Pressure canners. The mention of pressure canning and pressure canners sends off alarms for many people. Bombs, lids flying off--maybe even through the roof of the house, and horrible burns. Pressure canners are safe when used properly. Follow the manufacturers instructions!
Beans, soups, broths, meat, fish, poultry, and game can be safely preserved and stored in your pantry. Save freezer space! No last minute rush to defrost something for a meal. Pop open home canned soups for quick meals when you are sick. Chicken soup exactly how you and your family like it. Tough cuts of meat are transformed into a welcome addition to dishes.
The same rules of water bath canning apply:
- Be Ready to Home Can!
- Use clean canning jars
- Use new lids, be sure not to overheat lids
- Use rings that free of rust and only screw on finger tight
- Use current recipes and in case of questions check with university extensions and new books
- Don't overfill jars--use the headspace called for in the recipe
- Remove air bubbles
- Process in the canner for the amount of time called for in the recipe
- Handle hot jars with care--use a jar lifter (I use an oven mitt under the jar as added protection)
- Protect your counter with towels under the cooling jars
- Cover the cooling jars so that they cool down slowly [***Update 30 September 2015: Do not cover the cooling jars. Allow jars to cool at room temperature, away from a draft, and do not disturb***]
- Don't remove the rings until the jars are completely cool
- Remove the rings and check for good seals before storing
Have fun canning, though it can hard work, and fill your pantry with wonderful canned goods for you and your family.
- Check out the book list for reliable recipes and guidance.
- Be sure to read the manual for your pressure canner and/or check the manufacturers website if you have questions.
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