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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Canning Like Crazy







That time of the year!
Been busy trying to free up some space in the fridge from all the veggies in the garden.
In pint and half pint size, I counted some 86 jars me and my dear friend down the road that goes to church with me, Linda Z. and some from Pat.  It was an all day event. Dill and sweet pickles and sweet pickle relish and some dill beans, ocra, and banana peppers.  Praise the Lord we got the ac window unit in and in the kitchen which really helped out! Have a good week!
***Update***


I used a "Back to Basics" brand steam canner for the hot water bath. (See link). I used both pint & half pint jars. It's recommended to use new canning jar lids, but if it's a ball brand, and they are in good shape, I'll reuse it. If it doesn't seal, like a couple of them didn't I'll just re can them..Put it in toward the end of the time, to let it get hot to make a good seal with a new lid and it was fine. Fifteen minutes processing time was standard for making pickles.
For pickles you can use whatever kind of cucumbers you like...You can also pickle other veggies, such as beans, ocra, peppers, squash, zuchini...I use the

Ball Book the most for reference on canning for different things. If you have that book, you will learn a lot! And they don't cost much either! A person who cans, must have one! Also, you can pick up your supplies at Walmart and most places.
 I got the set of the magnet lid picker upper thing, canning tongs, canning funnel and plastic bubble getter outer. I got my steam canner at a downtown feed and seed place, but they sell them online. The advantage to the steamer canner for hot water bath canning is that you use a small amount of water to can and it works just like the big hot water canner does. You just can't can but so many jars at a time. Max 9 pint and half gallon jars, and a little more for half pint jars.

This time around, I had some (Mrs. Wages type) pickle mixes for canning that you just add that mix to vinegar, sugar (if pickles are sweet) and spices. I had bought a bunch of those pickle packets when they were on clearance.  I don't do an elaborate pickle recipe, I just try to do the easiest recipe I can use.  For the relish, I used the Ball Book Sweet Pickle Relish Recipe, since I didn't have a lot of green peppers on hand. I did Sweet and Dill pickles and sweet relish. I still have pickles left over from last year, but I had so many cukes, I just had to use them and I was running lower on the sweet pickles which Mark prefers. I'm more of a dill person or "sweet and sour", a mixture of both..

There is also "Refridgerator Pickles" in which it is the easiest way to go yet. However, you have to have room in your fridge to store them. Requires no (processing) canning, just putting the cukes in vinegar and spices and letting it set in fridge for a while before eating. They last a good while in the fridge. You can make dill or sweet for those too. You can even buy the mix online if you don't want to do it from scratch.
Good website for pickle/relish recipes here.
I usually double the recipes so I can can more at a time. I substitute when needed with other ingredients.
After you finish canning, make sure you put the jars somewhere there isn't alot of draft so they can seal at a uniform temp and time. The sound of lids popping are music to my ears. Before I go to bed at night, I make sure they've all popped in, and if there are some that haven't I put them in the fridge until I can re do them. Don't forget to take the canning rings off when the seals are good and done and cooled too. (Unless you are going to give them away or sell them.) Pickles won't be ready to eat until several weeks, so keep eating the ones you have until the new ones get done! 
Any more questions, let me know!
So, until the tomatoes come in, Happy canning, everyone!

10 comments:

  1. Wow Laura...you've been busy! Now do you heat these jars to seal? I've never canned before but would like to learn. What do you use to pickle? I have burpless cucumbers in my garden....could I pickle those? I appreciate any tips!
    Thanks,
    Patti ;)

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  2. Now that is one pretty, pretty, sight my dear Laura!!! I love the look of canned goods and the satisfaction its labor brings....How beautiful your hard work is!!! Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

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  3. WOW! Lara
    Looks like you've been busy!
    All we have ready is lettuce and beets ~ looks like it will be a while for anything else.
    Prim Blessings
    Robin

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  4. Holy smokes does that look wonderful!! I love to see others who can...the young ladies aren't doing much of it any more. I love to can and pickle...what a sense of satisfaction and you can't beat the taste!! I did a batch of salsa today but it will be awhile before everything is ready around here. Thanks for sharing, it sure makes me smile!! :)

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  5. oh the eatins at your house are going to be yummy...it all looks sooo good..glad the old A/C was working...cause I did 37 jars of strawberry jam..and its hot work..but so satisfying too.;)

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  6. Wow now thats alot of canning. I thought I canned alot of pickles at 36. But you blew me away. Looks yummy.
    Have great day friend
    Granny Trace

    www.grannytracescrapsandsquares.com

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  7. Looks so yummy Laura!You are a busy bee!Have a wonderful week!big hugs michelle

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  8. Looks wonderful Laura! My canning has not started yet , hope it cools off just a little when it does. No A/C. Hope you have a wonderful day and the weekend coming up.
    Colleen

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  9. I did an update to this post for more clarification on canning pickles, fyi! Thanks for all the comments! Laura

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  10. Laura you are the BEST!!! Thank you sooooo much for the info on canning. I do have a question on relish though...when do you grind all the cucs up for the relish?...before or after adding the vinegar/spices?
    Thanks a bunch for adding this great info. I really appreciate it!!!
    Blessings,
    patti :)

    ReplyDelete

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A native of Amherst Co.,Va. grew up the eldest of 2. I have one brother and 2 wonderful neices and 3 dear nephews. I spent most of my adult life in Lynchburg, VA and currently reside in Amherst Co. again with my wonderful husband Mark, and two sweet kitties, Snowball and Graylin. I love being creative and love nature and God's creatures. My mother has been very instrumental in influencing me in being crafty, creative, having a love of gardening and working around the house. I love animals, crafting, organizing, decluttering, cooking, decorating, hospitality, exercising, reading the bible and enjoying God's creation.

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