The kitchen smarts and culinary lure of canning have seen quite a comeback in recent years—and with good reason. Not only is canning useful and resourceful, but it’s a rewarding opportunity to support your own chomp factor from home. And canning-dates with friends and family are just plain fun, too.
Think berries: Wolff’s Apple House carries a sweetly mouth-popping selection of local strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and also blackberries that travel a bit further to get to the farm market. Berry-speak is a language of great zeal in summer months, so your appetite will likely thank you later if you dive into testing out canning some jams in the warm season. And when winter finally rounds the corner, your palate will be especially grateful for your canning labors.
Wolff’s Apple House also gladly equips farm market-goers with canning supplies like jars, lids, pectin and more. If you have questions about canning, feel free to reach out for insights.
Homesweet Homegrown: How to Grow, Make and Store Food, No Matter Where You Live hit the book market last spring and stems from Southeastern Pennsylvania author Robyn Jasko. And she fully advocates the perks of time spent canning.
“Canning is a good way to store (or ‘put up’) a large amount of food for a long time, without having to refrigerate it,” Jasko says. “When you can something, you kill the food-spoiling organisms and create an airtight seal to preserve the food for up to 5 years.”
The section of her book dedicated to canning offers ideas for different methods of approach but also how to keep your food-intelligence strong by understanding how to avoid the frightening illness known as botulism which can crop up if canning is not properly and safely done.
“Botulism spores can survive when you don’t process your canned food enough, or you don’t have high enough acid content in your food,” Jasko adds. “Luckily, fruits (including tomatoes) are high in acid, but to be safe, you can add a few tablespoons of lemon juice to each jar.”
Canning Across America has some taste bud-tugging recipes by chefs and cookbook authors; you can eye-peruse recipes for blueberry plum basil jam, organic strawberry jam, raspberry jam, simple blackberry jam and spiced pickled strawberries from these food-sly folks on the Canning Across America website.
Ask the older generations in your family if they’ve written down or memorized berry jam recipes. Consider how rewarding it would be to share that food heritage forward by keeping such cherished old flavors alive in a time when life is so fast-paced and rushed. Slow food is good food. And berries are just delightful by default!