Learning to Can Foods? Help

Discussion in 'Egg, Chicken, & Other Favorite Recipes' started by SoccerMomof7, Jun 15, 2008.

  1. SoccerMomof7

    SoccerMomof7 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2008
    Kansas
    Okay I just read a thread about canning and then realized that I have a huge garden going strong and have NO idea about how to can it. Having 7 kids I am trying to learn how to cut our grocery bills, actually all of my bills. Can someone please tell me what all I need and how to can foods. Is there anything you can't can?
     
  2. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    The main food-safety issue to be aware of is botulism. Boiling water temperatures do NOT kill botulism spores/bacteria, although it cannot live in high-acid environments. Botulinum toxin is odorless, colorless and tasteless. Thus, you cannot rely on noticing that food is contaminated, and just a small taste can be enough to give you botulism. The disease is often (before modern medicine, usually) fatal. Not to scare you, i'm just saying, Follow Directions Carefully [​IMG]

    High-acid foods (tomatoes, certain [but not all] tomato-based sauces, and pickles) can safely be canned in a water-bath canner. You can improvise for small batches with a large stockpot or other kettle type thing.

    Low-acid vegetables (corn, beans, anything that isn't a tomato or a pickle) should only be done in a pressure canner.

    Fruits can be done in either (it doesn't tend to have botulism problems, but other types of spoilage are still an issue, and pressure-canning reduces the likelihood of that).

    Meat/poultry/fish should definitely only ever be canned in a pressure canner, and with care.

    Jams, jellies etc require only a water-bath canner.

    You may see older recipes that call for steam-canning or oven-canning, but be aware that these methods are NOT guaranteed to kill all botulism spores and thus are not recommended anymore.

    Since a pressure canner is expensive, unless you can borrow one you might want to start out making canned fruit or tomatoes or making pickles, so you can use stuff you already have and see how you like it.

    Ball canning co has put out a wonderful book which will tell you all you need to know, it is called something like the Ball Blue Book of Canning. Check your library, and if they don't have it they may be able to get it thru interlibrary loan.

    Have fun! [​IMG]

    Pat
     
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Ontario, Canada
    You CAN can anything (so to speak [​IMG]) but some things are obviously not worthwhile. Lettuce comes to mind [​IMG] Mashed squash or pumpkin should not be canned, but you can can 'em cubed. Potatoes... I do not think you can can potatoes, but who would, anyhow [​IMG]

    If you do not as yet have a pressure canner, though, FREEZING is a really good option for most (tho not all) veggies. In fact some things, like peas and beans, probably freeze BETTER than they can, unless you prefer your veggies a bit squishy.

    Pat
     
  4. SoccerMomof7

    SoccerMomof7 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2008
    Kansas
    How would I do salsa when you don't cook it?

    Oh and I want to do apple butter today!!! ANy advice?
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2008
  5. coffeemama

    coffeemama Barista Queen

    Mar 5, 2008
    Oregono
    Quote:Yep you can CAN potatoes. Add them to stews, soups, ect. I've never done it, but I've eaten them before.
     
  6. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    California
    Quote:There is an apple butter recipe.... are you wanting to make it today or CAN it today?
     
  7. SoccerMomof7

    SoccerMomof7 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 13, 2008
    Kansas
    I am getting ready to make it so I won't can it until tomorrow. It has to cook overnight. But I have never canned anything and need to go to walmart and buy some things.
     

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