Introduction to CanningUSA.com
- Published on March 25 2011
- Written by David Blackburn (All Rights Reserved)
Canning adds a marvelous dimension to the repertoire of both beginning and experienced cooks. On the CanningUSA.com website, we hope to take some of the mystery out of this 200 year-old system, by showing you how to do four things; can for quality and freshness, can to save money, can for emergency preparedness and can to save time.
Home Canning for Quality and Freshness
There is a marked difference between a sauce made with summer, vine-ripened tomatoes and one made with winter tomatoes. Summer tomatoes produce a superior sauce that has depth of flavor, richness and color. My whole mood is instantly transformed when on a cold winter day, I open up a jar of homemade sauce, stew, soup or vegetable and discover that it tastes exactly like the day I made it the previous summer. Not only is it a source of satisfaction to know that I made it myself, but, in the middle of a snowstorm, I get flashbacks to those sunny days of summer!
This website will give you step-by-step instructions to successful home canning. By using your own canned foods, you will eliminate artificial coloring and preservatives from your diet, preserve the freshness, color and flavor of fresh fruits and vegetables, and provide your family with a wide variety of high quality, nutritious meals.
Home Canning to Save Money
We always take advantage of the sales which abound for fruits, vegetables, meats, duck and chicken during harvest seasons when they are cheap. For example, you might buy tomatoes at the peak of summer at the farmer’s market for about 50 cents a pound and in the winter for about $4.00. I can over 100 pounds of tomatoes each summer which enables me to make at least four different tomato sauces and several chili recipes. This may sound like a lot, but when divided by the number of weeks when tomatoes are at their most expensive, the cost-savings make it well worth the effort.
Granted there is an initial investment in jars, bands and caps to be reckoned with. On CanningUSA.com, however, there are some suggestions on how to improvise until you are able to evaluate the investment in equipment that fits within your budget. Also, we might suggest that you keep an eye out for jars and equipment on sale at thrift shops or flea markets!
Home Canning for Emergency Preparedness
Although the Federal Government provides emergency disaster relief, the bottom-line is emergency relief starts in the home. We will be adding pages within this website to help prepare for potential isolation due to natural disasters.
Home Canning to Save Time
My life has changed because of canning!
Although I started canning to provide my family and friends with fresh, tasty, well-balanced meals, an unexpected benefit was the amount of time I saved in the kitchen. I estimate that an investment of 8 canning days a year will yield approximately 150 dishes! Having fresh pestos, sauces, soups, chilis, stews, salsas and poached fruits on hand has changed my whole method of preparation. I no longer spend all day Saturday preparing for a dinner party because I usually have at least one of the courses on my pantry shelf!
On lazy days, I used to order out for pizza. Now I buy pizza dough which can be kept in the freezer and choose a fresh tomato sauce or pesto off the shelf. Or I might make a quick meal out of barbecued chicken, beef, pork or even lamb. Or why not just warm-up a nice chili and have it with tortillas? So, in addition to providing step-by-step canning techniques, included are some of my favorite recipes for your enjoyment. They range from simple, but hearty, family kitchen-table dinners to unique recipes for elegant dinner parties using your homemade canned foods. I’ve also added a couple of my specialties like Tarte Tatin and a perfect pound cake.
Canning has provided me with an opportunity to express my love for good food and to delight in sharing it with others. There is a sense of immense satisfaction in seeing rows of colorful jars in the pantry. But best of all, the smiles around the table express the satisfaction and appreciation of my family and friends. These canning recipes should provoke inspirations of your own and provide you with much pleasure as you share them with your family and friends. And don’t forget jars of canned goods make great gifts!