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Canning & Preserving 101

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/12/2012, 1:14 am

Kewl! If I ever get more than three or four eggplants here in Western Oregon's rain belt, I'm a'gonna try your method of drying them. Hmmm, perhaps growing eggplants in the greenhouse, then ..... If it works next year, I'll post results. Thanks, Nonna.PapaVino

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  elliephant on 8/12/2012, 11:23 am

I came really close to buying a dehydrator off Amazon last night after reading that about eggplant. I've got them coming out my ears.

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 8/12/2012, 12:20 pm

@elliephant wrote:I came really close to buying a dehydrator off Amazon last night after reading that about eggplant. I've got them coming out my ears.
Do IT! I dehydrate a lot of tomatoes and peppers too. What a Face

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Turan on 8/12/2012, 12:59 pm

Wow, that really shows how much water there is in them! Did you blanch the eggplant first? What kind of recipes are you thinking to use it in?

Hmmmm,,,, I am starting to think about a moussaka inspired casserole and winter ratatouille... O my, I hope I can get lots more eggplant! Mine are just starting.

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 8/12/2012, 1:20 pm

@Turan wrote:Wow, that really shows how much water there is in them! Did you blanch the eggplant first? What kind of recipes are you thinking to use it in?

Hmmmm,,,, I am starting to think about a moussaka inspired casserole and winter ratatouille... O my, I hope I can get lots more eggplant! Mine are just starting.
I cut them about 3/4 inch cubes and blanched for 4 minutes. Yes lots of water. Very Happy I will toss some into soups and stuff, I wonder how baba ganoush would be with reconstituted eggplant. sunny

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  ericam on 8/12/2012, 8:43 pm

@camprn wrote:
@elliephant wrote:I came really close to buying a dehydrator off Amazon last night after reading that about eggplant. I've got them coming out my ears.
Do IT! I dehydrate a lot of tomatoes and peppers too. What a Face

+1 !

I say do it as well. I love my dehydrator, there's lots you can do with it. On Friday night I made my own granola and dried a whole pile of strawberries as well. I regularly dry apples and I really want to try making jerky.

As my SFG is only new I have yet to dry my own produce in there but the time will come!
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ratatouille

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/12/2012, 9:18 pm

Fixed a ratatouille tonight with homegrown eggplants, tromboncino squash, yellow crookneck squash, half homegrown onion-half commercial, semi spicy unknown pepper variety, garden-grown basil, and a handful of okra pods from the greenhouse! Uh, Southern-style ratatouille? With some buttered noodles, fresh-grated Parmesan cheese, and a side dish of green beans, it was a feast! Finally seeing a return on the investment in composts, etc. from this spring. Much better nutrition, whatever, right? Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  RoOsTeR on 8/12/2012, 9:23 pm

You're so lucky I don't live nearby... Razz hungry drooling I would never leave your table.

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/12/2012, 9:25 pm

Well, RoOsTer, I hark back to my grandmother's way of cooking. Y'all come, there's plenty. If not enough, there's always a batch of biscuits to fill in the empty corners. Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  RoOsTeR on 8/12/2012, 9:35 pm

@Nonna.PapaVino wrote:Well, RoOsTer, I hark back to my grandmother's way of cooking. Y'all come, there's plenty. If not enough, there's always a batch of biscuits to fill in the empty corners. Nonna

Ratatouille is comfort food. Who's knows that better than grandmothers! Anyone who can make ratatouille these days is worth a copper penny in my book Wink



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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/12/2012, 9:51 pm

Then I won't mention that we serve it with some buttered noodles and a goodly grating of fresh Parmesan cheese. Ummmmmm. Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  rowena___. on 8/13/2012, 9:03 am

oh yum, ratatouille! i'm glad to know the okra were good in it, i've thought about putting some in when i make it but then my husband says, "really???" and i back down. which is fine, because a deep fried green okra pod will cure a lot of what ales a husband anyway.
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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/13/2012, 4:38 pm

PapaVino is a Northwest native, and totally unexposed to okra until now. His preconception is that it is "slimy." After making fried okra from my plants this year, he allowed as how, fixed that way, it was not slimy. Yesterday, in the ratatouille, he didn't even know they were there. He's improving. Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Carole C. on 8/14/2012, 9:27 pm

