Thursday, July 26, 2012

First Canning Experience

The other day my sister and I had our first experience with canning. Neither one of us had much knowledge going into it, but with a little bit of research and all the supplies in front of us we went for it. Besides our garden that was bursting at the seams to be harvested, our first motivation was finding a interesting mix of pickling spices. After one smell the spices intrigued us. Inside our little container were cloves, mustard seeds, cumin, bay leaves, dill, allspice, and a ton of others I can't think of but I wrote them all around the container if someone should ask. 

My first goal was to make pickles, I mainly wanted cucumbers to use for my juicing, but my mom has a knack for buying every variety of vegetables and fruits she can find. So of course, we have a ton of picking cucumbers. I juice them sometimes, but we had so many in the fridge it was time to pickle. My sister and I just decided to do a sort of fridge ready pickling because we will eat them so fast, they don't need to have a shelf life. The pickles are so zesty it's fantastic and have the best crunch I've ever experienced compared to the store bought. We may have to make some with a shelf life after all. 
Pickling Spice from our Co-op Maple City Market
Pickling Cucumbers 
We also tried our hand at salsa making, but in the middle of peeling the tomatoes, we had more of a desire to create a fresh and light tasting pico de gallo. This is probably one of my most favorite creations yet. Even without a fresh onion (we used a little dried minced onion) this was great. For the last couple days I've been eating pico de gallo and some chips for lunch. I find myself nearly licking the salsa bowl clean before telling myself to stop. I'm very happy that this tomato season has just begun and soon we will be making some pasta sauce!
Pico de gallo with a wide variety of tomatoes, sweet banana peppers, sweet jalapeno peppers, onion & garlic chives, dehydrated cilantro, dried minced onion, and garlic powder.

Accomplishments from our first day canning!

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