OK, so let’s get down to business. This is the first of a series of blogs on canning and preserving food. Summer is quickly turning to Fall and a cold, harsh winter is right around the corner. We gotta store up for good measure. Well, the circumstances might not be that dire these days, but canning is still a good way to have tasty food from your garden all year round.
Sweet corn can’t get much fresher than this!
So this post is a bit of a “lightning round” but let me catch you up. We picked the corn, shucked it, cut it from the cob, and now we are pre-heating the jars.
We set them gently in the pressure cooker
The what? The pressure cooker. This is the pressure cooker. The lid of this particular pot latches in place and there is a little steam vent pipe on top. Once there is steam coming out of the pipe, you cover it with a little cap to build pressure within the pot. The pressure allows the food to be cooked and the jars to seal at a temperature higher than the boiling point of water.
After the jars are done pressurizing, we let them cool about 24 hours. If the jar was successfully sealed, the lid will be bent inwards. If not it will still be able to pop up and down, just like on most sealed jars you buy from the grocery store. Now this corn is ready to eat at any time, though I feel like I should wait a few months just because I put in all the hard work to get it sealed so nicely in jars.
I am breaking tradition set in place by my previous book reviews today. I have not read the entirety of the Ball Blue Book. However, this is not out of the ordinary for owners of the Ball Blue Book because it is a cookbook of sorts. The Blue Book is put together by Ball, one of the largest producers of canning and preserving products for years running. Even if you know nothing about canning and preserving you have encountered Ball products.
This logo for the renowned folk band Huckleberry Caulfield and the Mason Jars is based upon the Ball mason jar. While I drank out of a Ball mason jar at many meals in my parent’s home, I have only recently come to use one for its initial practical purpose, canning!
In days not so long ago, folks who maintained some kind of garden would use canning and preserving techniques to help their harvest last all year long. Today when I want a can of corn, I can go to Kroger and buy one for 99 cents. But for those looking for a more local process or for those with some leftover produce from their garden canning is a great option! And if you are looking to can, you are gonna want a copy of the Ball Blue Book! It is full of recipes for preserving all kinds of vegetables as well as fruits, jams, jellies, soups, sauces, and almost anything you can imagine! If you are interested in looking through one, call up your grandmother. Chances are she owns a copy. I’ll be blogging some of my own adventures in canning over the summer!