Last night I realized we do have enough Strawberries and Ruhbarb to do a small batch of jam. I went and checked out a recipe I had seen over at Food in Jars website. As I clicked my way on to the site I found she is doing a give away for a Ball Home Canning Discovery Kit.The kit has 3 pint jars, a canning basket that holds only 3 jars and a recipe booklet.I signed up for the give away because I was excited about the smallness of the canning basket.This nifty basket can be used in whatever kettle or pot you have it will fit in with enough room to cover the jars as you process them,awesomeness! If I had that basket I wouldn't always have to heat up my giant canning kettle for small batches of jars.If I won the give away it wouldn't be here for the jam I am wanting to make but the next time, if I was the lucky winner , I wouldn't have lug out the big kettle,wait forever for it too heat or use more water and power than a few jars are worthy of.
After I had clicked on the comment send button I thought to myself.."Wait a minute! I need to call Mom" Somewhere in the back of my mind was a thought I couldn't pin down about my Mom and canning kettles.I think I had even blogged about this vauge idea.Had I? Never mind,I'll just call and maybe I'll end up repeating myself in a posting but oh well.
So I ring Mom and fill her in on the small batch of jam,the small basket Ball now makes and my missing thought finally arrives in my head.The question I posed to my Mom was "I don't have to have a canning basket to can right? Didn't you tell me you can just put a kitchen towel in the bottom a pot so the jars don't rattle around?" Mom's answer was,you don't have to have a canning kettle or basket.She then reminded me that she had told me once upon a time about how she never had an actual canning kettle and just used a big pot for her canning.As long as the pot has enough room for an inch or more of water to be over the tops of the jars you are good.
I can't tell you how nice this thought is to me.Sometimes getting the big kettle out for smaller jobs is just a big pain in the butt.And I think about the water used and the power too and cringe.Too much waste! Now that Mom has reminded me/filled me in on this I feel much more inspired to do smaller batches of things.
My Mom was impressed with Food in Jars promoting smaller batches of canning.Mom said that it made sense,a person could put things up as they came into season in your own garden.I guess no one had thought of this back when Mom was canning.It was always these big canning days filled with rows and rows of jars.
Maybe I have repeated myself about not needing a canning kettle to can or maybe all of you already knew this gem but for some reason it excites me.Probly because now my small job can stay a small job all beacuse I can just use my soup pot.
So this evening sandwhiched between dinner,Scout drop off and pick up Chance and I will be making jam.And even if our weather isn't looking like summer the house will smell like it.I'll let you know how it all goes.