I ran over to Walmart Monday morning to get some CWF (Clear Wood Finish) to apply to the back deck to help protect it from our intense sun. (SM had borrowed our neighbors power washer this weekend and had cleaned the deck for me already.)
As I was buzzing through the aisles I saw a stack of boxes on the end of an aisle with a sign that said Canning Jars $7 a dozen - You pick the size. I stopped dead in my tracks and thought. "Why not?"
Back in the day...ages ago it seems, my parents canned. I remember helping can tomatoes and peaches and pears. I don't think we ever made jelly. I'm pretty sure someone in the house made a killer bread and butter pickle. Everything was canned using a water bath. A few years later we got a huge upright frost free freezer and that was the end of canning at our house.
I've mentioned before that food texture is a "To each their own kinda thing."
I'm not shy about freezing foods but I don't care for the texture of frozen peaches and pears. Applesauce is good either way and I truly can't image preserving tomatoes any other way than in a jar.
So I loaded 3 quart boxes into my cart, spun over and picked up a water bath canner, (lifter "thingy", funnel and magnet included) and eyeballed the food processors.
SM has wanted to get me a food processor for awhile. I just think that they're a pain in the butt. Maybe I'd think differently if I had one but that's a mighty expensive "If".
What I think I'd like is a Food Mill. It's seems right up my alley but again I've no experience with a food mill either. It just seems "right" to me.
I've also read on a blog (somewhere) about using a Food Steamer/Juicer to help condense the water out of tomatoes for a denser sauce.
I've read blogs on slow oven roasting and crock-pot sauces too.
So I'd like to throw this out there. Canning is on my "2011 To Do List". I'm going to start simple this year. Water Bath only. Maybe next year I'll venture into pressure canning land.
What utensils, tips, tricks would you teach a newbie like me?
Peaches, pears, and tomatoes (maybe applesauce, not sure) That's it. That's all. Everything else goes in the freezer.