Please Explain: Canning and Pickling

Friday, August 20, 2010

Wondering what to do with this summer's bounty? This week's Please Explain is all about canning, pickling, and preserving. We're joined by  Katherine Alford, director of the Test Kitchen at The Food Network, and food writer Eugenia Bone.


Katherine Alford

Comments [14]

miriam katin from new york

Before we are all melting into an oozing sugary jelly from the memories of cannings past, I must say that my memories are anything but sweet. In fact remembering summers in our kitchen in Budapest I recall the terrifying steam, the pots with boiling jam jars, a veritable hell. But worst of all, when my mother needed my help to put my tiny finger on the string she was tying the finished jar with in order to secure a tight knot and me having to pull away before she would tighten the string it was sheer terror.
I barely remember taste and beauty of the final products only my great appreciation and relief of finding ready jams and canned products in this great USA.

Aug. 20 2010 02:25 PM
S Block from NYC

Freezing is not like ice crystal razor blades inside cell structure.

The damage to the cells is because of the expansion of H2O in crystalline form vs. H2O liquid (actually the expansion starts at 4C or 39F and continues to 0 / 32)

So what happens is more like Hulk in a little pair of jeans.

Aug. 20 2010 01:59 PM
dboy from nyc

Pesto is a seasonal thing not meant to be "preserved"!

Pesto is made and eaten when the ingredients are at thier best... pesto is definitely a summertime thing.

Don't mess with nature!

Aug. 20 2010 01:56 PM
Christopher from Chinatown

To preserve pesto Italians have a handy trick -- they freeze it in ice cube trays. Then you just pop out individual servings of pesto, one per guest.

Aug. 20 2010 01:55 PM
Diana from Upper East Side from NYC

Lovely show. My water bath canner is worth every inch of closet shelf space it takes up! There is nothing as good as home made jam or fruit butter and it makes wonderful gifts, especially for those friends who have everything. It's something that can't be bought in a store, takes up little space and doesn't have to be dusted or polished!

Aug. 20 2010 01:52 PM
David from NJ

We received 2 big Ball-Dome jars of homemade tomatoe sauce 1 year ago, are they still good, how long will they last?

Aug. 20 2010 01:50 PM
David from NJ

We received 2 big Ball-Dome jars of homemade tomatoe sauce 1 year ago, are they still good, how long will they last?

Aug. 20 2010 01:50 PM
Mary from Westchester NY

Family members have used canning recipes passed down from grandmothers and include pickling eggplant, pressing out all the vinegar and then adding oil & garlic to the jar to preserve & marinate. They have kept these jars once opened in kitchen cabinet. Is this safe? Once I questioned this practice but was told it was how they've always done it & no one has gotten sick.

Aug. 20 2010 01:43 PM
Emily from Brooklyn

What do the experts think about the method of sterilizing jars in the oven versus in the water bath? I have used this method, and my lids sealed without having to process in a water bath. But I have heard that it might not be as safe.

Aug. 20 2010 01:40 PM
Timothy Stoller from NJ

Any thoughts on vacuum packing foods for freezing - any advantages or problems?

Aug. 20 2010 01:38 PM
Danielle Jensen from upper west side

can u explain how to freeze blueberries.I read once to lay them on a baking sheet in single layer,freeze, then pack in bag which i did. But when I went to use them they were soggy and watery. Also how long can canned things keep - forever?

Aug. 20 2010 01:36 PM

Any precautions, recommendations for canning low sodium foods?

I have to avoid salt, and I seem to recall that canning without salt may mean lesser shelf life...?

Aug. 20 2010 01:31 PM

Canning and pickling are fine but very time
consuming and laborious. Freezing works for most produce and is a lot less work - of
course you need to have freezer space.

Aug. 20 2010 12:52 PM
Peg from Ithaca

I've been canning for many years and my questions are about the metal lids. Recently I've heard that the plastic coating used on cans of processed food is not good for you. What is the coating used on these canning jar lids? Is it safe? Also, I've noticed that recently the price for these lids has risen to up to 30 cents per lid. Why do they cost so much? Is canning now becoming more of an elite hobby rather than a cost saving way of preserving produce?

Aug. 20 2010 12:35 PM

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