On day 189 of my 366-day self-care challenge, I took a home canning class.
Okay, I admit it: canning scares me a little.
But I suppose that’s not such a bad thing, since even the slightest mishandling of ingredients or failing to follow a recipe can result in serious illness. (It’s no joke — people have died.)
I’ve always wanted to expand my knowledge of canning, and when I saw that our local natural market was offering a class, I could hardly contain my excitement.
Needless to say, learning how to can was my self-care exercise for the day.
Prior to the class, I had only ever canned a small batch of apple butter and a couple batches of freezer jam. It was a lot of work – like, a LOT of work – for just a few small jars, but it was fun and certainly worth the investment in terms of flavor.
Over the course of the 3-hour class, we canned a basil plum jam and pickled vegetables. The aromas that wafted around the room were amazing!
Some of what was covered wasn’t new to me, but I did learn quite a few new things:
- Just because a jar makes a popping noise as it cools doesn’t necessarily guarantee it has sealed.
- Chopsticks are great tools to remove bubbles.
- Pomona’s pectin makes it possible to use less sugar for jams.
- And how had I never heard of Weck jars before?!?
I love taking classes because it gives me a chance to practice new skills alongside an expert. It allows me to ask questions, make mistakes, and learn how to correct those mistakes all at the same time.
Tell us about your experience with canning.