December 28, 2009

Canning 2009

I've been boiling-water-bath (BWB) canning for years: fruits, salsa and other tomato products. This year I finally bought a pressure canner as well, took a class through the county extension agency, and got up the nerve to use it.

While I haven't canned nearly the number of jars as some of the people on my canning lists through yahoo (and probably not as many jars as many of my readers), I have plans to do much better next year. Now that I've used my pressure canner, I'm no longer afraid of it and plan to use it more.

I made a lot of jelly this year, but we use it in recipes such as Dump Chicken and glazed pork. Also noticeable this year is the lack of plum jelly and sweet-and-sour plum sauce, because there were no plums due to a late frost. No peaches either. I have one precious pint jar of the S&S plum sauce left in the cupboard from last year.

Each year I keep track of what I've "put up" in a spiral notebook. I also record what recipe I followed, if something failed, or suggestions for next time. Here is what I did in 2009:

10 half-pints apple jelly
8 half-pints mixed fruit jelly
3 pints strawberry jam
2 half-pints strawberry jam
5 pints strawberry lemonade
6 pints blackberry lemonade
1 half-pint blackberries
6 half-pints blackberry jelly
1 pint sliced carrots
6 pint apples
4 quarts sliced apples in light syrup
7 quarts apple pie filling
3 pints apple juice
6 half-pints apple jelly
3 quarts turkey broth
1 pint turkey broth
1 quart chicken broth
1 pint chicken broth
1 quart chicken in broth
1 pint lamb broth
3 pints white bean soup

Everything else went in the freezer. I'm still working on canning instead of freezing and hope that over the next year the amount of non-meat items in the freezer will be less with more in jars on my shelves instead.

The year isn't over yet - I'm at this minute making turkey stock and will can the leftover turkey in the stock this afternoon.

I also have fruit in the freezer for "Triple Berry Jam" - strawberry, blackberry, raspberry - I don't know if I'll get that made and canned before the end of the year or if it will go on next year's list. I often make jelly during the winter when the kitchen isn't so hot already and the heat from cooking is welcome.

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