Back in the day, many people enjoyed the fun and rewarding activity of canning. It was a great way to follow the example of the squirrel that hid food he knew he would need in the winter.
It still is. Canning during the spring, summer and fall allows people to put many different kinds of chemical-free, tasty, ready-to-eat foods in jars that they can access in the winter, or even years into the future when they need it. It’s a great way to exercise self-reliance.
As with a lot of things, people just don’t seem to have the time or the interest to can anymore. But my suggestion is to get back into it if you used to do it, and to get started doing it if you never have.
One of the great things about canning is that you never have to worry about a power outage spoiling the food that you’ve canned and put in your kitchen pantry. You can put aside vegetables, fruits, preserves, jams, jellies, pickles, chili, stews, sauces, meat, fish and many more food items into glass jars that can be quickly made into a meal or a snack.
Once you’ve decided to do some home canning, you need to choose either a pressure canner or a water bath canner. The first could cost you about $120, but you can probably get the second one for around $20. Before you automatically choose the less expensive canner, keep in mind that it will be something you can use for years. Regardless, it’s important that your jars are properly sealed after you fill them.
There are plenty of books and articles you can find in the library and online to learn the best ways to do canning, so I won’t go into them here. But make sure you follow an approved recipes to assure proper acidity/salinity, mark the jar lids with the contents and the date, then store them in a cool, dark and dry place (without the rings).
When was the last time you did any canning? Readers of this blog could really use your insight into the kinds of foods that you can, the type of canner that you use, and the tips and tricks that you could share. I really hope to hear from you about this.