Inspired by the book I was reading, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, I decided that it would be fun to give canning a go. I didn’t know how to can or how to pickle… but I was determined to figure it out.
Abby and I went to the farmer’s market to pick out a bunch of fresh veg from local farms. We got some cucumbers and peppers for pickling… and we got some tomatoes, onions, peppers, and cilantro for salsa. We bought some canning supplies from Fleet Farm (mainly a huge stock pot and jars) and were good to go.
It seems like pickyourown.org has the internet market on canning tomatoes or how to pickle. So, I followed their directions for the salsa…
It was pretty straight forward. Cook tomatoes, onion, peppers, and cilantro. Add vinegar or lemon juice to raise the acidity. Then can the heck out of it!
I used a dill pickle packet for the cucumbers and green beans. Again it was much more straight forward than the thought. Add vinegar and heat.
The actual jarring is a cakewalk, just time-consuming. Basically sterilize the jars, fill them with all the things, cap ’em and put ’em back in the boiling bath for a while. There are a few temperature things to be aware of, but that is on all the recipes.
The really neat thing about the entire process is that I kept all my vegetable scraps and made a veg broth. I poured the broth into an ice-cube tray and now I have easy broth cubes. Great for Pot Pies and the like! I felt very productive and proud of myself after the jars were full.
My next endeavor… Homemade cheese!