This section has canning recipes and teaches you how to can if you have never done this before.
When I was a child, my grandfather, Floyd Pitcher, always had a huge backyard garden. He grew tons of beautiful vegetables and fruits each summer in Hyde Park, NY. He and my grandmother, Mildred, gave a lot of their home-grown produce away and they would can the rest. They had a root cellar where they would keep it all after it was canned. My grandparents, pictured above by their flower garden, were amazing when it came to food!
David and I learned how to can when we moved to Colorado Springs. I was pregnant and had two children under five so I did not try to find a job. David worked full time and went to school full time but did not have school during the summer. Gardening is David's hobby so he planted a huge garden and designed his first of many greenhouses in Colorado Springs.
When summer came, vegetables grew and ripened quicker than we could eat them. David suggested we learn how to can. So we got some books and canning jars and went to town! We canned everything and made several varieties of pickles. I even went so far as to learn how to make jams and jellies and it was fun! It is a lot of work, but it is not difficult.
You will need:
A Very Large Pot With Lid (It needs to be big enough for canning jars to be surrounded by boiling water as well as tall enough to hold two inches of water above the jars, plus some additional space above the water. You will be processing seven to 10 jars at a time.)
Long-handled ladles and long-handled spoons
A Large Colander
Non-metal Spatulas (for packing jars)
Mason Jars (For most vegetables, you will want to use quart-sized jars. Pint jars and smaller jars are usually for jams and jellies. We kept plenty of all sizes on hand. Once a jar is empty, wash and save to use in canning again.
Two-piece Vacuum Caps and Lids (This is a great system to ensure that your food stays fresh and does not spoil when processed correctly. Mason jars and the caps and lids can be found in grocery stores and stores like Wal-Mart and K-Mart. The lid that goes on the top of the jars can be used only once and then thrown away. The screw-on lids can be saved and washed and put away for next time.
***IMPORTANT NOTE: Always use mason jars made for canning. Do not use jars that held food you bought from the supermarket. They may not hold up to the hot bath or may be scratched and will not keep your food fresh and safe to eat for up to a year.
There are many canning recipes and I will put some up for your convenience. If you have a good canning recipe, please feel free to share it below.
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