach that Jeremy had in his hotel room down there but bitten by the bug that is canning so I know I say all of the time that I’m fired up about our products but I’m really hoping that the people that see our website that come and listen to our shows will be as fired up about this is I am because I learned something I had no clue about and I’m passionate about it now.

Bill: But there’s a game within a game and here’s the game. Recently we just made some salsa and I think I gave you some salsa you like that.

Brian: I loved it.

Bill: So here’s a situation at my household, my father right…

Brian: Right.

Bill: And myself and my children, I had all of my kids back and my grandchildren are all making salsa and we’re making it from the vegetables that we grew so we have the ability to – we used ProtoGrow and some of the other products that we have – we try to grow nutritionally dense foods which is something else, that’s another show about how do you grow nutritionally dense foods. But we try to grow foods that are good for you and then all of this what really happens, the canning is great, we’re an advocate of it for survival purposes and other purposes for having control sure, but here is the game within the game. The game within the game is the fellowship time that you have with your family and sort of trying to teach them and let them have a piece of you because we’re all going to die. And my kids and my grandkids came back and a couple of them had not experienced this before because they live a ways away so when they came back this time and we made this salsa they were just – everyone was all smiles. Now is it a lot of work? Oh we spent, there’s a troop of Heid’s and we spent all day working on this. My dad and myself and we’re cutting it stuff and it’s a lot of work but everybody is smiling, working together, laboring together for this and then to see those jars when you’re done how beautiful they are with all the different colored peppers and everything in them and then to get a jar out during a football game out or something and have a few chips, it’s just a delight, it’s really beyond belief.

Brian: Well, you don’t know this because you weren’t there but Sarah our executive producer was invited to your little shindig and she was like my kids are so excited and I go what have you got going on this weekend? And she goes we’re going to go over to my dad’s and we’re going to make salsa and you could see the look in her face.

Bill: She was looking forward to it.

Brian: She was looking forward to it and the kids were fired up about it and everyone so I get it for all kinds of reasons I’m fired up about today’s show.

Bill: It’s a great thing and then what we talk about with Keith is you’ve got a pantry, now you’ve got a pantry full of canned foods.

Brian: Right.

Bill: So now you’ve got bitten by the bug. You actually do it, you learn about it and now what?

Brian: Yeah.

Bill: Because do you want it just to be a commodity, do you want it just to be staples or do you want to turn your food into a banquet and that is the beauty of the next segment of the show.

Brian: Right, I love your term banquet; it makes me think from the Ball jars to the banquet table.

Bill: Yeah, yeah.

Brian: Because you look at this, it looks on science project. You know, you look at chicken that has been canned or jarred, it looks like something I dissected when I was in third grade so I’m very glad that we can turn it into a banquet and our guest today is going to teach us how to do just that but Bill if it’s cool with you we’re going to go ahead and run to a radio break that we’ve got to hit. And then when we come back chef Keith Snow will be with us and he’s going to go ahead and put a little bit of, a little bit of the guts if you will of what Bill and I have been talking about in the first segment. Ladies and gentlemen a quick break, when you come back to Off the Grid News the radio version of our show you’ll have a chance to learn from chef Keith Snow. We’ll be back after the break.

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Brian: Ladies and gentlemen welcome back once again to the radio version of our show and Bill as you know in our first segment we were talking about you know kind of like Ed and Ted’s excellent adventure or Bill and Ted whoever that was, I’m a little older but Jeramy and I got to go down and visit with a young lady and her husband that taught us the fine art of canning and I would say my grandmother do it, I would see my parents do it and I always thought oh aren’t those the jars you use like to store nuts and bolts in out in the garage?

Bill: Yeah what are all of those jars for?

Brian: What are all of those jars for and my grandfather used to like screw the lids into like a 2 x 4 and it hung and then he would just unscrew the jar.

Bill: Oh and so he would use them for that.

