Yesterday I made Thai coconut soup for dinner.. We had a lot left over but I couldn't find a container to put it in and Clay said "why don't you use your Mason jars?"..
I love Mason jars.. I use them for everything.. Except canning..
I keep them in the cabinet full of dry goods (pasta, rice, beans) I keep my tea in them (loose and bags) I keep my make up brushes, tooth brushes, flowers..
Whatever can fit in a Mason jar goes in a Mason jar..
But I don't know how to actually can in a Mason jar..
Well, I don't know how to can in any jar.. I really want to know how to can.. Really..
I always thought canning was a difficult process full of never ending steps and pressure cookers..
I'm afraid of pressure cookers..
My mother-in-law uses one and she never has a problem with it.. In fact, everyone in New Mexico (where she lives) uses a pressure cooker all the time without incident.. They toss in some beans, some water, slap the lid on and *poof* perfectly cooked beans..
She uses it to make potatoes, rice, chicken and dumplings, whatever..
Everything comes out perfectly every time.
When I use a pressure cooker; water spits out the sides, or the lid flies off and hits the ceiling, or everything burns to the bottom of the pan..
I have horrible experiences with pressure cookers..
I have always wanted to learn to can my own stuff, but the idea of using a pressure cooker is just far too intimidating for me.. But canning would make certain dinners easier..
Like spaghetti.. My family loves my spaghetti.. Even Sky who hates tomatoes.. But making my spaghetti sauce is an all day thing.. I use fresh tomatoes that have to be peeled cored and seeded which is a chore in itself, garlic and onions that need to be peeled, chopped, & sauteed, and a bunch of herbs that have to be fresh, and then it has to be cooked and tweaked for several hours.. It's a looong process..
It's worth it though, the sauce is amazing! But when you know it's going to take at least 8 hours, you don't make it very often.. However, if I could can it, we could have it more often.. I would still have to cook the sausage and add it to the sauce (you have to use a pressure cooker when canning anything with meat) but if I could just add it to a jar of sauce that only needed to be heated up? No problemo..
I found a recipe for strawberry jam too..
I don't normally like strawberries (or fruit for that matter) but I do like homemade strawberry jam.. The recipe I found doesn't call for pectin and it looks easy enough..
I think I'll try canning the jam first and see how well I do before I move on to spaghetti sauce..
Now I just need to convince Clay to buy me a canning kit..
Wish me luck!
*and if you know how to can, come over and help me!*
Clay said if I am going to learn to can, I might as well learn the right way..
It looks like I'll be learning to use a pressure cooker..
Pray for me..