Waterbath Canning 101: Dual Canning Rack

Have you been thinking about canning? Do you love jars as much as we do (Look Out World–We’re #RaisingTheJar)?

*WARNING* The waterbath canning method Farm-to-Table-Dual-Canning-Rackdescribed below is only for preserving tomatoes, salsa, jellies, jams, fruits (whole, sauces, chutneys, pie filling, etc.) and other high-acid foods. For preserving meats, poultry, vegetables, chili, fish and other low-acid foods you will need a Pressure Canner (and different set of steps).

The Farm to Table canning tools can simplify the process, so check them out at your grocery store. The Dual Canning Rack in particular helps you safely place a set of  canning jars into a pot of water, keeping the jars off the bottom of the pot and allowing water to circulate on all sides.

Here are the steps you need to know to get started!

  1. (a) Wash jars, lids and bands in hot soapy water. Rinse well. (b) Sterilize jars, lids and bands by boiling them in a pot of water. (c) Keep jars warm until ready to use, minimizing risk of breakage when filling with hot food. Keep them in a pot of simmering water.
  1. Fill a large pot with enough water to cover jars with at least 1 inch of water above. Heat to a simmer and close with lid.
  2. (a) Prepare recipe of your choice, following instructions carefully. Even the slightest deviation can ruin the recipe. Remember to only use recipes for waterbath canning! (b) Place a canning funnel over jars and pour prepared foods inside. Follow canning recipe for correct fill-level. Your jars will need headspace between the food and rim to allow for food expansion. (c) Remove air bubbles by sliding a small non-metallic spatula into jars, gently pressing food against the opposite side. Clean any food away from jar outer rims. (d) Center sterile lid on the jar, and twist on band until “fingertip tight.”

*WARNING* Bands must not be over-tight. Air inside jars must be able to escape during canning.Farm-to-Table-Jar-Lifter

  1. (a) Place the Dual Canning Rack into the simmering pot of water. (b) Use Jar Lifter to place sealed jars into the submerged Dual Canning Rack. Each jar should be covered by 1 inch of water.
  1. Cover pot with lid and bring the water to a steady boil. The duration of the boiling time varies depending on the food/recipe.
  1. (a) Turn off heat and let stand in water for 5 minutes. (b) Remove the jars from the water using a jar lifter. Place the jars upright on a dishtowel or rack to cool for 12 hours.

*WARNING* After removing jars from Dual Canning Rack, do not re-tighten or over tighten bands even if some seem loose.

Ta-da! You did it!

Now before storing, check your fully cooled jars for a tight seal. If the lid flexes up or down it is not sealed properly. Refrigerate improperly sealed jars for immediate use.

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