Today’s Canning Project

Last weekend I bought some pears because they were on sale and I wanted to try my hand at canning pears.

So I brought up my pressure canner and prepared to can the pears. I love this website pickyourown when I’m looking online to find out how to can something.  This site has tons and tons of recipes for canning and I’ve not found a single thing that you can put in a mason jar that isn’t listed.  It’s absolutely fantastic.

Anyway I looked up how to can pears and to my delight I found out that you don’t pressure can pears, you use a water bath.  So that’s even better.  I peeled the pears and cored them.  Then I sliced each pear into quarters.  I didn’t want to use anything but water to put my pears in so I mixed up a batch of citric acid (I have a huge bag of this for making bath bombs).  Use 3T (or 1/4 cup) for each cup of hot water.  Bring it to a boil.  Pack your pears into your jars, I am using pint jars, pour the water solution with citric acid to keep the fruit from turning brown.  Leave 1/2″ head space, wipe off the rim of the jar, put on the lid and place the sealed jars into your water bath canner or large pot.  Make sure the jars are covered with the water.  Process in boiling water for 20 minutes for the pints.  Remove the jars from the hot water using you tongs and allow them to cool.  As they cool you will hear them popping as they seal.

I always write on the lid what I canned and the month and year I canned it.  I always remove the ring from the jars just in case something went wrong and the food spoils.  If you don’t have the ring on the lid will simply pop and not explode like it will if the ring is left on.

My next project for canning was green grapes.  I had some in the fridge that weren’t getting eaten fast enough for me so I once again looked up online how to can green grapes.  It is again a water bath process so I just left the water on the stove and got the green grapes ready to can.  Simple process, take the grapes off the stem, rinse the grapes, add the grapes to your jars.  I used pints again.  Leave 1/2″ head space, wipe the rims and pour hot light syrup, water with citric acid, or juice like white grape juice or apple juice over the grapes, remove air bubbles, wipe off the rim of the jar.  Place the lid on the jar and tighten.  Put the jars in your water bath canner and process for 20 minutes for pints.

Now that I have these two things canned I’m all ready for the salad that I make for the upcoming holidays.  My mom always made this salad for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter.  Here’s the recipe:

1/2 pint whipping cream, 1 pint pears cut into bite sized pieces, 1 pint green grapes, 1 pint pineapple chunks.  Drain the fruit.  While the fruit is draining whip the whipping cream to very stiff peaks.  Pour the fruit into a bowl, add whipped cream and stir to mix.  DO NOT add any sugar to the whipping cream.  That’s all there is to the salad, hope you enjoy it.  You can use purchased fruit just get the 15 oz sizes for all of these.

Adventures in Canning

I don’t usually write about canning things and cooking but I just thought this might help someone who wants to use their automatic pressure canner for something besides making jelly or pickles.

This week I picked up 36 ears of sweet corn so that I could can them. I have a Ball Freshtech automatic pressure canner and a Power XL Pressure Cooker/Canner so I got them both out and started to work. I know there are a lot of people out there that say you can’t pressure can in your pressure cooker but the Power XL Pressure cooker actually has a button for canning so let’s put that to rest.

The Freshtech automatic canner actually comes with pre-programmed recipes that Ball designed it for.  Why they did this I have no idea but the recipes they have on it are for jelly and jam, salsa, pickles, etc.  Most of us know that you don’t need a pressure canner for salsa or pickles because they are high in acid and only require a hot water bath.  That said I have been determined to figure out how to use my automatic canner for other items like green beans and corn.  So here is what I did to figure it out.

First I decided what I was going to be canning.  I hit a sale on fresh green beans one week so I bought about 7 lbs.  I then searched online for recipes that were using a regular pressure canner to find out what pressure they need to be processed at and how long.  Here is my favorite site pickyourown.org   This site contains tons of information on canning everything that you can safely can.

I looked up canning green beans and found out that for pint jars I needed the pressure to be 11 pounds and process them for 20 minutes.  Okay that’s was easy but now for the tricky part.  What I do is check my automatic canner for the recipes and then start searching for pressure canning one of the recipes they have on the machine.  What I am looking for is the button on the automatic canner that will process my green beans for the correct amount of time and pressure.  I have found that the salsa button on the automatic canner process the food at 11 pounds of pressure and that you can select a different number button for the amount of time you need to cook.  Then you simply follow the directions to get your machine all set up and when it has preheated and you are all ready you can put your pint or quart jars into the machine, add the recommended amount of water, close and lock the lid and push the combination of recipe and number buttons you need and let the machine do the rest.

Granted this last part took some starting and stopping until I found the right amount of time to the processing.  But it’s still simply starting and stopping the process until you get the amount of time.

So far I’ve canned 10 pints of green beans and we have eaten some so I know they are safe.  I just finished canning 11 pints of sweet corn.  These I canned on salsa and the number 5 which processes the corn for 60 minutes but that is just 5 minutes longer than recipes called for so I’m fine with that.  On my Power XL Pressure Cooker I placed the 4 pints into the liner, added water to 1/4 the way up the jars, closed and locked the lid, made sure the valve was closed and pressed canning.  After that I adjusted how well done I wanted things.  I have found out that med is what I needed and then the last thing I did was add time to the processing time so that it would process the corn for 55 minutes and let the machine take over.  After the processing time when the timers went off I allowed both canner to vent naturally and now I can’t wait to dig into the corn.

 

 

me know if you have

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