Brian: He would use them for that and so that’s all I thought it was about and someone said to me you have right before the show oh the Ball jars and I’m like pardon me, I’m sorry I don’t understand any of that so I’m really excited to introduce our next guest given that Jeramy and I had such a blast as we discussed earlier. And I think it’s something that I could really be fired up about doing and Hannah was doing meats and all kinds of cool stuff so let’s go ahead and get to it. Here I wanted to welcome a chef, a cookbook author and a creator, the creator of He’s the man behind not only the product conception but the design, positioning and the formulation of Thoughtful Harvest food products, the entire line. Ladies and gentlemen say hello to Mr. Keith Snow. Keith how are you sir?

Keith: I’m great guys how are you guys doing?

Bill: Never better.

Brian: Never better and thank you so much. Bill and I both last evening had a chance to taste some of your great work, it was fantastic.

Bill: Your sauces are wonderful Keith and thank you very much for sending them over for us to try. We recommend that if you get a chance to buy some of this stuff, buy it because it’s the stuff that’s going into it and I guess we can talk about it later huh Brian?

Brian: Sure.

Bill: Keith if we could, as Brian said we’re kind of segwaying from a little talk about the canning adventure Jeramy and Ted Brawdy over there that they had you known down in Alabama.

Brian: Dude…

Bill: I sent them on, exactly.

Brian: Dude…

Bill: And so what, I mean you’ve worked with Ball jars for a number of years what can you tell us about canning, the history of canning as far as what you and your family have done. Lead us on a little more about that.

Keith: Well sure, like canning is a pretty interesting concept and it’s one of those things that look how all of us are excited about it, we’re talking about it and we’re thinking wow this is great and this is something that is not new, is not you know breaking news or anything. This is something like Brian was mentioning our parents, our grandparents and generations before us have done this but in the last 50 years or so in this country in my opinion kind of went off the tracks when it comes to food production and basic diet. Great things like canning have kind of gone by the wayside but the good news is since the early I would say the early 2000’s, 2003, 4, it started to come back and it has come back really very strongly. As a matter of fact the Ball jar company it’s self and I don’t know the exact statistics but they were really down on their luck for the last 20 years or so because people just stopped canning except for the grandmas and the people that had been doing it. But as time’s ticked on and a lot of the older folks have you know basically died not too many new people were picking it up. And then folks started to get interested in it again and the Ball jar company was acquired by Jaden Home Brands and Jaden has done a great job in really promoting canning and being very active about it. And canning has come on, I mean just absolutely ferociously in the last few years. They are having amazing growth rates and what’s happening is obviously you don’t need to tell your grandmother or your mother anything about canning because this is something that they were taught and that they already do that now it’s the people that live in apartments and it’s the younger folks and people who are learning all about local food and kind of getting back to the land, all of the homesteaders. These people are driving canning to become a renewed industry and it’s something that I’ve always done. My mom used to do it and I started doing it when I don’t know, I was 16, 17 years old. And I didn’t do it much through college but I started to get back into it after college. It’s a tremendous way to know what you’re eating and then also to prepare for the winter and you know there are certain times of the year – and my big thing on Harvest Eating and you know what I teach in the cookbook is seasonal cooking. And when you’re seasonal cooking generally you are forced to use local foods which is a very good thing. You know for instance around here this week and next week is the last hurrah for canning tomatoes. Now a good friend of mine Sandy, we’ll get together and fire up – I’ve got a you know a big French stove here in the farmhouse and we’ll fire that thing up and we’ll can 50, 80, maybe even 100 quarts of local tomatoes and they are super abundant right now. And at the end of the season they are very, very ripe. As the tomato plant loses its vigor, as things start to get cold it puts all its energy into making really ripe and some of the best tomatoes of the season, late-season tomatoes. And the people that grow them, there’s a lot of farmers around here that have tomatoes and they can’t use the ripe ones and what happens is they ripen so fast that we’re able to go to the farm and buy bushels, literally bushels of tomatoes for five dollars. So we’ll start canning them and you can, can all year round is not just a summer thing and that’s what I was working with the Ball jar company to really help promote. I did an event recently in July in Charlotte North Carolina and first of all you don’t need a large space to do canning, you don’t need a lot of equipment to do canning. As a matter of fact when I was working with Ball they just came out with something called the Ball canning discovery kit. And you can buy this thing before I don’t know 10 or $12 at most Lowes and hardware stores and also from their website, which is And by the way for any of your listeners, how about this we’ll do an offer, your first 10 listeners will figure it out further before the end of the show what they need to do maybe if they need to go to your page and write to your Facebook page but I have 10 canning discovery kits that I want to give away to your listeners. But these get people started virtually for no cost, you just go and buy some ingredients and this kit has 25 recipes. It comes with everything you need, the jars, the jar lifter, the rack, everything and people really need to get back into canning.

