(Jars of the most delicious wild blackberry jam I made last week!)
As I am only in my second year of canning, I don't feel quite ready to
start giving lots of advice and tutorials quite yet, but I've been
fortunate to find so many great resources this year, so I thought I would pass them on to you, especially those of you who are rather new to it like myself!
Here are the main books that I am using for my preserving this summer:
The one that I have relied on most heavily for fruit is Putting It Up With Honey, which has so many wonderful recipes for those who wish to avoid sugar as a sweetener. Putting Food By is another gift from my MIL, who tells me it is one of the standard books for preserving food. It is just a wealth of information!
I am also using the fermented and cultured recipes in Nourishing Traditions, and The Encyclopedia of Country Living, which also has great preserving directions.
As well, here are some great posts for you to check out for inspiration and how-to tips:
The Simple Women's Cannery and Garden (this relatively new blog is already bursting with canning help- a must read!)
Heavenly Homemakers– Laura has recently done a number of helpful posts on canning:
Canning 101– an excellent photo tutorial showing you exactly what you need to get started
Freezing and Canning Peaches for Winter
How to Make and Can Applesauce
Canning Tomatoes (this is a video, that I unfortunately can't seem to watch on my Mac, but it's supposed to be good!)
Sealing Canning Jars
Open Kettle Food Processing
Using and/or Preserving Fresh Pumpkin
Happy Canning! I'm off to do more pickles tomorrow morning!
What are your favorite canning resources? Share them with the rest of us!
Visit Tammy's Recipes for more kitchen tips!
Just curious to know your thounghts on The Encyclopedia of Country Living in general. I have almost bought it a couple of times the past two years, but wasn’t sure if it was worth it. Thanks!
Jo Ann, I got it from my mom over a year ago, and didn’t delve into it right away (but I had leafed through it while visiting her and thought it looked really good, so she gave it to me). I am only now starting to really explore it and get a feel for it’s worth, but so far, I’m impressed. We don’t live in the country or anything, but even as an avid gardener and someone who cooks everything from scratch and likes to preserve food, I am already finding it very useful. If you did live in the country or had any size of farm, I think it would be extremely useful.
those are a lot of great resources. I have only done jam in the past, but I am wanting to expand 😉 I will have to look into those books and such.
I am fine-tuning many of my recipes, trying to make them less sugar (or none if possible) and less cost. In the past I have relied on commercial pectin for jams, so I am trying out new things this year. I don’t have enough time to do what I want to do (sound familiar) or the produce- my garden really didn’t do well due to cool and TONS of rain and it really doesn’t pay to buy most things and then can it (even with my free or very cheap canning jars). Most things would cost me MORE money not to mention my time too.
My MIL just recommended to me “Put a lid on it”. I have been using “Bernardin’s Guide to Home preserving” which has everything on canning, freezeing, dehyrdrating etc. and is easy to read (and I saw it for about $5 at the store in the canning section). It does have some different types of things like canning without sugar (some use apple juice) and options for different things but most use some forms of pectin you buy. The freezing and dehydrating sections are great though.
I want to learn more, hopefully over time I will…
I have dabbled in it from time to time but this yr. is more productive. My MIL is great at this.
After canning 17 pints of corn that we got from a friend I was disappointed in the quality of the corn. It’s not bad but it is blah.
I am proud to say the corn we grew is yummy.
Thanks Stephanie for this post. I have been trying to find info on canning tomatoes. I’m going to check out that video. Do you have a pickling recipe you use? I tried pickling by couldn’t find a good recipe and I’m wondering if I didn’t have pickling cucumber?? Did you grow that kind specifically?
I have been canning for 31+ years anything and everything – 500 jars per summer (loads of blood, sweat and tears), using water bath and pressure methods, till a few years ago when I connected with the Weston A. Price Foundation and Nourishing Traditions Cookbook. It was a relief to find out that the way I was preserving food destoyed much of the nutrition of it. Since then I have retooled my methods. I found a pectin that does not require sugar to gel, called Pamona’s Universal Pectin. It is available in many grocery stores. I am using more stevia, and other healthy sweeteners. Lacto-fermentaion (so easy!) is also part of my routine now. I still can tomatoes as they are one of the few foods that do not lose nutrients through the process. And I also freeze and dry more foods now. (Frozen corn is wonderful!) Anyway, I was set free – no guilt – of the drudgery of that way of preserving food. The really old methods are so much easier, so much healthier and something I can do all year round rather than just in the simmering summer heat. These are a few of the books I now recommend: Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon (of course), Preserving Food Without Canning or Freezing (from Chelsea Green Publishing) and Wild Fermentation by Sandor Katz. (And by the way, I have Carla Emery’s Book and have enjoyed it immensely!)