Thursday, August 20, 2009

Pressure Canning Vegetables

Yummy! Nothing like home canned vegetables from the garden. ALL VEGETABLES MUST BE PROCESSED IN A PRESSURE CANNER!
  • Select the best quality vegetables at the peak of maturity for best results. Remember, the quality of the finished product will never be better than what you start with.
  • Process as soon as possible after picking.
  • Sort vegetables for size, and remove any that are under ripe, over ripe, bruised, or blemished.
  • Wash thoroughly.
  • Check jars to make sure there are no cracks or chips and check closure bands for dents or rust.
  • Wash jars and bands in hot, soapy water and rinse well.
  • Follow manufacturer’s directions for correct preparation of lids.
  • Read and follow manufacturer’s directions for the canner you are using. If your pressure canner uses a dial gauge, have the gauge tested annually for accuracy.
Generally, correct pressure canner methods include:
  1. Add two (2) inches of boiling water to the bottom of cooker.
  2. Add jars (my pressure canner holds either 7 quarts or 19 pints that are stacked)
  3. Put lid on pressure canner. Do not put pressure regulator on at this point.
  4. Exhaust steam for 10‐12 minutes.
  5. Close petcock and bring pressure to that recommended for your altitude.
  6. Start processing time as soon as correct pressure is reached.
  7. Check gauge often to make sure adequate pressure is maintained. If using a weighted gauge canner, listen for the jiggle or rocking of the weight that indicates correct pressure.
  8. Remove canner from heat at end of processing time.
  9. Allow canner to cool naturally. A pressure canner may take 30‐45 minutes took cool. Do not force cool a pressure canner.
  10. Wait an additional two minutes before opening your pressure canner after the cooker has cooled sufficiently to decrease the pressure inside. Then, remove the weight or open the petcock to make sure there is no more pressure inside.
  11. Carefully remove the canner lid by lifting the far side first. Using this method allows any remaining steam to vent away from the user.
  12. Remove jars and place away from cold drafts on a rack or folded cloth where air can freely circulate.
Tip: Use care if you have a smooth top stove. It is not recommended to use this type of stove for canning, as the weight of the full canner can crack the stovetop. I have used this type of stove for years with never a problem, but just so you know.... This past year I purchased a "Kamp Kitchen" gas stove for canning. I keep it in my garage. What a difference! I will never use my smooth top again. The gas Kamp Kitchen was so much smoother. It brought it up to pressure faster, and kept it at the correct pressure really easily.

Click here to see how long to pressure can each vegetable.

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