Monday, August 22, 2011

Canning Week 2011: Preparations

It's finally here.... Canning Week 2011!!!!
I am super excited to be "putting up" with Jen From Mess Hall to Bistro all week as we daily blog recipes and how to guides on canning your own fruits and vegetables.  It is our hope that if you are new to canning you learn a little bit more about the process and are encouraged enough to try it on your own.  Or, if you are an old pro at canning you find some inspiration for some new ideas and help share your knowledge with others.  This years Canning Week is going to be a blast!!!!  Be sure to check in each day for more recipes, more prizes and more ways to interact with other canners.  Each day you can check out the canning conversations we have going on in our facebook group "from garden plOTT to kitchen pOTT."  And if you are on Pinterest check out our Canning Board.  Also you can tweet along with us on twitter using #canningweek2011.  We will be hosting a linky party all week long, so feel free to link up recipes where you have canned something.  In conjunction with the Linky Party we are honored to have Kate from The Hip Girls Guide to Homemaking serve as our guest judge.  At the end of the week she will select the best blog post based on writing, pictures, recipe and information on how to can and award the winner a copy of her new book; The Hip Girls Guide To Homemaking. Oh but wait..... there's more..... We will also be having lots of canning related give-a-ways you will want to be sure and sign up for each day. So without further ado.....  LETS GET THIS PARTY STARTED!!!!!!!!!!!!! At the start of each canning season it's always a good idea to inspect your equipment and take inventory of your jars and rings. Knowing how many jars you have and ensuring that there are no cracks on chips out of them helps with planning and will save you some headaches down the road.  Rings should also be inspected for cleanliness, dents and rust. Always check the vent pipe before use.  Hold cover up to the light and look through vent pipe to be certain it's clear.  If the vent pipe is blocked, excess pressure cannot be released through it and pressure may build to unsafe levels.  You can clean the vent pipe with a small brush or pipe cleaner.
Next check the Pressure Gauge lock to be sure it moves freely before use. 
Check the overpressure plug and sealing ring for cracks or deformations.  It's also good to gauge how worn it has become, if you start to see that it's getting hard or pitted it's probably best to replace these. Also when storing your canner always invert the cover on the canner body.  (If it's stored with the lid locked it could stretch out the sealing ring.)
Always use a canning rack as jars may break if set directly on the bottom of the canner. Your local county extension agent should be able to check/calibrate your pressure canner to ensure it's working properly. Lastly, make sure your canner is thoroughly cleaned. While you're here don't forget to sign up for the give-a-way as we are pleased to announce that Red Hill General Store is giving away one of their Presto 7 Function Canning Kits to one of our lucky readers. Just think how much help this will be in your kitchen!?!? Sign up below and Big Thanks to Red Hill General Store for being a Sponsor this week!!!!!!
This post was linked to: Monday Mingle Blog Hop, Meet Me Monday, Monday Mingle,Follow Us Monday Morning Monday Hop Along with Me, Monday Monkey Hop,


Michelle said...

Hey there! Following from a Monday hop. Your "canning" caught my eye. I just canned for the first time last week, using a water bath canner.
Heartfelt Balance Handmade Life

Joanne Kennedy said...

I'm excited about this week too! Thanks for hosting.

Mo 'Betta said...

This is good info as I just got a canner from my Grandmother's attic - who knows how old it is! I need to get it checked out...I've been scared to use it!

Sarah said...

I am so excited to be following along this week!! I am new to canning and am looking forward to all the tips and recipes to help me get started!

Sarah from The House That Ag Built

~Dawn~ said...

I won and I am super excited! I am new to canning and will be the first to admit, "I have alot to learn". What a Blessing this kit will be! Thank you!

Thank you ladies and sponsors for all your time,advice and tutorials. You are a great help! Again, thank you for the canning kit!

Many Blessings!