Brian: And chef if I could ask you, you said something that was interesting to me about the canning and you said you’ve got to know or the benefit of canning is that you know what’s in the food. I had a conversation with my daughter the other day, I gave her a bag – I don’t want to say the name because I’ll probably get sued but I gave her a bag of processed particular type of potato chip and then I gave her a bag of all natural chips. She could read being greedy and so on the all-natural chips and the only got to the other chips that we won’t mention, you know they were full of pheno lin o lin o lin o lin o lin o lin o line or the like so now at eight years old she’s fired up and she’s only going to want to eat something where she can read and understand the ingredients. Isn’t that a huge plus for canning as you said?

Keith: Yeah, absolutely and one of the unofficial taglines of Harvest Eating is – I think it’s in our mission or something, if you’re a second grader and you can’t read it, you don’t want to eat it. What’s happened over the last 10 to 15 years companies, you know these guys and you’ve got to picture these guys? These were, and if anybody out there is a food scientist you know let me apologize in advance but you remember those real geeky kids from high school the ones who were the nerds that nobody liked, well all of those kids they wound up becoming food scientists and now they wear a white chef coat, excuse me a white lab coat and they’ve got thick Coke bottle glasses and now they’re getting even with all of us by engineering all of this creepy stuff into our food. And you mentioned you know some of these labels and you look at these things and there’s sometimes 30, 40 different ingredients and you cannot pronounce them, there’s no way you can pronounce them. And what’s happened is take for instance salad dressing, I’m just pulling that off the top of my head unit 15 years ago salad dressing generally was all of oil, vinegar, maybe some spices and that was about it. And now you look in their and you’ve got 2 to 3 different types of gums, you’ve got 3 or 4 preservatives, you’ve got things called natural flavors and being in the food process business for a long time the word natural flavors, those can be up to I think the number the last time I checked was up to 2000 different compounds. And there’s nothing natural about them, these are all chemicals they’re all compounds and things that just fit into this classification. So when you see natural flavors, the layperson thinks oh it’s not natural flavors that they don’t know that those are produced in a lab and they could be a lot of different things so you need to read those labels and look for foods that are clean. You know potato chips, they should be oil potatoes and salt that should be it, you don’t need you know all these you know novels when you look at the ingredients it looks like a novel. You need to put that brought it down and that’s the great thing about canning. I mean let’s say you can beans you know what’s in there, you can tomatoes you know what’s in there. There’s no geeky lab guy getting back at you for poking fun of him in high school.

Brian: Well chef I won’t quote you but half the people of went with became those geeky scientists and the other half became patrolman at different places but that’s my life story. We’re going to go ahead and run to a quick break but I’d like our listeners, I’m going to plagiarize one of the chefs quotes, “if you’re a second grader who can’t read it, don’t eat it.” We’re going to go ahead and come back right after the break.

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Brian: Welcome back to Off the Grid News, Off the Grid News Radio show. Today Mr. Bill Heid along with Brian Brawdy and a very special guest, chef Keith Snow. And I was thinking Bill you know I went down there, I learned all the scanning stuff and all these different kinds of foods, I was amazed you can do meat, she was doing chicken – all these different things she could do but for me I’d open a jar and I’d stick a fork in it and that’s what eat but I thought you know what, we have a chef with us today and he has written, offered a cook book, he’s world renowned, done media all over the place so what better person to ask about after you have some of the canning products how can you turn what’s in your Ball jar into a banquet?

Bill: Exactly, that’s a great point. You know so here we are you’ve got all this stuff in your pantry now. You’ve got the tomatoes, you’ve got all of things that you’ve done.

