I’m terrified of my pressure canner

I’m a seasoned canner, but when it comes to my pressure canner – that’s another story altogether.

Alas, my freezer overfloweth, and something has to be done.

One thing you should know about me and my freezer:

Some people collect stamps. I collect chicken carcasses.

And leek greens. And pea pods. And pretty much anything else that would impart lovely flavour to a pot of water.

Every chicken dinner, every trim of the (appropriate) veggies, the bone from the Easter ham, rabbits, old laying hens, you name it – go into bags in my freezer waiting for a rainy day. Literally.

I just can’t bare to see it go to waste.

To me, stock is a miracle, worthy of an appropriate level of respect, awe and adoration. You can take next-to-nothing and turn it into a life-giving, healing, nourishing, filling, soul warming broth.

I mean really. What could be better than that?

But I digress.

My fear. My pressure canner. I am determined to overcome.

I want to be able to get all those stock ingredients out of the freezer and made into stock – stock that can sit on the shelf in the quiet of the cold room and make space in my freezer for more . . . You guessed it – ingredients for stock!


Here I sit, sipping a hot chocolate and typing away while a dragon hisses and spits behind me.

I turn my back to it boldly. Brash.

And jump up every two seconds to be sure it’s not about to explode.

If you, too, would like to face your pressure canning fear, be sure to watch for Pressure Canning 101, coming tomorrow.

6 thoughts on “I’m terrified of my pressure canner

  1. oldworldgarden

    We grew up in the age where our parents wouldn’t pressure can anything because of the old horror stories of blowing up the kitchen. Check out our post “Canning….No, you are not going to blow up the kitchen” at http://oldworldgardenfarms.wordpress.com/2011/09/. We took the leap a few years back and bought a pressure canner, read up on every instruction possible, and low and behold….we LOVE it!!! Making that first step is the hardest, but so worth it when it comes to the ability to can more and in a more timely manner! Make sure you add a little vinegar to the water in your pressure canner to avoid water rings on your glass jars! Good luck!!!

    1. The Slow Foods Mama Post author

      Hehe. I love the post.

      I didn’t grow up canning anything at all – My grandmother was a city girl from Manchester and “didn’t go in for that sort for thing.” She was too busy getting her hair and nails done to can, bless her heart.

      My hubby and his grandmother taught me how to water-bath can, and at first that was scary enough! But I’m motived to overcome my terror just because I know pressure canning offers a lot of opportunities for quick meals.

      Thanks for the tip about the vinegar!

      I managed to successfully can a batch of homemade chicken stock. I’m so excited to get my stock stash out of my freezer and onto my cold room shelves!

  2. arealfoodlover

    I am right in the middle of researching pressure canning. I’m trying to figure out if that high of a heat does any damage to the nutrients in the stock. I would absolutely love to make giant crock pots full of soup and can the left overs. My freezer looks just like yours until I figure out the answer to that question.
    Looking forward to your canning 101 post.

    1. The Slow Foods Mama Post author

      Heat is rarely a good thing for nutrients, one of the major drawbacks of canning for sure. I figure the food I am putting in the cans is such better quality than what I could buy at the store, that hopefully it will all even out. Not to mention you know exactly what’s in there – and what isn’t!

  3. Pingback: pressure canning 101 | eat your lawn { Tortoise & Hare Slow Foods Blog }

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