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Simple Ways to Preserve Fruits and Vegetables

Canning, Freezing, Drying and Pickling Your Harvest


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Canning is one of those things I miss about living in New England! We had a huge raspberry patch in the backyard along with a wonderful garden! Knowing we picked and canned all those home grown veggies/fruits is beyond compare! I miss having home made raspberry jam on my homemade toast or homemade English muffin...I live in S. FL, so canning fresh berries of any kind is pretty much no existent..someday I will be able to do it again! Report
Please note, it's important to have a rack in your pot to avoid breakage of the glass jars on the bottom of the pot. If you don't have a canner, you can create your own rack by tying lid rings together with twist ties to cover the bottom of the pot. Report
Mmmm homemade pickles (not sweet), jelly, cinnamon apples, pickled okra, etc.

When we first moved into our house we had an arbor with grape vines. I made jelly 2 or 3 years, but then the grapes started dying. All of our grape vines have died and I need to replant. I never had a chance to make plum jelly. The birds always beat me to the ripe plums. That is okay though… I don’t like plum jelly as much.

I helped my grandma with canning when I was little. We would use our own cucumbers to make pickles. If they were large cucumbers we would slice them. Smaller ones we left whole. I don’t remember cutting off any part of the smaller cucumbers like is mentioned in the article…
“Another tip: If using cucumbers to make your own pickles, you must remove and discard a 1/16-inch slice from the blossom ends of each cuke. (Blossoms may contain an enzyme that causes excessive softening of pickles.)”
At a garage sale I found a small food caner. I can cane 6 jars at a time .The jars do not touch the bottom of the pan . if using a pot put a folded tea towel in the pot. to make the jars not touch the metal of the pan. Report
It's been a while since I've had science class, but I think we've got acid/base balance backwards here. But good ideas. Now, if I could find some good veggies... Report
I recently started lacto-fermented "pickling" of vegetables. (Think sauerkraut like your grandmother made it.) The food needs to be refrigerated at the end of the fermentation period, but you do have a probiotic food that lasts several months in the fridge. Like yogurt, these foods are easier to digest. Report
You can get lots of really good, reliable information about canning from your local Extension service - even if you are a city dweller. Check your state's agriculture department to find your local office. Report
I had a nutrition class where we were told it's not recommended that you can your own food unless you really know what your doing due to the risk of bacteria. So if you do it, be very careful! Report
I freeze quite a bit of fresh produce from my garden and farmer's markets or when things are in season and cheap. Thanks for sharing the link to pickyourown...some really good information there as well as this article. Report
We had a large garden this year, and I'm a fan of U Pick farms and the farmer's market.
My freezers are full of fruit, homemade soups and vegetables. I've canned green beans, apple sauce, apple butter, salsa and sugar-free jam. I've dried many kinds of herbs and tomatoes and peppers. I am definitely ready for winter! Besides getting fresher, healthier low-sodium food, I have lowered our average monthly grocery bill by $70! Report
Hi I had the Privildge of growing up with an Italian GrandMother that was a super gardener. We grew 500 tomato plants and canned our own sauce, juice and paste. We also, "put up" jellies, relishes and pretty much, anything that could fit in a jar. When we got some money, Mom & Dad bought a freezer. Needless to say, we didn't starve...As I grew up and moved on my own (appt then condo) I had no room for a garden nor an extra freezer. No big deal...NOT ! ! ! I so missed my FRESH, NO Chemical, Knew What Was In It FOOD...I bought a home with a yard and have been canning and freezing on my own for 40 years. I wouldn't have it anyother way.
The link in the article... is FABULOUS. Report
I enjoy pickling green tomatoes and hot peppers. They're a great accompaniment to greens and cabbage in the winter. I also like pickling beets. Yummy! Report
I love to can and have done it since I was 13 years old. I have always used both a pressure canner and a regular canner. Now we can sausage in the winter and venison if someone gives us a deer. Beef has such a unique flavor canned, as do the other meats. Chicken is good, but a lot of work to de-bone in large quantities and I would only do free range chickens. Of course we always can meats in a pressure canner. When we traveled and camped with our family, we had good meat ready to use. If I'm not around to help, our son takes over and cans the meats. Report
pH is a negative logarithm -- what that means is that the lower the numeric pH, the higher acidity, and conversely, the higher the numeric pH, the less acid (or more alkaline) the substance. High acidity, low pH, so the reference to acid foods of pH 4.6 or greater should actually read less, meaning more acidic. Report
While a fun article to read, I'm a little confused at their acidic nomenclature. I could understand where pH 4.6 is the "magic" number where bacteria wouldn't grow, but I think they have their labels mixed up. Foods with a pH less than 4.6 are more acidic (like lemon juice, vinegar, and other fruits), and foods greater than pH 4.6 are less acidic. Report

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