The Jam and Jelly Lady

  (Lebanon, Ohio)
Yes You Can!
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Tips for Beginning Canners

Had a wonderful time Sat. teaching canning to a super groups of cooks from the Cincy area!  Thanks so much to Carol (the effervescent learner), Peggy (the inquisitive educator), Judy (Carol's generous and sweet friend), and Jennifer (the determined, gentle mother).  You women MADE the class so much better with your undying curiosity and genuine humor!  I truly loved working with you and "handing down" my knowledge to folks I know will treasure and share it!

Here's a tip that we talked a lot about in Saturday's class.  When looking at the mounds of tomatoes your garden produces this summer, don't get the idea of canning them all into salsa (USA's favorite condiment) without using a tested recipe.  I know, I know!  We all have a fresh salsa recipe that all our friends clamor for at cookouts and parties.  Yeah, a quart of it would make an unforgettable Christmas present!  But a fresh salsa recipe is not necessarily a canning recipe!  Safely canned salsa always contains vinegar to heighten the pH level.  Salsa without added vinegar or another acid source is not acidic enough.  Don't endanger your family and friends!  There are plenty of TESTED salsa recipes that you will really enjoy, i.e., The Ball Blue Book, etc.

No more class dates are firm at this point, but I'm planning one more all-day Saturday beginner's class in mid-May - before Sat. farmer's markets start up!  After that, the 6-hour Beginner's Class will be taught mid-week, either all-day or 2 week nights.  

Here are the Master's Class topics I have in mind for this summer:  1) Relishes  2) Curds  3) Pickling Fruit (watermelon rinds, pears, etc.)  4) Chutneys  5) Refresher Canning Course  6) Herbal Vinegars.  If any of these sound interesting or if you have any other topics in mind, please comment here or on our Facebook page (The Jam and Jelly Lady).  

Don't forget that I can't teach during the months of August, September, and December.  The cannery is too busy at those times catching up on the harvest and fulfilling gift orders.  But you can still make an appointment to purchase canning equipment at any time.

Thanks, again, ladies!   Hugs to you all! 

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Sonya, I had such a wonderful time at your canning class, and I look forward to taking more! We ate the glazed carrots for dinner Saturday night. I could not wait to try them. Both my husband and daughter liked them! So I will need to make sure I plant plenty of carrots in our garden. I opened the strawberry jam Sunday morning for breakfast. It is soooo yummy! Plus I feel so good that it is fresh!! No more store bought jam for me!! I'm very excited to start using my new skills! Thanks again for a wonderful day of friendship, food, and FUN!

Posted by Jennifer on April 13, 2010 at 08:59 AM EDT #

Jennifer - I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I know, it's hard after canning something new and pretty and leave it in the jar for a while. You want to taste it! I'm so glad your daughter didn't mind julienne instead of medallion cut carrots. Next thing you know, she'll be labeling jars for you, packing them into boxes, and helping you pick berries. Moments like those are priceless between a mother and daughter. I'm almost 50 and I still have wonderful memories of strawberry picking every June just as school recessed! Thanks for your comment!

Posted by Sonya - The Jam and Jelly Lady on April 13, 2010 at 03:33 PM EDT #

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