On of my favorite ways to practice everyday economy is canning broth. This year post-Thanksgiving turkey was $0.19/lbs. It’s hard to be more economic than that. But unless it’s a holiday I’m not actually going to roast a whole turkey, so I part them out in sections to re-freeze, then all the leftover bits go in the pot for broth.
Broth is actually really easy to can, and I’m not going to tell you how. There’s an entire government entity dedicated to helping us not kill ourselves with food. It’s called the USDA and the link to their canning guide is attached below. They have scientists, facts, and people who write really clear directions. Just follow the guide.
But of course, like everyone, I cheat just a little. So, just so you have the whole truth here’s my canning cheating tips:
- I don’t sterilize my jars. I wash them really well in soap and water, but they’re not sterile
- I reuse lids! (and they’re not sterile either). Reusing lids means that sometimes a lid won’t seal, but you’ll know that right away and you can either re-process it or just put it in the fridge and use it first.
- Take the rings off after canning. This just keeps the lids from getting stuck on later in the year, it’s not actually important one way or the other.
- I don’t add any salt to the jars. I almost never can anything with added salt because I want maximum flexibility when I go to cook with it.
Please Note! When you purchase our canned goods, I didn’t cheat at all on anything. Everything that leaves this farm is canned in brand new, sterile jars, with brand new sterile lids.
And just for a bonus, one thing not to cheat on. The instructions my husband made me read before I started using my pressure canner said to check the valves and wash them before each use. Last year I kind of glanced at the valves before I started, and they basically looked fine. I’ve always believed a little that even though I, and many many other women, use pressure canners all the time, the canner is still mostly a stovetop bomb that could take us all out any moment.
Last summer the stovetop bomb went off with a full load of green beans in it. It had probably only reached about five pounds of pressure when the thing exploded with a bang of doom. The weight shot off and hit the microwave, children and dogs scattered screaming, wet brown splatter covered the walls, and I just stood there waiting to see when I’d realize we were all dead.
It was a mud dauber. A mud dauber built its horrid spider filled nest in the vent of my canner. Get some pipe cleaners and clean your canner vent, every single time.