Careful! canning can become one fierce addiction! After all, my canning addiction launched this little business.
Maybe you have an over flowing garden, maybe you like the idea of stocking up your own pantry, maybe you want to make a few gifts… Get yourself hooked on canning! Throw yourself a preservation party!
Sweet Preservation has some great ideas for throwing a canning party. I love #5 “Jam Out!” but they missed my all time favorite #jam: Jam Don’t Shake
Don’t let canning intimidate you! It is easier than you think. when I started I would break my canning projects into smaller tasks that I could come back to the next day. Did you know that you can make pickles and jam 1 jar at a time without the intimidating canning/ boiling water process?? Here are a few simple recipe ideas to get you started.
- Tomatoes. Crock-Pot tomato sauce is a great basic sauce and the easy cooking process guarantees you never waste another tomato.
- Cucumbers. Refrigerator pickles were a staple in my house growing up. Slice cucumbers into vinegar and seasonings, rest for few hours and viola! Pickles.
- Zucchini. The plants that just keep giving! Diced fine for a pickle relish that is far superior in texture than any cucumber relish (imho).
- Eggplant. I found this pickle from Tart & Sweet & never looked back. Half my eggplants go to this & half my eggplants get sliced, breaded and frozen for eggplant parmesan (freezing! another great way to put-it-up!)
- Fruit Jam. Our favorite use for excess and over ripe fruit! Any fruits can be combined and cooked down to make jam but Strawberry is the gate-way jam… careful you could get hooked on jamming!
- Jelly. Preserves for the perfectionist. Little room for error, the finest jellies are delicate and crystal clear. Seedy fruits like blackberries are an excellent choice for jelly. This way there are no seeds to crunch. Find a berry patch and then make Blackberry Jelly.
You are just itching to put things in a jar now, aren’t you?? Check out these blogs and books by other canners.
Food in Jars – Food writer and canning teacher, Marissa has excellent books that tackle small-batch preserving for the home canner.
Mrs Wheelbarrows Kitchen – A fellow food preservationist, Cathy focuses on practical, seasonal, & local. She even has a new book coming out this fall!
Tart & Sweet – Canning for the modern kitchen. Kelly & Jessie put-up some truly unique flavors and I love that most of their stuff is low or no sugar!
The Ball Blue Book – you can’t call yourself a canner if you don’t own at least one copy of this!