Question about canning

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  • Too bad I don't live closer :-( Thank you for the info!!

    Ya know what I just remembered????? I have a HUGE blackberry tree (yes a TREE!) in my yard!! I just moved in here at the beginning of August and totally forgot about it!

    It's huge, and the lady who sold us the house said she used to lay a blanket down and shake the branches she could reach on a ladder and then would fold up the blanket to take them in. I remember eating these straight off the tree in September, GOD they were yummy!

    Now I'm all excited!!!
  • Canning
    Canning is expensive to get started, just buying the jars. However, sometimes you can find them at garage sales, or maybe and elderly neighbor, no longer able to can will give you hers. We have a large garden, so in the long run it saves me money. But more important, the food is SO much better than store-bought. If you ever have home-canned green beans, you'll be ruined for life from using store bought, regardless of brand name. I can green beans, tomatoes, pickled okra, various pickles and make and can my own salsa, spaghetti sauce. I freeze corn, purple hull peas, butter beans and various varieties of each. If you don't have a garden, you'll still save money. Farmer's Markets are great or community gardens. Sometimes I think it's even more frugal if you figure in fertilizer, pesticides, or have to pay for your water. I also make my own jams and jellies, which I think is expensive by the time I buy sure-jell at about $2.00 a batch, let alone the cost of sugar. I only use what is free to me: grapes, muscadines, peaches, blackberries and apples (although I don't care all that much for apple jelly. I make my own labels and give them as gifts also. If you give away canned stuff, insist on the return of jars - or no more give aways.
  • If you have a Big Lots near you they usually have the best prices on jars!
  • Home canning
    HI ALL,

    TKS fran ind.
  • I would love to learn to can salsa-- I make it every year from my garden, but don't know much about canning. How do you do it? Is there a good book or website that would give me the basics?

    I have made jelly and apple butter in the past, but anything else seems much more complicated.
  • There are a lot of good books out there on canning and prserving foods. I personally learned to can from the Ball Blue Book. Check your library. Also check with your local Cooperative Extension Office in your county, they can provide you with a vast amount of information on gardening, canning and preserving. If you already know how to make your salsa your half way there! Canning it will be a breeze!
  • KMMYO is right about Big Lots being the best price for jars. Don't ever buy them at the grocery store, they are all way high. You would want the pint size jars for salsa.

    If you have a county extension service office, they have a great canning book with recipes. Also, Ball's "Blue Book" is a good one. Use your favorite recipe for salsa and follow the guidelines for canning. You woulld just need a water bath canner for tomatoe products, which aren't too expensive. When you can green beans, you're supposed to use a pressure canner, which are very expensive, at least $100.00. I never looked, but I bet you could buy one over the internet for a lot less. Mine is an antique, given to me by my grandmother. In fact, lucky me, all of my equipment and most of my jars have all been passed down to me from various family members.

    I rely on Sur Jel for all my jams and jellies. When I was a young girl, my grandma showed me how to make jelly without it, but the one time I tried to that way, my grape jelly turned out like rock candy. I had to throw away all the jars because I couldn't get the jelly out!!
  • Thanks for the info guys- I will definetely get the Ball Blue book and if my garden does well this year I think I'll have my mil come and help me learn. It would be a good bonding experience I don't think she's done salsa, but always cans tomatoes. I know she has a pressure canner that I can borrow if I want to do green beans, etc.

    Okay I'm getting excited about this! I did buy some veggie seeds yesterday. Think I'll sit down and plan my garden today!
  • Hi everyone,
    I am new here but love the topic. I inherited my canning stuff when my parents divorced (at least something good came from the divorce!). I have purchased several books on the subject which definately help. My favorite is "The Busy Person's Guide to Preserving Food" by Janet Chadwick. It not only discusses canning, but also freezing, drying, etc. Very easy to understand. Also a good reference is "Putting Food By" by Janet Greene, Ruth Hertzberg, and Beatrice Vaughan. My favorite relish recipe came from "Pickles & Relishes" by Andrea Chesman. My favorite salsa recipe came from a friend at work. I HAVE to can my salsa in quarts...pints just go too quickly! My friends at work always talk me into bringing salsa and they bring the chips! I basically plant a "salsa garden" ---tomatoes, parsley, peppers ---but I can't get onions to grow Maybe I'll try again this year. But growing the food and then canning it is doubly satisfying:p I would really like to get a pressure canner, but have heard horror stories and they make me nervous. I have heard if you have the seal checked every year they are okay, that the problems happen with dry rotted seals. Maybe I'll be brave this year. Or I'll just put up my beans and such with my new Foodsaver (a vacuum and seal machine).