Brian: Yeah, it’s like a science project.

Bill: You’ve worked hard all summer. Now is this going to be just a commodity because just eating those tomatoes or are you going to eat this tomatoes the way they are as we were mentioning or Keith what is a good way to take these foods as Brian was saying and turning some of your canned…

Brian: From a Ball jar to a banquet…

Bill: Exactly.

Brian: The heat’s on buddy.

Keith: Yeah, no worries. That’s also the most logical question and it’s definitely a question that people get to ultimately when they start canning. And the reason I started Harvest Eating and focus on local and seasonal foods is as the public started to change their focus and get into this, once they for instance, let’s say they went to the farmers market in the summer and they came back with a you know they have it all set up beautifully and you’re buying it right for the farmer and you always buy too much because it’s much cheaper than the store. You wind up with 15 zucchini and then people would be like oh know what it my going to do it all this stuff and that’s where I started getting massive e-mails literally from all over the planet. And I decided to categorize recipes by season to help people use seasonal ingredients and it’s no different with canning. People realize it’s a good thing, they start to get into it and then all of a sudden they got a pantry full of food. Let me give you a couple of for examples, let’s just say you have tomatoes and I always stock my pantry with ripe local tomatoes, it’s the middle of the winter let’s say it’s a couple of days before Christmas, you know the relatives come back in town the week before Christmas, there’s a lot of dinner parties, you want to impress your guests, you need to make what’s called tomato bruschetta and if an Italian here’s you say bruschetta they’re going to slap you one so you’ve got to say bruschetta. And what you do is you take a good crusty bread like a ciabatta or even a French baguette you know the kind that has good holes in it. You toast, brush a little olive oil, toasted on a grill so you have some toast marks, then you take a garlic clove and you literally rubbed the garlic clove into the toasted bread. Because the bread is firm, it’s not that Wonder Bread junk, it’s abrasive so it’s going to break down the garlic clove. Then you take your canned beautiful tomatoes, pour them into a strainer to get all of the excess moisture and this is just a tomato fillet because you’ve removed the skin. You put those tomatoes on the bread, you put a nice bit of sea salt or kosher salt, a touch of Parmesan Reggiano cheese and some of your best extra-virgin olive oil and then you serve that on the table and trust me you are an instant hero.

Bill: We’re all sitting here…

Brian: Yeah Keith, you’re on your own. We’re going to sit our headsets down, were headed out to buy tickets to your place. We need two more segments, just do it 10 min. a piece, we are out of here.

Keith: Yeah, no worries, you know I made that dish about 40 years ago for a friend and literally every time we get together as a couple my wife and then him and his wife he always request that bruschetta dish but that’s an easy way to use tomatoes. They’re great and you know it’s cold and it’s warm in the house and you want a nice suit you can make a Tuscan white bean soup, beautiful stuff in you can add those fresh tomatoes. And all of these recipes are all my website. Let me give you another example, green beans are a very popular staple in canning. Now green beans, I think we are all used to those, growing up a lot of parents serve those cooked to death canned green beans that were gray and mushy – no kid wants to eat those. When I can local green beans, you blanch them and then you can them so they are still good and firm. Then what we do is we make a dish called green beans with shallots and cream. And this is another dish that’s in my Harvest Eating cookbook, it’s also on the recipe it’s one of the most popular ones we have and what you do is you take a sauté pan, you put in a little extra-virgin olive oil and some shallots and then you start to sauté them up. And then you take your green beans which you cut and to an inch and a half long pieces. They are already blanched so they are part of the way cooked and their canned so they’ve got some of the crispness taken out of them, you throw those in the skillet and you sauté them around with the olive oil and the shallots, put a little salt and pepper, and then you add about a cup of organic heavy cream. And you allow this cream to cook way down and as it reduces down it will start to code these beans. You toss it around, what you can do for an addition is too tall some sliced and toasted almonds in there and then you serve that as a side dish next to a steak or on your Thanksgiving or Christmas table and I can guarantee you that you are going to have just a dish that people love. And we’ve seen it over and over on Harvest Eating people make green beans with shallots and cream and their kids go nuts for it because it’s got really nice flavors it is just a unique way to do it. And then let me think of another one, here’s another thing that I do – we’ve got a great peach harvest here so we make peach jam, we also just can peaches. What I like to do on a year-round basis is I make what’s called a peach habanero jam. And either I will take my peach jam and I’ll add minced jalapeno peppers and cook it down or I’ll take whole peaches that have been canned with a little water and sugar, I’ll take those put them in a skillet without draining them, put them in a skillet with a little bit of onion or a minced up habanero or even a Datil pepper, whatever spicy pepper you have, a little salt and pepper as well and cook that down until the pan starts to get really dry. And you can mash them with a potato masher, a hand masher. When it starts to get really dry and stick to the bottom of the pan turn it off and then pop it in the refrigerator to cool off. Now you take let’s say a couple of chicken thighs and you treat those chicken thighs with a wet paste – I make a paste that’s got cinnamon and fresh thyme and olive oil in it and I wrote those chickens with that. Grill them or roast them and then served them with this peach habenaro jam and that’s cold from the refrigerator, it’s got a little spice, it’s got that brilliant flowery peach flavor – you put those combinations together and again you’re enjoying the harvest that you put up, you know where these peaches came from, you know where these green beans or tomatoes came from and your creating just amazing meals using seasonal foods. In this is what I’ve been hammering home now for about six years on and that’s what can be done.

