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Adventures in Canning

March 7, 2012

Today was my first ever attempt at canning anything… ever.  That having been said, I think it was an overall success.  Total produced was four pints of strawberry sauce, three pints of strawberry jam and four pints of salsa.  All were made totally from scratch, without anything artificial.

To be perfectly honest, the four pints of strawberry sauce were also supposed to be jam–but since I am often a better skimmer than reader, I got a few directions mixed up and it ended up much more liquid than jam.  However, praise God, despite it not solidifying properly, it was still absolutely delicious.  It ended up much more like a strawberry sauce you might buy for making shortcakes or topping ice cream.  So I’m definitely keeping it and I’m sure I’ll find some use for sweetened strawberry goodness.

All in all, the experience was good.  First time canning was definitely expensive, although I can easily see how it will pay off in the long term.  And I learned several very important lessons:

1)  Don’t can salsa last–evidently all the exposure to high acid foods and steam and hot water opened my hands up to be highly susceptible to the jalapeno juice when I chopped my peppers.  Normally not an issue, my hands are in agony at the moment.

2) Try not to get so ambitious in the future–three rounds of canning is pretty excessive even for me.  I am reminding myself that vacation days are not meant to be totally consumed by work.  Although, admittedly, I know this will not be the last vacation day I take that goes the way of the “weekend homesteader.”

3) Actually read all of the instructions.  Every last one of them.  First…

Despite all of this, the best news is that everything turned out wonderfully.  The flat of strawberries we bought at the Florida Strawberry Festival did not go to waste in the process of learning this new skill.  I will definitely be canning again.

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From → canning

One Comment
  1. I always enjoy seeing people come to canning. It is great fun and if you don’t go overboard, you can save money and eat well! Loved your very honest post!

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