With so many moms, home-school families and gardeners in our Peace family, we thought it’d be fun to find some tips for making pickles and jams this summer!
Flora Williams with the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension office says that they will offer several classes throughout the summer. To find a link to classes that they offer, CLICK HERE, or copy and paste this website into your browser: https://brazos.agrilife.org/events/ .
Meanwhile, here are ten tips from Flora to help you!
1. Start with a clean preparation area and the freshest foods possible. Check jars for nicks and cracks. Make sure your equipment is clean and in good working order.
2. Always use a pressure canner when canning low-acid foods. This includes most vegetables (except many tomato products), seafood, poultry, and meat.
3. If using a pressure canner with a dial gauge, have it tested each year. In fact, have your pressure canner checked to make sure that gaskets (if present) are in good shape and that vents, safety valves and edges of the lid are clean.
4. Always use tested recipes that have up-to-date, researched processing (canning) times. Sources of tested recipes include the National Center for Home Food Preservation and companies that produce home canning supplies. Recipes from cookbooks, personal internet sites or older Extension publications should not be used.
5. Do not alter ingredients in tested recipes. Changing the ingredients in a tested recipe can make that recipe unsafe for home food preservation.
6. When filling jars, always use the correct headspace. Headspace is the space in the jar that is between the lid and the top of the food or liquid. Having too little or too much headspace can affect how the lid seals and the quality of the final product.
7. After jars have been processed (canned), check the lids within 12 to 24 hours to make sure they are sealed. Food from jars that did not seal should be frozen or refrigerated and eaten in a couple of days. You may also reprocess (re-can) it within 24 hours.
8. Label lids with the name of the food, date the food was canned, and batch number (if you canned more than once that day). That way, if you see signs of spoilage, you can identify the batch number and pay special attention to those jars.
9. Store canned foods in a dark, cool, and dry, place. If the food is stored in a humid place, the moisture can cause the lids to rust, leading to spoilage. Periodically check the jars for signs of spoilage.
10. For best quality, use home-canned foods within one year.
For additional information:
Click below to listen to Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Office’s Flora Williams chat with Peace 107’s Brian and Kat: