Run the jars you are using through a regular wash cycle and take them out right before they are used. It is a challenge to gather all of the later books just because there are so many! These canning books are fun to collect and turn up frequently just about everywhere. It's not necessary to sterilize the lids and bands. Refrigerate and use the contents as soon as possible. Many important historical facts about Ball fruit jars can be learned from studying the Blue Books. These books were typically used by home canners as a reference during the canning process and are often found completely worn out and stained! Preparing the Jars If the dishwasher is safe for sterilizing baby bottles, it's safe for sterilizing Mason jars.Next
Alltrista took over production of the Ball Blue Book in 1995. You'll hear a high-pitched sound if the seal is good. This maintains their heat and keeps them consistent with the hot food you're pouring into them. When done, remove the pot lid and let the jars sit for at least 5 minutes. Creating the Magic Once your delicious food is cooked and ready to be jarred, use a canning funnel or a large spoon to ladle the mixture into a Mason jar. Testing the Seals After 24 hours, remove the bands and try to lift the lid off a jar.Next
Screw down the lid with the band. Don't economize and reuse the lids — the rubber sealant is violated when it's used the first time, leaving it open for incomplete sealing when used a second time. Those are the sounds anxiously awaited by home cooks making homemade jams, jellies, chutneys or any other food that moves from fresh to canning jars for long-term preservation. Bands can be reused; lids cannot. Remove them carefully — they're hot! If the lid is secure, store the jars in a cool, dark place and use within 18 months.Next
If it comes off easily, it didn't seal. Dick Cole's valuable reference material can be. Use a spatula to press down the contents all around the jar, packing as tightly as you can. It is not unusual to find one with the cover missing. Jarden became the new care-taker and producer with the 2009 edition and has continued with the latest edition, which was produced in 2017.Next
A deep pot, cake rack, rubber spatula and a spoon work as well. Do you need all these for preserving success? Don't let the jars sit on the bottom of the pot. In total, there are over 75 of them to find from a period spanning almost 110 years. . For insurance, keep a kettle of water ready on the side if your pot isn't full enough to cover the jars, plus 1—2 additional inches of water. The Minnetrista museum in Muncie, Indiana has one example of each of the early ones. When I'm not writing, I'm cooking! Just make sure they're clean and dry.
They should be concave, effecting a vacuum seal. Dick Cole former curator at the Minnetrista museum and Ball researcher, as well as a Ball Corporation retiree has studied these first books very carefully and has come up with a classification for them with specific details on the differences. Without them, you risk your food getting contaminated. The late Jeff Harper another serious Ball collector, who was a great grandson of F. Cover the pot and let it boil for the time recommended in your recipe, making sure it's at least 10 minutes. I made a check list and photo guide of nearly all of the Ball Blue Books.Next
Most jars have an indicator on the rim for guidance. Tools of the Trade Canning and preserving don't require special tools, yet the market is flooded with specially designed water-bath canners, jar lifters, canning funnels, bubble freers and headspace tools. Mason jars, Ball jars and Kerr jars are brand names that describe the same product — glass jars used for canning since the mid-1800s. You need this headspace for the vacuum to occur. The two items you must have, however, are the lids and bands that fit on top of the glass jars.Next
Don't fill it up to the top; instead, keep room between the top of your food and the lid. Let them rest for 12—24 hours. And those popping sounds you heard as the jars rested on the towel when removed from the boiling water? Cooking Out the Bad Stuff A pot of hot water with a cake rack on the bottom should be ready for the jars. For the most part, the change was in the cover design. Sealing the Mason jars is the most important step in the process — that's when the goodness is contained in a bacteria-free environment. It's how the commercial producers preserve those jams and jellies that you see on grocery store shelves that stay fresh for ages. Wipe the jar; then place the lid over the top.Next
If you're in doubt, use a teaspoon to rap on top of the lid. Sounds of a Good Seal Look at the lids. . . . .