Have You Ever Considered Canning?


canned food pictureThe recent events in Ferguson, MO have accentuated how fragile our society really is.  There are unlimited numbers of unexpected events that can change our lives in an instant.

To prepare for any such problem, having our houses in order should be a priority.  Staying indoors while things settle down is possible with food storage.

There are not many people who are able to go out and buy a month’s worth of food. There are ways to achieve the goal on a budget.  Canning is a great way to preserve food purchased on sale. It is also a way to lock in lower prices.  In the four years I have been canning, I have seen large price increases in meat, butter and more.  You might think you do not want to can or don’t have a clue how to can.  Canning is not difficult to learn and will save large sums of money.  It also provides food that is not full of chemicals or preservatives and it will last a long time, almost indefinitely when stored in a cool, dry and dark environment.

I was afraid of a pressure canner and was sure I would have an explosion. (That would be my luck, lol). I had water bath canned (no pressure gauges involved) tomatoes and that was about it.  My sister gave me one lesson and I was off and running.  I think I have canned more in the last four years than she has in her life.  It really is easy.

I found a book by Jackie Clay, “Growing and Canning Your Own Food”, to be a source I go to over and over.  This book gives information in non-technical terms about canning just about anything.  If you are going to purchase any book, this would be the one I would recommend.  (I do not have any connection to this book.)

You will need to purchase a few items:  A pressure canner, not a pressure cooker, canning jars – they come with lids and rings, a jar lifer and a canning funnel (it has a wide mouth that fits in the jars), a lid wand, plastic spatula (these can be purchased as a kit) and some white vinegar.  You don’t have to buy a real expensive pressure canner.  I have been using a Presto 01781 23 quart pressure canner that I got for about $80 on Amazon or you can just watch for sales.  Jars are very fairly priced at Ace Hardware and Wal-Mart.  Ace.com runs sales on their jars making them the first place I look and they ship free to a store near you.

Once you have your supplies, decide what you want to can.  I have canned meat, vegetables, fruit, and butter and believe it or not, water.  For the water, I use the ½ gallon jars.  The price on-line for canned water is 66 oz. for $15.  Pressure canned water in ½ gallon jars will cost you $4 a gallon plus the amount of time it takes to process.  I put my tap water through my Berkey filter (or any quality filter) and use that water in my jars.  Now, I call this a savings.  The ½ gallon jars should not be used for any other pressure canning projects because anything solid inside would not be able to heat through enough to kill any bacteria or toxin spores.  You might want to think about canning some water for your family.  Without clean water, we do not have life.  We can live without food longer than we can live without water.  I also save the box that the jars come in.  I cut the plastic off the box at the point where the cardboard box ends.  The gives a little protection from water ruining the box if it is around.

 

If you would like to learn how to can, I enjoy watching:

https://www.youtube.com/user/katzcradul/videos

http://www.preparednesspro.com

 

Hope you enjoy,

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