We all know that fruits and vegetables can be canned, but did you know you can also can your favorite homemade soups, stews, and chili? I have an awesome marinara recipe and can’t wait to can it when the weather gets a little cooler. I love the fact that I will know exactly what is in the recipe, and that it won’t be full of sugars.
If you want to start canning your own main dish recipes, start by making a list of the ingredients you’ll need. Then, look for them on sale. If this process ends up costing an arm and a leg, that Ragu, with all its’ preservatives and sugar, will start looking pretty good at $2 a jar! On the topic of keeping this cheap, look for canning jars at yard sales. You can even ask for them on Freecycle.
The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving is considered to be The Bible of home canning. It offers all types of recipes, but more importantly takes the beginning canner step by step through the process. Most importantly, following the directions will help insure your food is safe from deadly bacteria. As my friend, Barbara , said, “In canning, there are no shortcuts.”
One tip for your canning. Determine how much of the main dish you ordinarily use for a meal, and then look for canning jars that contain about that much. I hate it when I use half a jar of spaghetti sauce on a pizza, and then the other half collects mold in my refrigerator.
Finally, I found a great article online, “Canning Made Easy.” If you’re a beginner, it’s a good introduction.
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