Joining the Canvolution.

by Tanya on July 26, 2010

Mason Jar LOVE!

Mason Jar LOVE!

I recently spent some time with my closest girlfriend Dawn. It’s hard to believe we live under 300 miles away and we haven’t seen each other since Thanksgiving. Dawn is one of those people who is oozing with wisdom and knowledge, especially for only turning, well, early 30-something this month! I’ve been going through a serious transformation this year and really feel the need to simplify my life. One of the things I have been really interested in is learning how to make preserves and can them myself. Dawn showed me how and now I can’t wait to get started. I hope my kiddos find it as interesting as I do. I immediately turned to the web for help with tips and recipes. Quickly I found several resources for help including this great blog called Canning Across America and Fresh Preserving from the Ball company.

I was really happy to learn that this new venture of mine is very affordable! Yay! Most of my hobbies are pricier ones. Look see here for the basic supplies needed to can. Amazon even has a Canning Store now!! So of course, knowing me, this new passion will lead to learning more about gardening, then composting and so on and on and on…. I’m positive I’ll be sharing more about canning in the future! Let me know if you Can, what you Can or if you don’t Can and you have an interest in it, if this post gave you shove:-)!

Pepper Jelly
Ingredients

* 3/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
* 1/4 cup chopped fresh hot green pepper, such as jalapeno or serrano
* 1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
* 6 cups sugar
* 4 ounces pectin (recommended: Certo)
* 4 drops green food coloring (I chose not to use the food coloring, so much prettier with the natural colors)
* Special Equipment: 6 (1/2-pint) canning jars with lids

Directions

Process bell pepper and hot pepper in a food processor until finely minced. Combine pepper mixture, vinegar, and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Remove from heat and add pectin and food coloring. Pour into sterilized jars and seal*.

*Cook’s Note: Follow USDA guidelines for proper sterilization and canning procedures.

Properly-handled sterilized equipment will keep canned foods in good condition for years. Sterilizing jars is the first step of preserving foods.

Sterilizing Tips:
Jars should be made from glass and free of any chips or cracks. Preserving or canning jars are topped with a glass, plastic, or metal lid, which has a rubber seal. Two piece lids are best for canning, as they vacuum seal when processed.

To sterilize jars, before filling with jams, pickles, or preserves, wash jars and lids with hot, soapy water. Rinse well and arrange jars and lids open sides up, without touching, on a tray. Leave in a preheated 175 degree F oven for 25 minutes. Or, boil the jars and lids in a large saucepan, covered with water, for 15 minutes.

Use tongs when handling the hot sterilized jars, to move them from either boiling water or the oven. Be sure the tongs are sterilized too, by dipping the ends in boiling water for a few minutes.

As a rule, hot preserves go into hot jars and cold preserves go into cold jars. All items used in the process of making jams, jellies, and preserves must be clean. This includes any towels used, and especially your hands.

After the jars are sterilized, you can preserve the food. It is important to follow any canning and processing instructions included in the recipe and refer to USDA guidelines about the sterilization of canned products.

Please share the LOVE:-)!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa July 29, 2010 at 6:43 am

This is great! Can’t wait to see how well you do. We recently moved to a 5 acre property, once we get the place cleaned up the first thing I am doing is planting a veggie garden. I was thinking the other day how both of my grandmother’s used to can every thing from Tomatoes to pickles & now I will be able to do that too. Have fun & keep us posted.

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Tanya July 29, 2010 at 8:36 am

Lisa, may I ask what city this property is in? We are wanting to do the same, as I’m in desperate need of more property, I have BIG plans, lol! Thanks for checking out my blog!!

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memarie lane July 29, 2010 at 9:26 am

I also just learned how to can. I spent all last week making preserves. I can’t believe I waited so long to learn because I thought it would be so hard, and it’s really so easy.

Reply

Tanya July 29, 2010 at 4:21 pm

Hi Marie! You know that’s the same reason I haven’t learned until now, but I’m so happy I finally did! You’ll have to share some fave recipes as you find them!!

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