Wednesday, July 6, 2011

First canning of the season

I'm pretty new to canning.  Last fall was the first time I'd ever done it.  My mom and I made applesauce from the apples on our tree at the farm and then later I made apple butter by myself, too.  One thing that I've been wanting to try for a LONG time is making pickles and this year I'm determined to.  Right now my cucumber plants are still pretty small, but cucumbers aren't the only thing you can pickle.




Because we have an abundance of radishes, I figured I'd try pickling them.  I improvised a recipe.  In Organic Gardening magazine the directions, given offhandedly, suggested putting radishes in jars and pouring in vinegar.  Ashley English's book on canning gave a simple brining recipe to use with a variety of vegetables.  I didn't have all of the spices on hand, so I used what I had.  It ended up being ground cumin, ground mustard, red pepper flakes and black peppercorns.  I read later that using ground spices can make the brine cloudy and that whole spices are best for pickling.  Next time.  For my brine I used 4 parts vinegar, 1 part water, 1/3 cup sugar and 2 heaping tablespoons sea salt and my ground spices.  I added the peppers to the prepared jars (sterlized and heated) and put a scallion into each jar before filling with my sliced radishes.







Next, I poured the brine, which had been simmering on the stove, into each pint jar leaving 1/2 inch space at the top.




Finally, the jars went into a hot water bath for 10 minutes.  I was so happy that all four jars sealed with no problems.




It looks like they've been canned with fruit punch!  I'm going to wait about six weeks before trying them, though I'm not sure how long you're really supposed to wait.  I'm excited to can some more things from the garden and I'm already planning for all the other pickles I want to make!

6 comments:

  1. Have you ever read Barbara Kingsolver's book about a year of self sufficiency? think you might like it.

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  2. I would love to try canning. I have never done it or seen it done before but I am sure it's worth the trouble. I have lots of tomato plants growing this year. And I would love my own homemade spaghetti sauce and salsa!
    Heirlooms are big this year for me. So I might need to be careful I get the right tomatoes for canning. If that is I get around to learning how to do it!

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  3. I hope they are delicious, but meanwhile they look very lovely in their jars!
    I'm sure you will be painting them before long! : )

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  4. Dearest sweet anne, i love the sounds of your wonderful vegie garden! Reminds me of my papa's vegie garden. It's so wonderful to have your own grown fruits and vegies. I would love to try canning too! These looks really yummie and thanks so much for sharing! Have a lovely merry happy weekend and love to you!

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  5. I'll be sure to share more of my canning with you, too. It's been so much fun. And, definitely, if you haven't read Barbara Kingsolver's book, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, I'd highly recommend it!

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  6. congrats on your canning! yes, it is fun and IMHO it doesn't matter if it gets cloudy, it's all about the taste, isn't it?? I'll be lucky to do any canning this year, I'm still doing the groundwork to put my ailing seedlings in some soil...

    xx

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