Summer in a Jar
You just need to want to can! So, you want to can?!
The fine people at Mountain Feed, a wonderful small homesteading company (and Cold Antler Sponsor, for which I thank them!) sent me the Big Daddy of all beginner canning sets. They sent me the Ball Fresh Preserving Canning Kit and some jars! I was so thrilled! I have a canner but it has been used more for soaking chickens for de-feathering during butchering and I was pretty happy to have a new one just for preserving. And seeing that new canner and all the shiny new gear really is what inspired me to get out there and start picking those berries. It didn't take long to collect enough to start getting ready to make jam. I'm including their short intro video with this post as well because it really is a well shot and easy to understand overview of fresh preserving high acid goodies like jams, jellies, pickles and pasta sauce. Enjoy it!
Mountain Feed Learn'Ems: Water Bath Canning from Mountain Feed & Farm Supply on Vimeo.
So I spent a little time this week canning up some of this summer's harvest. I put up a large supply of berry jam and water bath canned it and I turned those three big cucumbers you saw in the produced basket a few days ago into fridge pickles. I have been enjoying both already! Since one of the can's lids didn't seal that jam went straight into the fridge. I spread some over a slice of toast and wondered why I ever bought jam before in my life? The berries on this farm are ripe and gorgeous, and when turned into a hot, red, stew over the stovetop with some added strawberry goodness it was such a delight. My little house was filled with such amazing smells
Oh? What's a fridge pickle? Well, thank you for asking. It's the world's easiest pickle recipe when you have just enough cucs to warrant five minutes of work, I highly recommend it. And if this post has you a little excited about putting up food and you are nervous about being a new canner - this is a grand way to start. Adjust the technique as you see fit (there are also many recipes online if you search for fridge pickles). As a general rule the more sweet - the more sugar, and the more vinegar - the more tart. I like a nice balance and they don't last long in my fridge. Most of these are now gone, and only the picture delayed their inevitable demise!
How to Make Easy Fridge Pickles.
1. Cut up your Cucumbers into spears or slices.
2. Place in large bowl or glass baking dish.
3. Cover all the pickles with sugar, plain sugar.
4. Pour canning vinegar over the sweet slices.
5. Add pickling spices to taste (comes in spice jar at your grocer).
6. Put in fridge for a few hours to get to know itself better.
7. Place in jar and enjoy right out of fridge!
(Good for a week or so, then get soggy like)
So What are YOU putting up where you live?