Tuesday, May 17, 2011

If you want to can, read this first

Many cookbooks include sections on food preservation -- home canning, freezing and drying. But if you aim to can food, you must start by reading this book: the Ball Blue Book, the complete book of home preserving. I cannot recommend this resource highly enough. It explains the steps for water bath canning (used for foods like tomatoes, fruits, pickles, jam, jelly and salsa) and for pressure canning (used for low acid foods, like green beans or meals you might want to can, like soups and stews).

I am likely to buy a new canner this year -- it has been 12 years, after all. But well maintained a cannner can last for a long time. And replacement seals for pressure canners are available.

For either method, you need canning jars, lids and rings; tongs and a jar lifter. I will describe the process for canning in future posts. Whether you are new to home canning, or a seasoned pro, take time to read up on canning basics in the Ball Blue Book, or with resources from your Cooperative Extension office. Proper technique will yield excellent results and guarantee safe eating of your creations.


  1. I agree that book is an awesome resource! My wife and I are going to try canning for the first time very soon. I can't wait to try to make our first batch of jam! =)

  2. Very good site, brilliant write up.
    Maybe one or two thumbnails can be added.
    think it should be promoted to front page.
    While at it, may I ask how you setup your review system?
    Thank you.

    Soup Kettle