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Old 06-20-2011, 02:09 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,682 posts, read 83,258,368 times
Reputation: 41529

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Just saw the last posting: I was getting ready to post about canning: I just did my first of the season.

Now, here is the story:

Last Sat I stopped at a Farmers market to pick up some blueberries. We usually go picking them but hubby has to have surgery on Thurs so picking this year was out. Anyway, they were selling Gooseberries. Even though I am an old lady, I am also a city girl and had never even seen a Gooseberry. Thinking it would be fun to try a new jam this year I bought a quart of them. I won't tell you how much I paid, but I know why specialty stores charge so much for Gooseberry jam.

Anyway, today I decided to make the jam. After sorting through about 6 or 7 recipes I picked the one that seemed the easiest. One thing I didn't realize was the berries had to be de-stemmed (is that a word?) also the blossom end end needed to be pulled out. An hour or so later, they are all cleaned and ready to start smashing. Now that in itself was a job. The food mill would have taken forever so my hands began to smash. It actually was sorta fun, pop, pop, pop, kind a like popping the plastic bubbles.

I finished that, did my measuring, put the berries in the pot and added the ingredients as the recipe read. I cooked and boiled, and cooked and boiled, rolling boil until it was beginning to thicken. Then into the clean jars, and into the boiling water bath. all is well, pretty color and ready to take out of canner. Sounds great right? Wrong, it didn't set at all. Now, I have been doing jams for over 50 years and rarely have I seen one that did not set up at all. Either, I am going to be surprised and it will set in a few days, or I will have very tart syrup for the waffles and pancakes.

Yes, the canning season has started...

Nita
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:12 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,682 posts, read 83,258,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by younglisa7 View Post
I am finally ready to take the plunge. I bought a pressure canner 2 years ago but I have been afraid to try it. Last Saturday I went to a canning class held at one of the local Extension offices. It was well worth it. It was a 4 hour class and it was hands on. The class got to prepare and can tomatoes using both a water canner and a pressure cooker. I highly recommend looking for a class like this if you are a beginner. I am going to try salsa today from the tomatoes they sent home with me...we had extra
You were smart to attend the class and good luck. Canning is fun and rewarding. If for no other reason, you know exactly what is in those jars, sugar, salt, preservatives etc. Salsa is our favorite to make but it requires a lot of chopping, pealing, etc.

Nita
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Old 06-22-2011, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Michigan
859 posts, read 1,897,647 times
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I am back, was on vacation
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Old 06-23-2011, 08:11 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,309 posts, read 59,595,182 times
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My local Extension didn't have a class this year. I'm waffling about investing in a pressure canner, but want to take the class before I wade into that water ...

In other news, I slammed together five pints of multi-berry jam -- whatever is leftover from the previous Saturday's farmers market goes into the jam on Friday night. Mulberries, blueberries, strawberries and black raspberries made up this batch, with 1/4 C of honey and low-sugar pectin. Turned out pretty yummy!
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Old 06-23-2011, 08:25 AM
 
Location: Michigan
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my local dont have anything either...

lol you sound like me everything but the Kitchen Sink

going to get Starwberrys for my jams....already got Rhubarb. Waiting till Hubby leaves on Sunday So I can take my mind of things.

Wonder how the Honey would do with the Strawberry Rhubarb Jam ..
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Old 06-24-2011, 08:31 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,682 posts, read 83,258,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohiogirl81 View Post
My local Extension didn't have a class this year. I'm waffling about investing in a pressure canner, but want to take the class before I wade into that water ...

In other news, I slammed together five pints of multi-berry jam -- whatever is leftover from the previous Saturday's farmers market goes into the jam on Friday night. Mulberries, blueberries, strawberries and black raspberries made up this batch, with 1/4 C of honey and low-sugar pectin. Turned out pretty yummy!
I really depends on what you want to can and how much you can use. We did the pressure cooker thing for years, but have now donated the cooker to a community thrift shop. Our canning consists of jams, fruits, pickled veggies like beets, beans etc, salsa and relishes. They all work very well without the pressure cooker. If you are going like canned veggies, and thing like that the cooker is fine.

Nita

ps:update on my gooseberry jam: it did not thicken up like I would have wanted but is better than original reported.
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Old 06-24-2011, 09:19 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,309 posts, read 59,595,182 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nmnita View Post
I really depends on what you want to can and how much you can use.
Yeah, that's what I'm trying to figure out. Would I really use jars and jars of green beans etc. enough to justify the expense of the canner.

Maybe if I canned meats, but I'd just as soon freeze those.
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:34 PM
 
Location: Michigan
859 posts, read 1,897,647 times
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Yup I bought a cheap canner from my GF for 25, but have not used it yet. Not sure I will even use it this year. I want to know how to use it for sure first.

I am so used to using the Water bathing too...
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Old 06-25-2011, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
71,682 posts, read 83,258,368 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jasmin71 View Post
Yup I bought a cheap canner from my GF for 25, but have not used it yet. Not sure I will even use it this year. I want to know how to use it for sure first.

I am so used to using the Water bathing too...
to both you and Ohiogirl, unless you have large families and really do think you will use a lot of this stuff, I just don't see the value. We also canned potatoes and carrots, but the potatoes had a different taste; other than maybe for a couple pots of winter soup I just do see any reason to can veggies. It isn't like in our grandparents and great grandparents days when they depended on canning for winter survival.

NIta
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Old 06-25-2011, 08:10 PM
 
Location: Michigan
859 posts, read 1,897,647 times
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I agree, I would like to do Beef Stew and Chicken Soup but I just aint got it together yet lol


Come monday i be canning Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
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