Canning requires garden young vegetables, but when the weather is dry and your backyard production is hampered you will be faced with a problem of finding something fresh to can, but this should not hold you back. Your garden will always offer something delicious for you and your family, if not during summer, then in the fall.
Canning is an easy process for all who are interested in their own homemade food storage.Canning is not a scary process but it is time consuming. The rewards of doing your own home canning thought are great. Here are some very basics home canning.
There are two home- canning types: pressure canning and boiling water bath canning. The boiling water bath canning process is only recommended for high acidic foods such as tomatoes while pressure canning is recommended for foods that are less acidic to avoid the development of a certain harmful toxin, Botulism. I personally prefer and feel that only the pressure type of canning is safe to avoid botulism. Although you will have some people tell you that they can using the boiling water bath method of all type of foods, my advice is DON’T. Therefore this article will address the pressure canning method only.
This article we will address the steps necessary for pressure canning.
Supplies Needed For Pressure Canning
Pressure canning is the most used method for canning food since it’s considered as the healthiest way to store food. To do so, here are some necessary supplies:
Pressure canner with gauge or dial
Rings (also called rims) and new lids
Big stock pot
Pint or quart canning jars
Large canning funnel
Jar lifter (handy, but not necessary)
A canning book, my personal favorite is the Ball Blue Book.
Jars should not be an issue, you can either purchase new canning jars, or do like your grandmother who may have used mayonnaise jars, spaghetti sauce jars or any other available quart or pint sized jars. Always run your finger along the rim of the jar to check for any tiny chips or cracks. Discard all but totally perfect jars. Once you have your jars collected, prepare them for canning by washing them well in hot water and soap, rinse and thoroughly dry them.
Choosing Products to Can
Many fresh food products can be canned, some are easy, some are complicated others are not recommended at all. If you are a beginner to the wonderful world of home canning, I highly suggest that you start with “easy to can” foods such as tomatoes, salsas, soups, string beans and potatoes. While most vegetables and fruits can very well, avoid broccoli and mushrooms which do not hold up well in high temperatures and you may be unhappy with the results.
There are definitely more ideas that you will find in books such as the ones we recommended for you and many other good guides on home canning on the Internet. Some of you are used to canning certain items, traditionally inherited from your grandmothers but it is always nice to try something new. Good ideas are always found in books and guides so be sure to do some research before starting to can.
Avoid canning mushrooms or broccoli since they don’t hold up well in high temperatures.
Take advantage of the fresh produce in your garden or shop for foods at your local farmers’ market to get fresh ingredients for canning.
It might take you some time to prepare for the canning process, but always remember that it is healthier to consume homegrown canned vegetables rather than commercially canned products since you have really no ideal of the ingredients and the way they were prepared.
Rachel Ballard is an expert on food preparation to make sure that she is well stocked with emergency food. When she is not doing something food related, she is a regular contributor to Dan’s Depot.com.