Mason jar mania

By Kitsey Burns Harrison -
Kitsey’s Kitchen -

Growing up in Yadkin County we had Mason jars all over the place. These jars were generally used for the purpose of storing home-canned items such as pickles or green beans, and on occasion used to drink a large amount of sweet tea.

Mason jars have now taken on a whole new life as part of the shabby chic country rustic design style. You see Mason jars as decorations in homes and even at weddings.

I still have plenty of jars in my house with homemade pickles in them, but I’ve also gotten on the re-purposed Mason jar bandwagon. I occasionally use them as flower vases and for storing items.

Using jars to serve and prepare fresh foods is another popular new trend. If you’ve dined at Kitchen Roselli’s in East Bend lately you may have noticed they now serve their famous Granny salad in a Mason jar.

Mason jar salads are actually a really neat way to prep several healthy lunch meals in advance. You can layer your dressing in the bottom of the jar then top with your favorite type of salad greens and toppings. When ready to eat, just shake to coat the salad in the dressing and enjoy!

I recently discovered another fun food to make in a jar — overnight oats. Since I’m still breastfeeding my son, I’m always trying to incorporate healthy foods that are purported to boost milk supply. Oats are one of those foods.

To be honest I have never been much of an oatmeal fan, but the overnight oats almost taste like a dessert. To make overnight oats, you add steel-cut oats, milk, chia seeds and your chosen toppings to add flavor like bananas or even peanut butter. Mix the ingredients in a small glass jelly jar, seal and store in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning you have a creamy delicious dessert-like breakfast that is healthy, too!

Below is a basic recipe for overnight oats. You can customize to your preferences of flavor.

Overnight Oats

• 1/3 to 1/2 cup liquid such as dairy milk, almond, cashew or coconut milk

• 1/3 to 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

• 1/3 to 1/2 cup yogurt, optional

• 1 teaspoon chia seeds, optional but highly recommended

• 1/2 banana, mashed, optional

Mix all ingredients together in a small jelly jar. Top with a lid and refrigerate overnight. Enjoy in the morning served with toppings of your choice such as fruit, nuts, peanut or other nut butter, seeds, protein powder, granola, coconut, etc.

Kitsey Burns Harrison is a reporter for The Yadkin Ripple. Here she shares her musings on love, live, food and being a new mom. She may be reached on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.

Kitsey’s Kitchen’s Kitchen

By Kitsey Burns Harrison