Today's issue deals with canning how-tos and recipes.
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In this newsletter we have compiled links to some of the best canning information and recipes. It is very important that home canning is done correctly and safely. While canning is a craft it's not one that allows for a lot of experimentation in the actual process of canning. Luckily, if you are new to canning, you won't have to learn by trial and error because there is detailed information to assist you online.
One very important factor when considering information about canning is the publication date. People have been canning for hundreds of years and you can find old information that may be effective but not as safe as new canning methods. Information published in the 90s or sooner will likely be of greater value than information from the 80s or earlier. This is one reason why College Extension sites are so useful. They usually have creation date, revision date or reviewed date of all information that is posted.
In the links below we tried to pick new information. The one possible exception would be the recipe sites which contain hundreds of recipes that may or may not adhere to proper safety standards. This is why it's very important for you to know safe canning procedures before experimenting with a particular canning recipe.
Two drawbacks to canning is that it's quite a bit of work and the supplies can get a bit expensive. Do you have ideas for saving on canning supplies? We have created a Brainstorm online for readers to post their ideas.
Brainstorm: Saving Money on Canning Supplies
Tips for saving money on canning supplies.
Canning can be an excellent, low cost method of preserving foods. "The principal advantage of canning home-grown produce is that it can be a lot cheaper than buying fruits and vegetables," says Luke LaBorde, assistant professor of food science in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. "And you're harvesting them at their optimum flavor and maturity, so you get a better product."
How Canning Preserves Foods
The high percentage of water in most fresh foods makes them very perishable. They spoil or lose their quality for several reasons:
Microorganisms live and multiply quickly on the surfaces of fresh food and on the inside of bruised, insect-damaged, and diseased food. Oxygen and enzymes are present throughout fresh food tissues.
Proper canning practices include:
Collectively, these practices remove oxygen; destroy enzymes; prevent the growth of undesirable bacteria, yeasts, and molds; and help form a high vacuum in jars. Good vacuums form tight seals which keep liquid in and air and microorganisms out.
There is tons of canning how-tos online as well and thousands of canning recipes. You can find detailed instructions and information at University extension about how to safely can. Below are a couple of sites with great information about canning.
Here's a series of PDFs published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture that contain much of the information you need to know to start canning. These are available in PDF format. Further down in down in this newsletter we have some links to online resources that catain basically the same information.
These two articles explain the difference between canning with a Pressure Canner and a Boiling Water-Bath.
Pressure canning is a safe and economical method of preserving low acid foods which has been used for decadesespecially by home gardeners and others interested in providing food storage for their families where quality control of the food is in one's own hands. Home food preservation also promotes a sense of personal satisfaction and accomplishment. Further, the guess-work is taken out of being able to provide a safe food supply at home when guidelines for operating a pressure canner are followed exactly, scientifically tested/approved recipes are utilized, and high quality equipment, supplies and produce are used.
Boiling water-bath canning is a safe and economical method of preserving high acid foods. It has been used for decadesespecially by home gardeners and others interested in providing food storage for their families where quality control of the food is in ones' own hands. Home food preservation also promotes a sense of personal satisfaction and accomplishment. Further, the guesswork is taken out of providing a safe food supply which has been preserved at home when guidelines for operating a water-bath canner are followed exactly, scientifically tested/approved recipes are utilized (1988 or later), and good quality equipment, supplies and produce are used.
This site has all the information you need to get started canning. It has hotwos and specific recipes for canning various foods.
This site has some tips, general canning information and some recipes. The recipes inlcude: Applesauce, Berries, Peaches, Pears, Tomato Sauce, Seasoned Tomato Sauce, Tomatillo Salsa and Zesty Salsa.
"Now that the garden is producing wonderful vegetables & fruits, let's talk about preserving the produce. Home canning, freezing & dehydrating are great ways to enjoy the "fruit's of your labor" long after the growing season. Along with a sense of accomplishment, and a source of pride, home canning lets you control the ingredients and quality of the foods you eat."
Nearly 200 canning recipes available on this site utilizing a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. There also is multiple recipes for spaghetti sauce.
Another site with tons of recipes for canning and preserving fruits and vegetables.
Numerous interesting canning recipes: Pumpkin Butter, Blueberry Pie Filling, Hamburger Pickles, Sauerkraut, Zucchini Relish, Tomato Soup, Sour Apple Pie Filling and many more.
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