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It is important to pick fruit that tastes good when canning. It should be ripe. It will be firm but not really hard and should not be mushy. Once you start canning it, the fruit won't change its taste. If you like it now, you will like it when it comes out of the can months later.
There are some things that are not usually found in the kitchen that you will want. Some things you will have, such as saucepans, bowls, and ladles. You need to be prepared with all equipment before you wash the fruit.
To prepare the jars, they can be washed in a dishwasher if it has a sanitizing cycle. The jars can be left in the dishwasher on a heat cycle. The lids need to be washed and left in the hot water. The canner needs to be filled so that there will be an inch of boiling water over the top of the jars.
You would probably be happiest with fruit you can pick yourself or fruit at a good farmer's market. They also have co-ops in some places that you can belong to and get fresh farm produce as each season changes. It will take about 17 1/2 pounds of fruit to fill one canner of about 7 quarts.
The syrup will help the color and retain its shape. Light to heavy syrup can be used. I prefer light syrup. I use 2 cups of sugar and 4 cups of water. I add sugar to my heating water in a saucepan. I let it come to a gentle boil and keep it hot until I add the nectarine.
By Mary Belk