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31 Days of a Sparkling Vintage Summer, Day 22: Preserve summer’s bounty

canning adPerhaps you took to heart my farmer’s market post, got a little carried away, and are now wondering what to do with the abundant yield now overflowing from your fridge and counters. Or your garden is putting forth fabulous food faster than you and your family can eat it. If so, consider doing some home canning, that time-honored method of food preservation.

I didn’t learn how to can until quite recently. I never saw my mother or grandmothers do any canning. In fact–city women all–they seemed rather relieved that, in this day and age, they didn’t have to. Moving to a rural area and tasting the delights of home-canned fruits and vegetables made me interested in learning the process, and so not long ago a friend took me under her wing and showed me the basics.

If you’re new to canning, the Internet is filled with tutorial help. I like the information put out by Ball (suppliers of that most basic canning supply, the Mason jar, who mason jarpresumably know what they’re talking about). If you’re an experienced canner from way back, give us novices your best tips in the comments.

Try it. All it takes is some time and know-how and a little practice. And come winter, when you can pull that jar of pickled green beans or spiced apples off the shelf and place a bowl of summer sunshine on your dining table, with the satisfaction of knowing everything that went into it, you’ll be glad you did.

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