Thursday, August 23, 2012

It's been a few weeks...

I've been away, but before leaving I canned several pints of Roma tomatoes. I was afraid of botulism and didn't even know what I would do with canned whole tomatoes, but once we returned I made use of all of them as the sauce for various homemade pizzas. Because of the natural acidity of tomatoes (and I added lemon juice according to a recipe), they could be canned in a water bath rather than a pressure cooker. And no one died from eating them! But I now own a pressure canner and hope to put it to good use (one night when Morgan's home to help).

While I was away I asked a family friend to help herself to anything in the garden. I wasn't sure who was doing who the favor, honestly. I was thankful she stopped by, watered, and helped herself so nothing rotted and she enjoyed the abundance of cherry tomatoes and whatever else she found. A perfect arrangement if you know someone who likes fresh veggies (who doesn't like fresh veggies?). She even made great use of our resident rosemary plant - she dried a bunch in her dehydrator and gave me a container filled with fresh dried rosemary! What a great gift idea!

When I returned I picked several banana peppers and pickled some in jars. It didn't need to be water bathed or pressure canned because it's in a vinegar solution (apparently). Then I had an abundance of green beans (2 weeks in a row) from my CSA so I made canned dilly beans! Yay! The dilly beans I processed in a water bath for 5 minutes according to the recipe. It's also in a vinegar solution, so hopefully won't have any botulism risks. It's important to use legitimate recipes and not get creative. This is science, not art!

Below is a picture of the dilly beans in the canner and also a picture of the banana peppers. It's a beautiful thing this canning!

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