Teaching Good Things

Practical Skills for Real Life

Teaching Good Things - Practical Skills for Real Life

Is Canning Worth It?

Is canning worth it? It depends. Overall I’d say yes, but it does depend on your situation and season of life.

You have to consider the cost of supplies, the food, your time and the canned food quality.

When you start buying jars, lids, a canner (especially if you buy a pressure canner) and other supplies you may think it is not cost effective.

Here are some things to consider as you begin:

Supplies-

  • It does take an investment to begin with, start out slowly.
  • Watch at yards sales and thrift stores you can buy up a bunch of used jars.
  • Be sure there are no chips or nicks on the jar opening when buying them used.
  • You may have family members, especially older ones that are no longer canning that may love to hand down their jars to you.
  • If you are buying a pressure canner used be sure to have it tested before using it. Usually your local Cooperative Extension can help you with that.
  • Once your supplies are bought they will last you for years and years…and years!

The Food-

  • If you grow your own of course that is the most economical way, even if you only grow and can your tomatoes.
  • Consider going in together with another family and planting a garden together sharing expenses, WORK and produce.
  • You may be able to buy from local farmers markets. Buy only when food is at it’s peak season, that is when it is cheapest.
  • If you live in a rural area you may have friends or family that have surplus that they would love to give away so it does not go to waste. Take what you can and can or freeze  it.

Your Time-

  • Your time is the most valuable thing yow have. You may have to sacrifice some activities to get the canning done. It all boils down to making time for what is most important to you.
  • Set a side a day and do a bunch of canning at once, or do a little each week.
  • Enlist help, older children, a spouse, a friend, a grandmother. It is great bonding time!
  • Again, start out slow tackling one or two items/recipes each year.

The Food Quality-

  • When you can you know what is in it.
  • YOU control the preservatives and the quality of food going onto it.
  • You know how long it has been on the shelf.
  • Canning or freezing your food is almost always more healthy than buying off the store shelf.

 And there is the pure satisfaction of eating the fruit of your own hands. :)

 

Planning for the Pantry

 

Here is a great site to help you find farms in your area that will let you pick:

Pick Your Own

Another great site:

Farm Gal

Products we love:

Presto 23 Quart Pressure Cooker

Using a pressure cooker to can produce sure does cut processing time way down!

Hot water canner, perfect for processing tomatoes or if you are cautious about using a pressure cooker.

All of these gadgets make canning efficient!

I’d much rather use wide mouth jars rather than regular mouth jars,

especially for tomatoes and soup.

Grandma Brodock’s Sweet Pepper Relish and how to can it.

Canning Salsa

From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge – Canning

 

We put up green beans a couple weeks ago.


now we’re working on sweet corn…


Oh, how I hate the mess…

 

 but I sure do love the results!


We’ve also made pickles…


both dill and bread and butter.


20 -30 jars at a time will make this winter easier on the pocketbook!

Be sure to check out the From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge over at She Considers,

and link up about your harvest…or seeds…or weeds!

plan your pantry

Here is my Planning for the Pantry canning list.

Basic Canning Supplies

From Seeds to Harvest – Look what’s popped up!

Emma brought in this beautiful sunflower that grew up all by itself in the middle of our tomatoes! Wonder how in the world that got there? A bird?

Then in two of my flower containers tomato plants have come up…but my flowers died. What’s that all about? Well, the tomato plant probably came up because I used soil from our compost pile. :)  Not sure why the flowers died, a lot of the flowers that I planted from plants bought at Wal Mart didn’t make it.

We’re picking blueberries off our two bushes just about everyday…it’s wonderful!

Today I made two loaves of banana blueberry bread made with half whole wheat and honey.

 We ate it warm from the oven after supper, at the risk of bragging, I must say, it was WONDERFUL!

I’ll let Jeff take the other loaf with him to work tomorrow to share with his crew…

if there is any left by then!

The key to a good banana bread is to use REALLY ripe bananas,

this is when they are at their sweetest point.

 

Don’t forget to link up over at the From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge!

From Seeds to Harvest – Guess what we’re doing today…

 

Yep! Canning beans!!! A friend of ours called and asked us if we would come pick some beans because they have more than they can keep up with, so at twilight last night our family was out there picking. It was actually kind-of fun, the temperatures and humidity had dropped and with 4 of us picking and talking the time flew! We picked all of this in less than 30 minutes! Now that is what memories are made of!!!

We’re also getting about a 1/2 gallon to a gallon of blueberries off our 2 bushes right now!

Both Olivia and Emma have been working on re-doing our front flower beds. They have been so neglected this year. There has got to be an easier way of keeping up with things; concrete? I can paint flowers on rocks!

And poor Olivia! She has poison ivy on her eye lid! She has a few other spots, but her eye lid is awful and swollen.

Be sure to link up over at the From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge!

 

From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge

 

 

We are in a drought here, which means every morning Jeff waters the garden and Olivia tends to her herbs.

We NEED rain, like a whole week of rain!

We’ve gotten some yellow squash from our garden and some wonderful lettuce. There have also been a couple blueberries ripe…can’t wait for those wonderful gems to ripen!

I saw this on line the other day…LOVVVVVE IT!

I think I’m going to have to try to copy it!

Instructions are HERE!

 

Be sure to get in on the Gardening Challenge over at She Considers.

There is a sweeeeeet giveaway too!

From Seeds to Harvest Giveaway!

Don’t forget to check out today’s From Seeds to Harvest Gardening Challenge.

There is a sweeeeeeeeet giveaway involved!

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