Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Canning - The Comeback Kid!

Glass jar maker, Ball Corporation and Canning Across America have teamed up to create National Can It Forward Day.  On August 13th, gather your friends and family together to continue the art of “putting up” food.

Canning is something your mother or grandmother probably did.  During the recent economic downturn, canning was rediscovered.  Take a stroll down the seasonal isle of most grocery stores, and you will find a wide array of canning supplies. 

Our grandparents canned to preserve the harvest.  They wanted to make sure there was enough food to get through winter.  We can now purchase most foods all year round.   Jams, jellies and pickles can also be purchased.  We no longer need to preserve food.   Canning is hard work.  You need to get out special equipment, wash and sanitize the jars.  It is messy work.  This is not going to be a 30 minute project.  So why would anyone want to can? 

As most do now, I searched on Wikipedia to see why people were canning.  I found no real answers.  So I decided to give you my reasons for canning.  I enjoy “all things food”.  I think I make a better product than major food companies.  I like to believe that cooking and canning give me better control over my diet. 

Whatever the reason for canning, it is on the rise.  I am not the only person slaving over jars, hot water baths, jams, jellies, and pickles.  Here are a few resources to help you get started with canning.

National Center for Home Food Preservation – http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/
Ball Corporation – http://www.freshpreserving.com/home.aspx
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension –  http://food.unl.edu/web/preservation/home

So Easy to Preserve – University of Georgia – Cooperative Extension
The Ball Blue Book: Guide to Preserving – The Ball Corporation

Whatever recipe you use, choose a resource that has been approved by the US Department of Agriculture.  Safety is a major concern with canned products.

Good luck! And let us know about your canning projects.

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