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I store my emptied canning jars in the garage. I found that if I store the jars upside down, it saves a lot of time cleaning them up to use. No more dust or dead bugs inside.
By Mary B from Alanson, MI
It lets me enter my relish, fruit, salsa, etc. in the fair, and I make a modest check from that every year. I bought jars from people who were quitting their canning for a dollar or two per dozen. Lids are cheap, but for fair entries, Ball lids are required now.
We found an old ice vending building (remember when you bought a block for the ice box?) that had been gutted, and we buried it part way to keep it cool, and my husband made shelves for it. We got the shelving very cheaply from a small grocery store that was closing. I keep it full. We could live out of it for the next year or two without a qualm, if necessary.
Some of the other things I put up are marinara sauce, our favorite pickles, all kinds of veggies, juice, fish, chicken and beef. It's the main reason our grocery bill is so low.
One year I found a box of bananas that had gotten frozen accidentally, and the grocery store manager gave it to me. I mashed them up with a bit of lemon juice and froze them. We now have banana bread whenever we want it. Pesto is next on my list. The basil is doing great this year!
When we have extra milk, it goes into a jar and is pressure canned. My husband and I agree that if we have a lot of something, we need to put it by for later. If we can't eat it, we give it to the chickens or calves.
This year I'm really looking forward to doing salsa verde with our crop of tomatillos! It's heavenly on chicken enchiladas! I have done 35 pints of sweet pickle sticks easy as pie and the cucumbers are still producing by the bushel (about a 10 foot row). But next year the cucumbers may fail, so we'll be all set. And no, it doesn't take your whole day! I hope some of you will give it a try. You will see your menus get better as your food budget shrinks!
By Coreen from Rupert, ID
I just saw this tip on another site and one of the comments said something like "I wouldn't trust my canning information from just any blog". So I decided to go to the source. According to the manufacturers of Ball canning products, it is not necessary to heat the lids before placing them on the canning jars.
I found this page which talks about canning lids and how it is unnecessary to simmer them before using. This is not new information. It has been true since 1969, when the chemical composition of the sealing gasket was changed. As many of us learned to can from our older relatives, it is not surprising that this extra step has been passed on for so many years.
The Ball Corporation manufactured home canning jars and materials for over 100 years before spinning off the home canning manufacturing part of their business in 1993. The Jarden Corporation manufactures brands such as Ball and Kerr today. Their home canning site, freshpreserving.com, has information about all aspects of home canning.
Don't let your canning water go to waste. You can blanch green beans or other fruits or vegetables for freezing in boiling water bath canner water after you remove the jars of, say, tomatoes or fruit from the canner.
So many people are asking about canning foods or freezing them. I have an old Kerr Canning guide that is so old the pages are falling out, but I love it.
This is just a tip for non-USA residents that I have finally managed to work out! Canning, for all of us Europeans, means preserving or bottling! Not a tin in sight!
Thanks For The Nice Comments On Canning And Gardening. May I respond to all the nice people who commented on my home food canning tip?
When I was canning pickles this summer I would take a cut off cucumber end and put it up on my stove top to let me know each time I had put 1 cup of cucumbers in the pot.=
When I make jams or jellies using the Sure-Jell method, my recipe calls to bring it to rolling boil that cannot be stirred down for exactly one minute. Instead of trying to guess or use a kitchen timer, I just use my microwave timer.
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I'm searching for information on recanning foods from #10 cans. I purchased several #10 cans of garbanzo beans that I'd like to recan into pints. I wasn't sure if I needed to reuse the thick liquid already in the cans, or if I could can the beans in water and discard the liquid. Any info will be appreciated.
By Talitha from Payson, AZ
I agree-I would not recan something that is already processed, but I would freeze. Just put your beans into freezer zip bags and label them. You can even freeze them flat to take up less room.
When you freeze garbanzo beans I believe you will find they turn mushy so decide how you wish to use them first. Open 1 can at a time and freeze the left overs. Your extension service will be able to tell you the most about canning and recanning. If you do decide to freeze them I would drain the juice off and just freeze the beans in separate bags....leave them frozen until use and put in recipe frozen to make better use of them. Myself I prefer to dehydrate and then I don't have to worry and then I store them in the freezer. Don't take up much room that way either. Hope this helps.
Is there a simple, inexpensive way to can that doesn't take all day to do? If I have something I need to can, can I do it without spending tons of money to set up?
You have to buy jars, and you will either need a pressure cooker or a hot water bath canner. You will need a special pair of tongs to get the hot jars of canned goods out of the canner. Then you will need a cool place like a unheated basement to keep the canned produce, or a corner of the basement that isn't heated. By the time you prepare the produce for canning, until the time it gets done, you do spend a fair amount of time doing it. Once you get the filled jars in the canner you can do other things, but you do have to keep an eye on the processing time. It isn't hard to can, but it is time consuming and to get started it does take a fair amount of money.
Canning does take some start up money and a good chunk of time. I asked for the items I needed as gifts for Xmas and bdays for a few years. eBay is a good place to look too.
Less expensive is freezing items. I started freezing strawberries, peaches and zucchini while getting equipment. You need preserving agent for peaches. When freezing strawberries, clean, cut and freeze on tray individually. After throw in ziplock freezer bag. Great for smoothies and strawberry sauce later. Zucchini is cut in bite size pieces and frozen same as strawberries or food process it in certain measurements for recipes you use then freeze. I do the later for zucchini bread recipes I have.
I recently began canning food, water bath canning, dry canning, oven canning, and so on. After much thought I decided I would like to begin to store food long term incase of an emergency situation. I did some reserch and figured that oven canning food in mason jars would be appropriate as I don't have a food saver, and wasn't sure I wanted to invest in one just yet.
Now I have oven canned 20 jars of food about two weeks ago and am eager to know if it's possible and safe to remove the food from the mason jars and store them in mylar bags with oxygen absorbers. I also have some mason jars with oxygen absorbers and want to know if those could be transfered to mylar bags as well. I am down sizing in living space and desperatly want to do this before the move. I hope this is possible and need help urgently since I have no previous experience and would hate to mess this up. Please help! Any input would be so greatly appreciated. Thank you. The crazy canning lady.
I have found an excellent website for you called Ask a Prepper. On the site the person explains all you need to know about repackaging your foods in Mylar bags. What you need to have on hand and how to complete the process. Please read the article:
What do you do with jars that don't seal properly?
By Linda H
If they haven't sealed right away, some times it takes a few hours. (I'll here mine popping in the night). You either need to try and reheat the lid or get a new lid. If all fails again, use product right away. You should be able to get it sealed on 2nd try. Make sure the jar opening is clean/free from anything that would prevent the lid from sealing.
It seems many commercially canned foods use jars that are deliberately just a bit different from traditional canning jars, and the rings and lids will not fit.
Is there someplace to buy those items? Can I buy in bulk the original covers the commercial companies used?
By Muriel S
This is a page about water bath canning advice. A popular and time tested canning method is the water bath. Following the process carefully helps to ensure the quality and safety of your canned foods.