Brian: And you know chef, I’m on your website right now. You don’t look like an old guy, I mean you’re probably not older than I am, you’re a young good looking guy, you’re kind of making it cool to be doing canning. Now I’m not an expert, just listening to your passion and your, you know your recipes and thinking about the videos we shot on our canning DVD series. You kind of make it cool to be in the kitchen and look at canning as a way of putting up some great food.

Keith: Yeah, it’s a cool thing and I’ll glad that is coming back. It can be a really handy way to take advantage of either a backyard garden and that was what really drove canning for years and years was backyard gardens but nowadays I see people live in the city, live in apartments but they still like in New York City, you know thousands of people go every week to the green market because they won’t to eat those ripe New Jersey tomatoes in that corner all of that grass fed beef that comes out of the Adirondacks and the Hudson Valley but they don’t have a huge space. They have an inner-city kitchen but they still can, can and take advantage of canning. Now earlier you mentioned that you can, can meat. I just gave you the basics of canning like vegetables and things like that, you can get into – when you get a pressure canner and that’s a little more advanced and it’s a little more expensive. It’s about $150 to get a pressure canner but it opens up a world of possibilities. You can make stew, you can make suits, you can make all kinds of stuff using a pressure canner and I do a beef stew you that is also in the cook book called beef bourguignon, it’s a classic Bourgondien beef stew, it’s amazing. It has a lot of red wine in it and instead of making you know 2 pounds of meat I’ll make 10 pounds of meat and make a giant batch of it. It takes the same amount of time just a little more money for the ingredients but then when my family is done eating I take all of that loaded up into canning jars pop it in the pressure canner you know 25 min. later I’ve got 10, eight you know quart jars filled with this amazing ready-to-eat French beef stew. And this can be done with Chile, it can be done with spaghetti sauce, it can be done with salsa and all of these culinary applications are really great for canning too and that’s where the Ball jars have seen a lot of growth is people are looking at this not so much for food storage but for quality of food. Like instead of buying that awful jarred salsa they make fresh salsa with end of season tomatoes and then can it. In the you’ve got – you can easily put up enough salsa for a whole year and never be subject to buying that garbage in the store.

Brian: I mean salsa isn’t made in New York City? Hey chef we’ve got to go ahead and run to a quick radio break. There so much we want to talk to you about, the cook book, the contest, the website, some really cool stuff. We’re going to go ahead and come back with chef Keith Snow right after the break.

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Brian: Ladies and gentlemen welcome back once again to Off the Grid News and boy oh boy I wish this were a video version of our show today and Keith were here mixing stuff up in our little kitchen because we could be eating stuff Bill during the break.

