Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I can "CAN"

Tis' the season to Can, Jar, and Pickle.  Prepping those ideas for the upcoming holiday season.  Making creative ideas time and time again.  A few days ago I saw someone in need of some ideas for canning.  Now, let me state first and foremost, I don't can.  My wife does.  She has been doing it since we bought this home 7 years ago.  Our garden always seem to produce more than we can consume. When we moved into this home the root cellar had a shelf of Canned items from the previous long term owner.  So, keeping with the homes tradition my wife Amy Can's.  My part in the Canning is usually ideas for flavor, practicality, and eye appeal (if they are going to be gifted).  My Mother had a vast array of recipes for canning and making them useful for meals during the year.  The 2 recipes I'm about to share are the ones I sent this individual  for gifting there bounty during the Holidays.  I would like to add that my personal favorite is the "Pickled Onion" for burgers and Salads

Cliff Note of History
I do think that canning has never faded from the American home.  It is a time honored tradition that has been part of my life since I can remember.  From what I read on Wikipedia its appearance in America was around 1812 in New York were Robert Ayars established the first American canning factory to can Oysters.  I'm thinking people were doing it in the US prior to that but that gives a reference point.

Equipment commonly used:

 these are wonderfully sweet and spicy. Excellent on burgers and sandwiches.

4 quarts of tiny, peeled onions (if these are not available to you regular sweet onions cut into slices and separated into rings will work)
1 cup salt
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup mustard seed
2 ½ tablespoons prepared horseradish
2 quarts distilled vinegar
7 bay leaves
7 small hot peppers

Sprinkle the onions with salt, then add cold water to cover. Let stand 12 to 18 hours in a cool place. Drain; rinse and then drain again thoroughly. Combine the sugar, mustard seed, horseradish and vinegar in a small saucepan, simmer this for 15 minutes. Pack your rinsed onions into hot jars, leaving 1/4 inch, add 1 hot pepper and 1 bay leaf to each jar. Reheat the brine to boiling and pour over the onions in the jars, leaving the 1/4 inch. Cap. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. This will make 7 pints of pickled onions.

 don’t care for Brussels sprouts? Try this idea to make them into dill pickles.

2 pounds Brussels sprouts (leave whole)
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 cloves garlic 4 heads of dill
3 tablespoons salt
2 ½ cups water
2 ½ cups vinegar

Cook the Brussels sprouts in a small amount of water, until just tender. Combine the water, vinegar, salt, pepper and the dill in a small saucepan and boil for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile pack the Brussels sprouts into hot jars. Pour the vinegar mixture over the Brussels sprouts, leaving 1/4 inch. Add a clove of garlic and another small head of dill to each of the jars. Seal and process for 15 minutes in a boiling water bath. This will make 4 pints of Dilled Brussels sprouts.

If making dilled green beans; use 2 pounds of trimmed green beans (leave the beans whole, just remove the ends) in place of the Brussels Sprouts. And process for 10 minutes.


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