Canning Questions, Please Help?

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by kaneohegirlinaz, Jul 15, 2012.

  1. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    I did a search here on Chef Talk for past discussions, but I couldn't find my answer. 

    I tried Google, nothing.

    So here's my question all, please help?!

    When I "put up" my Dilly Beans, I realized that I forgot to wipe off the rims 

    prior to putting the lids on and then into the water bath.  What will happen? 

    Will the beans spoil? 

    Should throw them out and start over? 

    Should I just put them in the 'fridge?

    I have only canned anything once before, and I thought that I messed that up too,

    but well, we're still here.
     
  2. chefross

    chefross

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    The reason you wipe off the rims is to make a good seal when you process the dilly beans.

    If after you've processed and the lids are sealed anyway, you should be okay. If not sealed, you can either process again or else just keep them in the fridge to use up.
     
  3. thatchairlady

    thatchairlady

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    Agree that as long as jars sealed, you should be fine... especially with pickly stuff.  You should probably pick up a canning FUNNEL... I have an ANCIENT, banged up, aluminum one that came from my Grandmother's house.  Has opening that just fits inside a small mouth canning jar... not JUST the small jars... just BARELY inside small jars.  Ya end up with little/no stuff on rims to need to wipe away.
     
  4. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    Thatchairlady, I was trying to avoid buying any equipment, mainly because I’m just testing the waters in the world of canning.  Having done this only once last summer with not the best results.  I put up Italian style Roasted Sweet Red Peppers, the way my DH describes his Italian (from Italy) Grandmother made them.  She had her basement walls lined with different jars of goodies.  Anyway, I do ramble…

    So, if I heard three load POPs as the jars were cooling, does that mean that they sealed and I’m out of the danger zone?  Or should I be safe and stash the cuties in the cold box?

    And then another question while I'm here ...

    I left the recommended 1/2 inch of head space, noe the beans have all floated up to the top of the jar, is this okay?

    [​IMG]
     
  5. thatchairlady

    thatchairlady

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    Press on lids... if they have any give (slightly up), they didn't seal... if every so slightly indents and a solid thunk when tapped, they're sealed and fine.  Your beans look fabulous!  I just made a few jars of pickled beans a few days ago.  Was in a funky (GOOD) little market where they had 2 LB bags of nice looking green beans (we always call them string beans) for $1!!  HAD to buy them, even though WAY more than I'd ever eat before they started going south.  Googled recipes and decided on one that had sorts of a bread & butter (sweet) brine.  Jars were layered with THIN sliced onions, red peppers and beans, covered with the HOT brine and then into water for about 15 minute simmer.  Tho I was sure I jammed in as much as possible and still leaving the headroom, mine floated up like yours.  Does NOT mean anything is wrong with them.  Have a feeling that the 15 minutes or so in simmering water just softens thing enough so that can get closer together.

    And the canning funnel is NOT an expensive tool to add to your canning supplies.  You could actually take a Dollar Store funnel and cut off the "spout" flush with bottom... using little hack saw or serrated knife that you're NOT terribly attached to.

    Could you post your dilly recipe, please?
     
  6. maryb

    maryb

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    Plastic canning funnels are very cheap at WalMart, probably a couple $$ at most. I use mine for filling jars with dried goods too for better storage.
     
  7. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    oooohhhh - kay!  gotcha 'lady!  I do have a couple of el-cheap-o Walmart plastic funnels that could work, along with my VERY sharp serrated knife, WHAM-O!

    Miss MaryB, dang it, ya' know I was just in Walmart and didn't even think to look at what they had in the way of canning equipment.  Although ya know, I just came back from town again this afternoon at the "fancy mall" with the high end stores, 'ya all know which ones I mean... /img/vbsmilies/smilies/wink.gif

    anywhos, they wanted $3.95 for just the magnet-lid-catcher-do-hickey!  I used my improv-canning-tongs to fish out the lids from the hot water bath...

    Maybe I'm a skin-flint, but I like to multipurpose equipment, not to mention that it helps to keep an old retired lady's mind sharp!

    as to my Dilly Bean Recipe, (*hit the hyperlink) may I humbly request that you read the article that I wrote on my experience?  (you get cred there 'lady) I had a great time doing it!
     
  8. thatchairlady

    thatchairlady

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    And W-marts prices on canning jars and lids... generally MUCH better than any place else.
     
  9. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    you know it sister!!  last summer I bought a case of 12 pint sized for $6.87, I still have 3 left!!!

    next week green beans are going on sale at the greengrocer down in town, I may go get a

    couple of pounds and put up a few more jars for us since the first three are earmark for Mom...

    once the sweet red peppers get cheaper, probably around August, I'll try my hand at those again...
     