Bill: Well he got us very hungry in his descriptions of some of the things that he can whip up with canned foods. And many of our listeners have exactly the same canned foods sitting there ready to go off the shelf all it takes is a little engineering and Keith’s cookbook and we’re on our way.

Brian: And Bill I would say, I mean, you know me I don’t think you or Keith would pick me out of the lineup going here is a guy that we think is a suspect canner. I’m an ex-New York cop, you know I just don’t look the part but I learned so much shooting that DVD, our canning DVD and then speaking to chef Snow today, I think it’s kind of cool. And people are going to make fun of me going alright so are you going to set your rifle down long enough to learn the fine art of canning are you? And my answer to them is going to be yes. Yeah given what I’ve learned during the video and then again today with Keith, I think it’s pretty cool but Keith the thing that has wet my appetite the most is you’re saying if a second grader can’t read it in terms of the label, don’t need it. So I’d like to talk to you about the mad scientists and how you know why they are able to make this food even though it is horrible for us, how they trick us into thinking both on the label and the contents they put in, how they trick us into thinking it is good for us and then how you’re at the opposite end of the pendulum swinging back into the light if you will, you know the good side. Can you catch us up on those mad scientists and what they’re doing to us?

Keith: Yeah, absolutely. People take for granted that you know there’s people that are literally designing these foods. Now they don’t just, you know oh get your grandmother’s recipe for you know ravioli and let’s make it, you’ve got a food scientist whose deliberately designing food products that evoke a pheromone response and they use focus groups and they test these products for a long time to get it right. Now and they do it specifically when you’re talking about the kids foods whether it be sweet, salty, fattening – each one of those foods is designed in a specific way. Now let’s just take – you got those frozen pizza rolls, we won’t mention the name but I bet you $1 million you’ve never had one of those things that’s under seasoned, you’ve never had a candy bar that doesn’t have enough sugar, you’ve never had a salty snack whether it be Doritos or something like that that’s missing salt. Each one of these things they take the 0:45:54.8 offensiveness whether it be salt, fat, sugar, they take it to the very, very limit of palatability because they’re trying to evoke a pheromone response. When that kid eats that pizza roll he’s going to get a burst of texture, it’s crispy right? There’s fat in there, that’s flavor and then there’s a big hint of salt in there and those things immediately go from your taste buds right to your brain via nerve endings and it tells your brain wow this is pretty good. Now if you take that kid that is used to eating those pheromone response evoking foods and then you give them the canned Ms. herbal green beans that somebody forgot to season, what do you think they’re going to pick?

Brian: Sure.

Keith: And this is the battle that parents face and this is why I have spent a lot of time teaching people how to use the good stuff to make foods palatable for kids. For instance taking broccoli – there’s a recipe on the website, taking broccoli with garlic and oil. Take steamed broccoli right and then instead of trying to get the kids to eat it bland, put it back in the skillet with a little garlic, oil, salt, and pepper and even does some Parmesan cheese over it. All of a sudden you got an amazing dish that they wouldn’t eat. Now if you think about that food science, I’ve taken those exact methods in other words evoking that pheromone response and that’s what I do with my fall full harvest foods. For instance we’ve got a line of pasta sauces now and what I want people to taste is amazing flavors, amazing textures and I want them to taste the signature ingredient. There so many times when you byproduct you know let’s say mushroom ravioli for instance. It doesn’t taste anything like mushrooms and with the sauces for instance we call flame roasted red pepper – now I put a time of flame roasted red peppers in there so when you open the jar, first of all you can see the red peppers, you put it up to your nose you can smell them and then there’s things like Wisconsin Romano cheese that you can taste and it’s a good flavor. And the olive oil that we use comes off of a single estate in California, it costs me $25 a gallon, it’s very high quality. And that oil is rich and has a beautiful mouth feel, our garlic is not imported from China, our onions are not imported from Peru, our tomatoes are not imported from Italy. We buy all of these things domestically from small to midsized family farms and then I put a lot of them in the jar so when you get something it’s not just branding or marketing on the label. When you open up the sun-dried tomato you look at the difference, I urge people, go to or and go to the Web store, look at the two sauces; you’re going to see a complete different color. That’s because the sun-dried tomato is loaded with sun-dried tomatoes and when we rehydrate those, their water we rehydrate those in becomes a beautiful burgundy color. We don’t throw that out, we put it right into the sauce and he gives it a rich color. It’s a very sophisticated sauce and when people try it no matter which flavor, you know just dunk a piece of bread in it, you literally can’t eat it out of the jar but it’s going to leave folks that pheromone response but in a good way. I didn’t take the products to the very edge of palatability by loading them down with salt or by putting fake flavors or natural flavors in there. Everything is 100% natural, comes from small farms and I think that’s a really important thing nowadays is to be able to buy what is a convenience product but something that is made you know with an ethical mindset.

