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Canning?

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Re: Canning?

Post  camprn on 5/31/2010, 7:26 am

Congrats Chex!!! Well done! cheers
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Re: Canning?

Post  AtlantaAnn on 6/5/2010, 10:14 am

Good for you Chexmix! I've read this forum (and others on the internet) and I'm still so paranoid about the process. I've purchased all the items needed and I'm building up the nerve to can dilly-beans this weekend. I've purchased and 'studied' the blue ball book where they insist that you don't sub anything in the recipe...I can't find dill-heads but think I'm gonna just jump right in and sub w/dill seeds.

I'm very excited...thanx for the encouragement!
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Re: Canning?

Post  herblover on 6/10/2010, 1:11 pm

Use your dill seed; it will be fine. There were Ball coupons advertising their "Discovery Kit" with the tag line "It's as easy as boiling water". It really isn't hard and you will be so proud of yourself after you can your first batch of something.
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substituting dill seed

Post  ander217 on 6/10/2010, 7:04 pm

You can substitute dill seed but the flavor probably won't be as strong - usually 1 or 2 tsp. per head is the standard rate of substitution. Make sure you use fresh seed or it will add very little flavor. If there is no strong aroma, the seeds are probably old.

Yay! You're canning!
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Re: Canning?

Post  Megan on 6/10/2010, 7:28 pm

I bought my Ball book today, woo hoo!
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Re: Canning?

Post  AtlantaAnn on 6/10/2010, 7:37 pm

Yay! You're canning! [/quote]

thanks so much for the encouragement. i tried it last nite with a few reservations, afterthoughts and concerns...but it was rewarding and i'm definitely gonna go at it again. firstly...i think i over processed/boiled (wrinkly beans) i was skidish about putting the jars in water boiling too hard....and secondly....as careful as i was to clip the ends of my dilly beans to be under the water...this morning i see that the beans are a smidgen above the liquid in my jars. any comments or critiques you all can offer will be gladly appreciated and duly noted for next time.

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Re: Canning?

Post  AtlantaAnn on 6/10/2010, 7:53 pm

[quote="chexmix"]For all those beginners out there: IT IS EASIER THAN YOU THINK. This is my first year doing SFG and canning. Over the weekend I canned my first jars.

to you too chexmix! i tried it as well....now i'm just waiting on the right time to taste the product if it survives and is edible. i gotta tell you....i was so excited to hear the tops pop on the jars
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Re: Canning?

Post  chexmix on 6/12/2010, 2:46 pm

Great job Ann. I understand the being scared the first time, I was to. I actually did some more canning a couple of days ago. Bread n Butter pickles were the choice of the day. Also did a few pickled Jalopeno Peppers. Had my boy friend help with those. Told him one lid wasn't right but he didn't listen. That jar had to be done again as it didn't POP like the others.

Those pops are great to hear. Its music to our ears.

Keep it up.
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Re: Canning?

Post  ske on 6/12/2010, 2:56 pm

Congratulations Chexmix! Great job!

I had never canned anything before this year. However, like others here have stated, I was happily surprised to find out that it wasn't as difficult as I thought it was going to be and actually quite fun.

I've canned wild blackberry jam and "pepper sauce" (aka: pepper vinegar, pepper sauce is what most of us down south call it).
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floating pickles

Post  ander217 on 6/13/2010, 9:01 am

AtlantaAnn, it's great to see your pickled beans. Those are my younger daughter's favorite pickles, and I still try to make a batch every year to send her at Christmas.

I see your beans are floating. I can give you a couple of tips about that.

First, it doesn't appear to me that you stuffed your jars tightly enough with beans. They shrink during processing, so you really have to wedge the raw beans in tightly. Floating doesn't affect the safety or taste of the finished product, other than the beans that rise above the liquid may discolor or get a little tough. If you processed them at least the correct time or longer, they are still safe to eat.

Second, I see some of your beans are in quart jars and others are in pints. Don't use a jar larger than the green beans unless you plan to lay beans sideways on top to finish filling it, or use longer beans that you can sort of fold over the top. Again, you want the entire jar filled tightly. Sometimes I place pieces of fruit or pickle sideways on top on purpose to help weight down the others. I always use standard pints rather than wide-mouth for pickled green beans. The narrowed mouth helps keep the beans wedged down.

A lot of things cause pickles to shrivel, including holding the veggies too long before using, using vinegar that's too strong (don't use anything higher than 5% acidity which is standard for commercial vinegar - you can find it written on the jug), processing too long, or air pockets in the veggie. I always choose green beans that have just reached maturity and are still tight and crisp before the seeds have developed. Again, shriveling does not make them unsafe to eat, they just won't be as crisp.

I think your first jars are fantastic. I'd like to say that practice makes perfect, but even after 40 years of pickling and canning I still have occasional batches that shrivel or float.
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Re: Canning?

