Saturday, August 1, 2015

Be Prepared

I saw something similar to this in a facebook group and thought I would give you my take on the importance of questions and when they should be asked.  There are many facebook groups and blogs to help people learn to can their own foods.  Many times you will see people asking questions while in the middle of canning a recipe.  You will see questions like, I am in the middle of canning "This or That" how long do I process it for?  Or I'm canning "This or That", do I water bath or pressure can it.  These kinds of questions need to be asked long before you start the canning process.  Canning is not cooking, it is a science.  There are certain steps you should take to ensure the safety in what you are canning.  Follow these steps and if you have a question, ask it before you start.  You will be glad you did when you see how smooth things go when you are prepared.  

Find a tested recipe that you want to can.  The recipe should include what size jars to use, how long to process the jars, if it should be pressure canned or water bathed and approximately how many jars you will need as well as all ingredients needed.

Read your recipe.  Read it and keep your book open so you can refer back to it throughout the process.

Gather all your ingredients and canning equipment you will need.  All ingredients the recipe calls for, Jars, lids, rings, jar lifter, funnel, canner, towels, timer, ect...

Stay focused.  Once you start your recipe, stay focused on what you are doing so that you don't skip any steps.  An error in the process can be costly, not just by causing you to lose food if not done properly but it could jeopardize your health.

Don't rely on others to have your answer.  It's good to be a part of a group that can help you but don't rely on others to give you a quick answer.  The answer they give may not always be correct and if you have questions, the time to ask them is before you ever start preparing the recipe.  

When to go for help.  Read your recipe and get it clear in your own head what needs done.  If you are unsure of any step, go to your groups, ask what you need to know and make sure you fully understand the process you are about to do.  Only start your recipe once you are sure of all the steps you have to take from start to finish.  

If you follow these guidelines you will find that you have less questions and that by doing so you will become a skilled home preserver and may be the one giving advice instead of asking for it.  

I would like to say "Thank You" to Joyce Wilkins Mc Lamb for inspiring this post...