Brian: Chef, I was just going to say quickly and unfortunately we are running out of time Bill I wanted to see if you because I know you are a big salsa maker and you make all kinds of cool stuff and can as well but I want to be respectful of all the other information that we need to get in. Is there any other questions that you have for the chef before we boogie?

Bill: No, I guess he kind of covered the thing I was most interested in is what was his motivation for starting Thoughtful Harvest because he was echoing some of the same thoughts, the same things that you and I talk about frequently.

Brian: Sure.

Bill: About taking control of your own backyard and of your own food. And if you can’t then, then what is the next tier and he is offering a next tier product line.

Brian: I think it’s fantastic and it doesn’t have to taste lousy. You know I think a lot of times people talk about survival and you know survival foods, it’s like eating MRE’s or you know eating sawdust but chef you showed us we can do canning, we can have a great time at doing it and have some really tasty foods but I want you to comment on a couple of things. While you were speaking I logged onto your Twitter page and I am now following you on twitter so if our listeners want to do the same thing, it will be chefkeithsnow@twitter also on Facebook at But chef before we let you go we have here for our listeners thanks to you for our subscribers where they are going to have the ability for just $85 they are going to get 12 26 ounce jars, that’s a dozen 26 ounce jars of the Thoughtful Harvest sauces and that includes UPS shipping to the lower 48 states. Bill tried one, I tried one, we were loving them so I just wanted to make mention of that offer and to thank you because I’m sure our listeners will be pretty fired up to take advantage of it.

Keith: Yeah, well we will do that. I know a lot of people you know are interested in building a survival pantry and they help the pantry so we’re giving people the opportunity to stock up on this product at a very good price and we include shipping in there and we pack it up very carefully and we will send it right out your house. And I would just ask people to check me out on those social networks. We also have a Facebook page for Thoughtful Harvest, Also we offer membership on our website if you get it for a year it’s about 19 or $.20 a day. It offers you access to every recipe that I create and helps to support our efforts because we do videos and we do high-def two camera shoots, very expensive so our members, we’ve got about 20,000 of them all over the world are helping to support this in getting the message out there of local and seasonal cooking. And then the cook book you can get that directly from the website. If you want an autographed copy you can also go to and get a great deal on it. One last thing that I will leave you guys with is November 12, 13th and 14th I’m going to be live at the app caught food and wine Festival doing some 45 min. speeches and signing my cookbook. I’d love to see anybody that’s in the Florida area and meet you in person but I really thank you guys for letting me come on the show and thank everybody for their attention. If anybody has a question about canning or anything we talked about just give me an e-mail at [email protected] and I’m happy to personally answer.

Brian: Chef, thank you so very much. We say this to all of the guests but we really, really mean this, if you’re in the area swing by and by the way bring a backpack full of your stuff when you come with you. Thank you so much we really appreciate your time. Ladies and gentlemen before we go I also want to let you know you can catch up on some of the things that we have been discussing today, some great tips, so great recipes, some great ideas also at, that’s As always we want to thank you for listening to Off the Grid Radio. Be sure to e-mail us with your questions, your comments, your critiques, Bill looks at them, I look at them, Jeramy looks at them so we want to know what you are thinking. You can do that at [email protected]. Of course you can find us on Facebook at and as always follow us on twitter at offgridnews. On behalf of Mr. Bill Heid, on behalf of Jeramy, all the folks here at Solutions from Science we know your time is valuable, we really thank you for hanging out with us, I’m Brian Brawdy.

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