Post  camprn on 6/13/2010, 11:08 am

Great advice Ander! I also find it helpful to run a butter knife down the inside of the jar to release air bubbles after I fill the jar with the hot vinegar brew. Yum, I love dilly beans!
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Re: Canning?

Post  AtlantaAnn on 6/16/2010, 6:08 pm

Ander...thanx a million for the tips. I am encouraged and will make use of your expertise when I go at it again next week. To be on the safe side, I refrigerated those jars.

Question for ya....how long does it take for the beans to dilly-up and be ready to eat?
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dilly beans

Post  ander217 on 6/16/2010, 8:24 pm

If you waterbathed them, they should be edible at any time.
Fresh pickles which are covered in hot vinegar mix and then stored in the 'fridge without processing usually take a couple of weeks to get really flavorful.
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first batch of canning!

Post  MeyerLemon on 6/16/2010, 8:33 pm

I did 2 batches (12 half pint jelly jars) of lemon marmalade today. Turned out pretty well. Set up, sealed and everything. I'm trying to find 1000 uses for lisbon lemons, since I have tons of them!

So far so good!

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Re: Canning?

Post  camprn on 6/16/2010, 10:53 pm

@AtlantaAnn wrote:Ander...thanx a million for the tips. I am encouraged and will make use of your expertise when I go at it again next week. To be on the safe side, I refrigerated those jars.

Question for ya....how long does it take for the beans to dilly-up and be ready to eat?
I leave the dilly beans and other pickles on the shelf for at least 2 months before opening them. My Elderberry cordial is best after a year.
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Re: Canning?

Post  LaFee on 6/17/2010, 2:00 am

MeyerLemon, sure wish there was a way to take some of those lemons off your hands!


The British make lemon curd, which is very similar to the filling in lemon meringue pie -- and it's gorgeous on toast or English muffins.

And I'm scouting out really good organic lemons at the moment -- one of my husband's colleagues is in Italy, and she sent her grandmother's recipe for limoncello. Good limoncello is an outstanding digestif (after-dinner drink) in the summertime -- put the bottle in the freezer (the alcohol content is high enough that it won't freeze) and serve in cordial glasses after coffee. Refreshing, lightly tangy, lightly sweet...delicious.

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Re: Canning?

Post  camprn on 8/15/2010, 10:17 am

Bump, it's time to can our harvest. This is a good starting point
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Re: Canning?

Post  chocolatepop on 8/15/2010, 9:27 pm

As you know Camp, I've been a canning fool. So far I've done regular pickles, hot pickles, crock pickles, pickled cauliflower, pickled banana peppers, pickled pepperochini, green hot sauce, spaghetti sauce, raspberry jam, blueberry syrup, mild/sweet salsa, and am about to start hot/fiery salsa.

I'm tired Laughing
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Re: Canning?

Post  camprn on 8/28/2010, 3:47 pm

Canning, canning, canning, eat, canning, sleep, eat, work, canning, canning...etc. Shocked
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Re: Canning?

Post  Megan on 8/28/2010, 4:44 pm

@chocolatepop wrote:green hot sauce

That's quite a list, chocolatepop, no wonder you are tired! Recipe for the green hot sauce?? Pretty please?
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Re: Canning?

Post  glasgrl on 8/29/2010, 12:17 am

Has anyone tried canning ketchup? I tried the recipe in the Ball book. It took about 6 hours from start to finish! The longest amount of time was spent cooking the ketchup down and then letting it thicken up. It didn't thicken up as much as I would have liked it too, but at 1:00am, I didn't care too much anymore.

It DOES taste delicious. Very Happy Very similar to the tomato sauce in Britain.

I pureed it in my blender, but there are still some seed pieces in the final product. My husband said to me the following morning, "Are there supposed to be seeds in ketchup?".

Very, very thin ice...

-Michelle
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Re: Canning?

Post  Megan on 8/29/2010, 12:21 am

Haven't tried it yet, but I will make sure to warn hubby before I do.

Laughing
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Re: Canning?

Post  chocolatepop on 8/29/2010, 1:20 am

haahaa michelle! My hubby did something similar after it took like all night to cook down some BBQ sauce, the "look" was suffice!
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Look what I just found!

Post  Megan on 8/29/2010, 9:30 am

This appears to be a free home study course in food preservation. I just signed up for it. The second link is the page just before the signup page -- down at the bottom it says a little more about the course.

https://spock.fcs.uga.edu/ext/food/nchfp_elc/
http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/
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Re: Canning?

Post  glasgrl on 8/29/2010, 9:31 am

@Megan wrote:This appears to be a free home study course in food preservation. I just signed up for it. The second link is the page just before the signup page -- down at the bottom it says a little more about the course.

How interesting. Thank you!

-Michelle
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Re: Canning?

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