Thank you to everyone who made it out to my pressure canning workshop today at the Compost Education Centre!
While my pressure canner has a dial to tell us what the pressure is inside the canner, we also used a 3-piece weight at the 10 lb setting, instead of the default 15 lb weight that came with the canner. This alternate weight “rocks” when the pressure inside the canner is at 10 lbs, giving us an audible cue that all is right! I bought this 3-piece weight separately from my pressure canner.
My favourite pressure canning resources are the following:
- National Centre for Home Food Preservation
- Healthy Canning
- Canning Facebook group
- The Joy of Cooking
- The Ball Complete Book of Home Preservin
All of these resources focus on safety, science, and step by step instructions.
Pressure canning is fun because you can use this technique to can almost anything, including low acid foods such as beans, meat, and fish!
However, there are few rules that must be followed:
- No grains, pastas, or starches (including rice and flour)
- No dairy (including butter)
- No purees (unless using a TESTED recipe from a reputable source)
- For soups/meats: Fill jars only 2⁄3 full with solids, using slotted spoon; then top with liquid to required headspace (usually 1”)
STEPS FOR SAFE & EFFICIENT PRESSURE CANNING
- Prepare cooking space (tidy, wipe down with cleaning solution, wash & organize tools)
- Prepare food (wash, chop, measure)
- Prepare jars, lids and rings (wash)
- Cook your food if required
- Fill jars to recommended headspace
- Wipe jar rims and apply lids, and secure with rings (fingertip tight)
- Fill pressure canner with water according to manufacturer’s instructions
- Place jars in canner on rack
- Place lid on canner
- Turn on heat and vent canner for 10 minutes
- Place pressure regulator weight on vent pipe
- Once desired pressure (usually 10lbs at sea level) is reached, begin timing, and adjust heat as needed for processing time specified in recipe (Note: If the pressure drops below the required pressure, you MUST restart the processing time)
- Remove pot from heat and let pressure drop
- Once pressure is at zero, remove weight from vent pipe
- Let sit for 5 minutes, then open lid, tilting it away from you
- Remove jars from water onto a rack or towel and let cool completely
- Remove rings from jars, and test seals by lifting jars from edges of lids (if lid comes off, refrigerate and eat contents soon, or freeze, or re-process)
- Wipe sealed jars and lids with warm wet cloth, label with date and contents
- Store in a cool, dark place until ready to enjoy
I bought my pressure canner on sale at Capital Iron. You can also find them at Canadian Tire. If you only need a pressure canner occasionally, you can sign one out from the Victoria Tool Library, a fantastic local resource that also lends out other food preservation tools such as dehydrators.
My apologies for the text-heavy post! I will come back and add photos when I can.
If you have questions, please email me: Lindsay at jarstar dot ca