How To Can Fruits and Vegetables

How To Can Fruits and Vegetables


[MUSIC PLAYING] – Welcome back to
Southwest Yard and Garden. I’m Curtis Smith. It’s that time of the year
where we’re beginning to think, I’ve got a lot of vegetables. I need to do
something with them. Frost will be coming
in a few weeks, and our gardens are
still producing. What do I do? Well, we can share
some of the food with those
organizations that share the food with the
homeless, or we can can. A few weeks ago, Patricia Aaron
with the Bernalillo County Extension Office, told us about
drying fruits and vegetables, freezing fruits and
vegetables, now, we need to talk about canning. So, Patricia, we’re back. We’d like to know what to do
with all of our vegetables and fruits, now that we need to
do something with him quickly before the freeze. – All right, Curtis, there
are two ways to process foods to make them safe. Fruits, jams and jellies,
pickles, and tomatoes are processed in the
water bath canner. All vegetables must be
processed in a pressure canner, in order for them
to be food safe. Let’s talk a little
bit about jars. – I see you get a
lot of jars here. – Yes. – Are these all
good for canning? – No, they’re not. Actually there’s only one. You want a regulation
canning jar, and those are ones that
they are a tempered glass, and they’re meant to
be used and re-used. You want a good
ring, not the ones that are rusty, like this would
be one you didn’t want to use. And the jars– things
like this mayonnaise jars, this mayonnaise jar should
never be used, because there’s a chance of it breaking. These are a one-use h jar, and
they’re meant to be recycled, and as are the caps,
because you can see that once you
use the seal there, the rubber disintegrates. And then you don’t
get a tight seal that would prevent food spoilage. – I see this ring. I remember my mother would
can pears and reuse the lid. How many times can
we reuse this kind? – Once, we really– – Only one use? – Yes, at USDA, we really
recommend this to be a one-use because, just like this one,
when the rubber here is heated, then the seal becomes
ineffective after that. With the seals, you always want
to pay attention and follow directions. It will tell you
how to treat them before you put them on the jar. If you heat them too long,
you destroy the rubber. If you do not heat
them long enough, then the rubber is not soft
enough to make that seal. – And they’re not that
expensive, so reuse one time– use it one time, throw
it away, and buy more. – Right, if you’re
canning, you’re going to an awfully
lot of trouble and you want to produce a good
product of state fair quality. – Ah, yes. – Jars like this, also,
are a one-use jars. You can save these. You could put
buttons or something like that to show
off some collection. And we no longer can
in half-gallon jars. I know at one time, and your mom
probably put pickles in these. – She used a lot of these, yes. – And we know, now, that
the center of the food does not get hot enough
to make a safe product, so we don’t recommend this. – There have been a lot of
changes in the regulations regarding this. – Yes, there have. In the 1986, there
was a lot of research done right after the war
with the victory gardens that the extension service did. And then again in the late 80s,
there was a lot of research because foods changed. Tomatoes become less acidic. The public prefers different
tasting fruits and vegetables, so we have some new guidelines. – And in the news, we’ve
been hearing more and more about some of the
food poisoning, some of the organisms, and it seems
like they’re changing, as well. – Certainly, they’re
becoming more virulent. And if you are canning,
if you follow directions, that’s the whole key. You follow directions, you
will have a perfect product. I wanted to show you some
pears that had been canned. This are pears that were
canned in a light syrup. These were canned
in a medium syrup. These in water. And these in apple
juice, different kinds of preservation. They’re all food-safe. – I like that one. – Yeah, that’s the most
attractive, isn’t it? If you had someone with
diabetes in your family, you may want to
can them in water. Sugar certainly acts as a
preservative for canned fruit. – So that’s why this
one looks nicer? – Mm-hmm, sometimes, Curtis,
people have what is called floating fruit. And that’s where
there’s a lot of space between the fruit
and the liquid. This happens with a raw pack. It’s where the apples
are not cooked first. They’re put into the jar
and covered with the syrup. And as they’re processed
in the water bath canner, then the apples exhaust
the air and the liquid, and they become
lighter then the syrup. It doesn’t hurt a thing. It’s not a food safety
problem, it’s just not very pretty to look at. And you can avoid that by
heating the apples or fruit in the syrup for five minutes. Just simmer them and then
pack them into the jar. I’d like to talk a little bit
about the pressure canner, too, because, in order for
vegetables to be canned, they must be canned in
the pressure canner. In order to destroy
the botulinum spore, the food must reach
240 degrees Fahrenheit. And the only way you can
do that is under pressure. – I think people think
that’s too complex to do. But if you don’t do it, it
sounds like a real safety problem. – It is. It has a real safety problem. We sure don’t want
anyone doing water bath canning with vegetables. It’s just not the thing
to do for food safety. And if you follow the directions
that come with your canner, there is absolutely no problem. My master food preservers
all learned to use the canner and have a very safe product. – And how do you keep
your canner calibrated? I know that’s something
you’ve helped people with. – Yes, anyone can bring the
lid, and all we need is the lid. Bring it to the any
Cooperative Extension office, and we have testers where we
build up pressure in a tester, and then we test the dial. If it’s more than
one pound off, we do recommend that
people get a new dial. They’re about $17 to purchase. – That’s cheap for the
safety that it gives you. – Oh, it certainly is. I wanted to show you, too,
something that happens. Sometimes, when after
you finished processing, and we get in a hurry, and
we either lift the weight to get rid of the pressure– – Pss. – –or some people will set it
in the sink and run water over it. When that happens,
what that will do is pull the liquid from the jar. And you can see
here that has a head space of a couple of inches. And over a period of
time, these carrots will turn dark because
they are exposed to oxygen. – Is this sealed and
safe for the time when it’s first taken out? – Yes, and you will always
want a good, safe seal. But eventually,
probably, this one will become unsealed
because the liquid came between the seal and the jar. We recommend that you not keep
any canned goods longer than 12 months, whether it’s commercial
that you buy in the grocery store or home canning. And you can see the
difference here. – I think I like this one. – Now, that’s the newer one. That was the one that
was done this year. This one is a
couple of years old and you can really see how it’s
deteriorated in color, flavor, and texture. Mm-hmm, and of course,
the longer you keep them, the more chance you
have for food spoilage. – Patricia, I remember
hearing all my life that beans were a special botulism risk. Is that true? – That’s true for
all vegetables. All vegetables must be done
in the pressure canner. That’s a really safe way
to make a good product. Because the vegetables
are low acid, they have to be processed
under extreme heat, and you can only do that
with a pressure cooker. – And so say it over, and over,
and over, again, vegetables, you said meats, poultry,
seafood, all of those must be done in a
pressure canner. Do you have publications
to advise people on that? – Yes, we certainly do. We have three publications. If you’re preserving tomatoes at
home, if you are canning them, and that’s guide E-306, home
canning of fruits, guide E-319, and home canning of
vegetables, guide E-307. Your viewers can request
these from any office in the state, any Cooperative
Extension Service office, and we’ll be happy to mail them. – Well, one of the
purposes of this show is to encourage
people to garden. But then to use what they’ve
produced in the garden, we want them to use it safely. So thank you so much for
this excellent information. – You’re welcome, Curtis. Thanks for having me. [MUSIC PLAYING]