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Old 06-06-2015, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,910 posts, read 83,551,069 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momtothree View Post
This is a very long thread so I know it's probably asked already but....I would love to can but terrified of botulism. Especially when it says it's odorless and tasteless.

Soooo is there a sure fire way to tell if something been contaminated? Other than listening for the pop of the seal? (and no bulging on top etc)
that is about it; if they seal they should be just fine. I have been canning, some with my parents, some on my own and with my daughter for about 65 years.I doubt we have 2 jars a year that do not seal. I will say , we do not do the pressure cooker, (canner) processed foods anymore. We are just into things that are pickeled or have enough acid to simply use a hot bath. We not do veggies except okra, tomatoes, and beets. We do lots of berries, relishes, other fruits and sauses. Even then we usually have about 100 to 150 jars. We do freeze green beans and a few other veggies.

Just start out slow, do things that are almost always a success like jams and canned friuts as well as things like tomatoes. Even if you only do a dozen jars the first year, it is a start and you can expand from there. Also remember though you shouldn't have trouble with botulism, not everything you can the first year will end up perfect. It took us years to get the perfect pickle and the same to get the perfect blend of spices so our pacante sause was hot enough for us but not over powering.
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Old 06-06-2015, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,363 posts, read 59,787,282 times
Reputation: 54006
Quote:
Originally Posted by momtothree View Post
This is a very long thread so I know it's probably asked already but....I would love to can but terrified of botulism. Especially when it says it's odorless and tasteless.

Soooo is there a sure fire way to tell if something been contaminated? Other than listening for the pop of the seal? (and no bulging on top etc)
If you follow the tested recipe and instructions, and the jars seal, you should be fine. Applesauce is a good first product, because it is foolproof.

Botulism isn't an issue, however, with high acid food and properly pickled foods. If you want to start canning, start with fruit and pickled vegetables.
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Old 06-20-2015, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
3,662 posts, read 2,064,808 times
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Ok semi stupid question. I went strawberry picking today. I sent my husband to the store for pectin. He bought liquid where I almost always use powder. I only have used liquid for my vanilla pear jam. So will it work just as good for strawberry jam? Should I just put it away until the fall? I would hate to ruin my beautiful berries!
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Old 06-20-2015, 05:24 PM
 
Location: The Cascade Foothills
10,953 posts, read 8,681,156 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by magicshark View Post
Ok semi stupid question. I went strawberry picking today. I sent my husband to the store for pectin. He bought liquid where I almost always use powder. I only have used liquid for my vanilla pear jam. So will it work just as good for strawberry jam? Should I just put it away until the fall? I would hate to ruin my beautiful berries!
You don't even need pectin.

I've been making jam for the 40 years and have never used store bought pectin. Fruit and sugar, that's all.

You have to cook it longer to get it to the gel stage, but that is the only difference. You can use a thermometer to know when you get it to the gel stage (look up on the internet what your temperature should be) and then use a spoon that's been put in the freezer to test it (again, there are instructions on the internet).

Easy peasy.
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Old 06-21-2015, 10:04 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,363 posts, read 59,787,282 times
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Were there instructions on the box of liquid pectin? I'd just follow them ... or go buy some powdered pectin and save the liquid for another project.

ETA: Found a recipe for you:

http://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_07/stra...am_liquid.html

Liquid pectin will give you a softer set, FYI.
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Old 06-21-2015, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Massachusetts
3,662 posts, read 2,064,808 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
Were there instructions on the box of liquid pectin? I'd just follow them ... or go buy some powdered pectin and save the liquid for another project.

ETA: Found a recipe for you:

National Center for Home Food Preservation | How Do I? Jam and Jelly

Liquid pectin will give you a softer set, FYI.
Thanks. I just got back from buying powder. There was no strawberry recipe with the package he bought.
Just washed the berries and now on to jam making!!

Oh and while I do have recipes that I use that don't use pectin I am too nervous/unsure of my skills to skip it with strawberries. Someday I will be confident enough, I hope!
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Old 06-21-2015, 10:50 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,910 posts, read 83,551,069 times
Reputation: 41735
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cinebar View Post
You don't even need pectin.

I've been making jam for the 40 years and have never used store bought pectin. Fruit and sugar, that's all.

You have to cook it longer to get it to the gel stage, but that is the only difference. You can use a thermometer to know when you get it to the gel stage (look up on the internet what your temperature should be) and then use a spoon that's been put in the freezer to test it (again, there are instructions on the internet).

Easy peasy.
Well,for me it depends on the type of jam I am making. I have a few favorite jams I do not use pectin in, but many I do. Yes, it is about the same, just takes a lot longer if you do not use pectin, but there are times when I am doing a lot of jam making and canning in a day or over a few days and I don't want to take the time to depend on the long method.
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Old 06-21-2015, 03:26 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
3,662 posts, read 2,064,808 times
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Because I had so many strawberries I decided to try to make a jam without added pectin. Italian Food Forever Strawberry Basil Jam It makes very little so if I screwed up no big deal.
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Old 06-21-2015, 04:05 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,363 posts, read 59,787,282 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by magicshark View Post
Italian Food Forever Strawberry Basil Jam It makes very little so if I screwed up no big deal.
How fun! Let us know how it turns out.

Last year I experimented with a peach jam with an infusion of Earl Grey tea. Wow, was that ever good. I love playing with small batches of unusual recipes. I like to make tomato jam, which calls for lemon juice, so once I substituted lime juice - what a fantastic difference it made!
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Old 06-22-2015, 06:31 AM
 
Location: Massachusetts
3,662 posts, read 2,064,808 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
How fun! Let us know how it turns out.

Last year I experimented with a peach jam with an infusion of Earl Grey tea. Wow, was that ever good. I love playing with small batches of unusual recipes. I like to make tomato jam, which calls for lemon juice, so once I substituted lime juice - what a fantastic difference it made!
Well that little bit I put aside tasted really good. It firmed up but I had refrigerated that. I have a good feeling about the ones I canned though.

That peach jam sounds great! I have not made tomato jam yet. It is definitely on my list and I think I will use lime. It sounds perfect.
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