Last year around the fourth of July I asked my Mom to show me how to "can" stuff. I had watched my Aunt back in Michigan can veggies in the summer one year when we were visiting. It looked really scary with a big pressure cooker and steaming hot jars and tools I had never seen in any kitchen that I had been in. Despite my initial impressions I still wanted to do it. I had seen some Paula Deen recipes and really want to try some savory sauces and relishes, like chutney and this great tomato jam from an old cookbook I picked up at (yes you guessed !) an estate sale.
Mom said - "You can do it, it's easy"! Yes, I had read lots of recipes and it seemed easy enough for the types of things that I wanted to can, but I still wanted her motherly guidance nearby in case I had any questions right in the middle of the process! What if I messed up? What if the big pot of long cooked yummy ingredients didn't get to the gel stage they needed to be in? So she came over and it WAS easy. We made green pepper relish (my brother-in-laws recipe!), Paula's green tomato chutney and a lovely tomato onion jam just like Harry and David's.
Everything came out beautiful and I received new found confidence in myself to can, can away! I always liked an old saying - probably from the 40's - "We eat what we can, and what we can't - we can." - Isn't that great! Now if only I could get my garden to produce more than I can eat, but that's another story.
Well now it's a whole year later and I haven't canned another jar! Soooooo because it's strawberry season I decided that it was time to begin my next adventure in canning. It actually started with a purchase several weeks ago from the big Goodwill store. ( I know! - where else does she shop you say!) I had found a box of these really unique canning jars unlike any I had seen before.
So off to the the Farmers Market I went to pick up 4 baskets of local strawberries.