  10. chefedb

    chefedb

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    Be careful when processing and canning low acid foods, these are the main culprit of problems. As the young lady stated above, if the top of the jar gives when you push on it, it was npt done right. When done properly you are creating an air and oxygen free type vaceum which stops the growth of most everything.. Which when you do open should slightly pop.  Key to canning and food preservation, is sanitation and cleanliness, as well as proper temps.
     
  11. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    Chefed, now you’re makin’ me nervous…

    The three jars I made the other day don’t give & they have a hearty “thunk” sounding “full” when tapped,

    but there are tiny air bubbles all around the beans…

    When I told Mom the other night that I made her something special, 

    she asked me, “oh, what was that dear?” 

    When I told her that I made her fav, I truly thought she’d be all happy,

    instead I got, “you’re not going to poison me are you?”
     
  12. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Local Girl, you do realize that Canning isn't the same as Hula Dancing.........
     
  13. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    Maybe that’s I when never do ‘um before, hAAA!!!  Nah, I did, one time …
     
  14. maryb

    maryb

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    Air bubbles are normal, just air coming out of the beans into the jar vacuum. If the lid doesn't pop down when you push on the center it sealed. Dilly beans are high acid foods, they are pickled, I make about 24 pints a year of the things because everyone wants them.
     
  15. chefedb

    chefedb

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    If it's a high acid food your ok if low or no acide plain green beans, mushrooms etc. please be careful.
     
  16. eastshores

    eastshores

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    Isn't the point of the brine (1 to 1 ratio of vinegar with at least 5% acidity to water) to provide the necessary acidity to be safe on non acidic foods? As far as I knew Dilly Beans are just pickled beans?
     
  17. maryb

    maryb

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    Dilly beans are high acid because of the vinegar. Regular canned beans in water are low acid and need pressure canning.
     
  18. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    So, I’m in the middle of coloring my hair and I was going over in my head once again what and how I did this…

    I thought that 8 cups for only one pound or so of beans, so I only used 6, but I forgot to add more Salt…

    Am I still in a safe zone?
     
  19. eastshores

    eastshores

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    Well as others have mentioned, the tops are designed to indicate a problem and there are two types of problem AFAIK.. 1. not getting a sufficient seal in which case the lid doesn't pull down completely. 2. after what you think is a successful processing, bacterial growth, which will produce gas as part of the metabolic process, will "push" the lid upward. The really nasty botulism grows when you have a successful seal but have not inhibited the growth properly with salt/acidity.

    The saying is better safe than sorry right? But then, I think canning in general is approached by most people (especially as we have shifted towards store bought foods) as a suspect endeavor right from the start. I've had to cautiously grow past some of those fears myself.. I've tasted wild mushrooms to see if they were acrid (with a lot of research prior) I've yet to find a good one and attempt to eat it! I've also had a go at lactose fermented pickles aka sour dills in which members of this forum were a great help. It's always a bit scary, and I am nowhere near what I would call a comfort zone on those things. But it's something our ancestors practiced, is a part of our lineage in food and I personally think it is worth the pursuit.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2012
  20. jamlady

    jamlady

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    I guess I don't quite understand the reference above. 8 cups of what? 

    Wiping the rims is important, but if you processed the jars in a water bath and the seal was made, you're good.  For future reference, the plasticol (red waxy perimeter of a canning lid) is like glue in a way. Once the temperature of the jar drops after processing, the "glue" tends to harden, making a perfect, unique connection with that imperfect jar rim. (E.g., no jar rim is perfect under a microscope. Lots of imperfections, ESPECIALLY if the jar is manufactured in China.) If you don't wipe a rim clean, and you leave a trace of sugary pickling juice, the seal may lose its hold mid-winter, breaking the vacuum, and causing the bacteria to enter and "party"!

    Best practice: always wipe the rim with a clean paper towel or cloth, lightly dipped in boiling water. 

    I can roughly 11,000 jars a year, still by hand. I can count the number of bad seals in a year on one hand. Upon examination, the bad seals are usually due to a tiny chip on the glass rim, or a lid that was mistakenly manufactured without a plasticol ring (that's always funny to find). But I KNOW that the seals are bad usually within an hour of canning. No big deal. Put the jar in the fridge and eat it! 

    One other thing. I totally get trying to can on a budget. I teach canning to lots of folks who are trying to save money and eat better.  But be very careful of using older jars. Compare a 30-year old jar with one made within the last 10 years. It doesn't take a microscope to FEEL the difference in the rims. The older, pretty jars have a discernible roughness, oftentimes an edge, on their rims. Those rims don't connect well to modern-day lids. Those older rims were fine when paraffin was used to can, because the rim wasn't important then!  But today's canning relies heavily on smooth, straight rims.

    Your beans look delicious!