Tuesday, September 19, 2006

More Canning Chatter

Yesterday I worked in the morning and canned for most of the afternoon and evening. I'm nearly done. All that's left is a peck of tomatoes (I'm sorely tempted to just toss them in the garden. I'm so sick of tomatoes!) and canning beans. I'd like to do quart jars with black beans and some onions so I can just dump the beans in a food processor and go straight to refried beans on the nights that sounds good. I also need to do pints to go with the 18 pints of chili con carne I canned yesterday.

The chili turned out nicely--I think it's going to be kind of medium-hot.

I did one last batch of tomato soup, but ran out of "steam" at the end (my own, not the canner's). So I did 7 quarts in the pressure canner and had 2 quarts and 1 pint left over. I put those in clean jars with screw-top lids and stuck those in the fridge.

I have used every single pint jar I own. I own a lot of pint jars. Last year I had 40 quart jars left over--I put these across the top shelf of my "pantry" shelves for decoration. This year over half of those are full of tomato juice or tomato soup. I plan to fill the rest with beans at this point.


ScrappinCindy said...

I often get tired of tomatoes at this time of year. Last year I froze quart bags of the last tomatoes. They work great in stews, soups, etc.

Eliza said...

Where would you suggest a begining canner start? I'm thinking of doing some of those Gifts in a Jar thigies so I can get over my fear! I'm not sure what recipes to start with or really anything!

The Queen said...

The gift in a jar thing use the jars--but wouldn't help you get your canning feet wet.

Honestly? I recommend getting a box of pomona pectin, a box of half-pint ball canning jars, two large bags of frozen strawberries, one container of frozen orange juice, and a box of sugar.

Use the directions on the canning jar box to prepare the canning jars. Use the directions in the pomona pectin for making the jam (but basically--you're going to cook those strawberries together with the large can of orange juice and add enough sugar to taste like strawberry-orange jam. The Pomona pectin directions will help you from there.)

Pour hot jam in hot jars, put lids on top, process in hot water bath (pot of boiling water with enough water to cover the lids by an inch) for as long as it says to in the pomona pectin directions.

THAT jelly makes a cheap and easy and yummy Christmas present. And pomona pectin is easier to use than the others. It makes it much, much harder to ruin the jam by cooking it too long or not long enough.