I steam my eggplants (cubes or slices) before drying, so I don't add any more water than necessary. Use cubes for ratatouille or puree/dip and slices for moussaka--just rehyrate and use in your recipe.
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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 8/22/2012, 5:38 pm


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Sweet hot dog relish with funny cukes

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/23/2012, 6:10 pm

This year we planted a most unusual cucumber from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, called Sikkim. Evidently it's a dual purpose cucumber used in India's Sikkim provence for both eating fresh and for cooking. Today I used some of largest Sikkims to make a sweet pickle relish from the recipe by the same name in the special interest publication "Canning from the editors of our best-selling cookbook" from Better Homes and Gardens, and on the newsstand for 2012. Even before the relish hit the jars, PapaVino dipped in and tasted it and pronounced it, "The best!" I shall take a finished jar of it to Seabrook (WA) to taste test on son, daughter-in-law and twin grandkids to see if they agree. And, while visiting, the kids said they'd love to make pickles with me, so I'll take a bunch of Russian Pickling cukes, some dill from the garden, etc. and help them make their first canning effort. Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 8/23/2012, 6:13 pm

recipe please.... pretty please Very Happy

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/23/2012, 6:24 pm

camprn, I found this BHG recipe for the pickle relish online: http://www.bhg.com/recipe/canning/sweet-pickle-relish/
It is very like unto the one in the magazine EXCEPT for the amounts of mustard seeds and celery seeds. In the magazine, and what I used, was 1 tablespoon mustard seeds and 2 teaspoons celery seeds. All other ingredients and the preparation instructions are the same. Hope we don't get in trouble with copyright considerations. Also, I ended up with 6-1/2 half pints instead of the 7 indicated in the recipe; perhaps I drained the veggies a bit more than their test kitchen. Enjoy. Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 8/28/2012, 6:49 am

As seen on Canning granny's Facebook page.

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 9/3/2012, 1:18 pm

I really, really hate it when all the jars are full, caps secure and then whilst lowering them into the bath you can hear the bottom of one of the jars blow out. Yup, I really hate that! Evil or Very Mad

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  rowena___. on 9/3/2012, 5:02 pm

GAH! that is a sinking feeling. what did you do with that load of food?
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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 9/3/2012, 5:18 pm

@rowena___. wrote:GAH! that is a sinking feeling. what did you do with that load of food?

It was a quart of spicy dilly beans and it looked good enough to take to the fair, long straight beans packed tight, plump garlic cloves, nice dill heads..... it was in the center position and all the rest of the jars were pints. I gently lifted the rack to resting position on the canning kettle, removed all the pints, took the kettle to the sink and lifted the quart in the rack, of course all the vinegar ran out the bottom and turned the whole thing over. The jar upside down, I checked for chips but nope, the whole bottom disk had just separated I got a new jar and moved everything into it. It didn't look as nice, but it still looks pretty good. Pored out the kettle of water and vinegar.

Of course there was just enough vinegar/salt solution left over to refill that quart. All jars then processed well. A second visual inspection yielded the same results, no shards. I feel confident.

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 9/3/2012, 7:30 pm

Oddly, I find more canning failures with Kerr than with Ball jars/lids. Anyone else experience this? (canned 9 quarts of applesauce this past weekend, and the only one that failed to seal was a Kerr lid) Nonna

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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  happycamper on 9/4/2012, 5:36 pm

Nonna, I thought I would share a short canning story. My cousin and I have been canning for over 30 years. Last week we were both canning Suncrest peaches and she had 14 quarts that did not seal. I went to visit her to see what happened and her Ball lids (purchased this year) actually crimped at one edge and wrinkled across the lid during the water bath process. I have never seen anything like it. I have encouraged her to write them. Has anyone ever seen this happen? I had never heard of it before.
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Re: Canning & Preserving 101

Post  camprn on 9/4/2012, 6:05 pm

@happycamper wrote:Nonna, I thought I would share a short canning story. My cousin and I have been canning for over 30 years. Last week we were both canning Suncrest peaches and she had 14 quarts that did not seal. I went to visit her to see what happened and her Ball lids (purchased this year) actually crimped at one edge and wrinkled across the lid during the water bath process. I have never seen anything like it. I have encouraged her to write them. Has anyone ever seen this happen? I had never heard of it before.
Ooooooh! That is weird and sad! What did you do with the food? I would certainly write a letter and send them one of the lids. Did you take a photo?

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