Tuesday, August 6, 2013

"Can Do": Overcoming Canning Fears

I have a very hard time canning because I have a small kitchen and no dishwasher.  But I desperately want to have the shelves lined with gorgeous home-processed canned goods.  Every time I get large quantities of food, I end up vacuum sealing it and freezing it because it's easier than sterilizing jars, filling the canner, finding unused lids, and processing the jars.

But now we have a cow coming in.  My freezer is FULL.  I have no room for the meat we're about to pick up.  So I put my big girl pants on and got to canning.  I started out easy, with half of a bushel of peaches.  They were on the seconds rack at our farm market.  I only lost four or five out of the whole batch to mold, which is a big deal for me.

I also reprocessed the strawberry preserves that I had made.  It didn't have enough pectin the first time around.

Canning those were so easy, that I asked my brother to pick up some more peaches.

With 16 quarts of peaches under my belt, I moved to tackle a big fear and source of anxiety:  pressure canning.  My mom gave me her old Mirro pressure canner a while back.  It has a weight instead of a gauge, and I had no idea what I was doing.  But I consulted the internet and my Ball canning book, and voila!

There are still some green beans in the fridge from the half bushel I bought.  I think that 6 quarts is enough for storage (for now) and that these will become ham and green beans for an easy dinner.


  1. Yay for you! Are you going to can some of your beef, or freeze it all?

  2. I froze all of the beef. I've never had home-canned meat, and honestly it scares me a little :o) I'm sure it's fine and tasty, but I don't know if I could eat it for the first time having done it myself.