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The Times Are Changing For Traditional Canning Recipes

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
The Times Are Changing For Traditional Canning Recipes

What is known about canning has changed, however much of the public has not changed with it.

That is according to Overton County Ag Extension Director Christina Swallows. Swallows said she still hears people canning without processing which can poison anyone who consumes it.

Swallows said science is going into canning, but it is still about the basics.

“We want to make sure that everyone is canning properly and we’re still back to the basics of canning with a pressure canner for those vegetables and meats and anything that has a pH of 4.6 or higher.”

Swallows said hot water baths for canning take a long time and still can fail to reach the temperatures needed to make the product safe. She said for some produce even steam canners cannot guarantee safety.

“Lets say green beans for example, in a water bath canner you cannot get it to 240 to 250 degree temperature that is needed to kill that botulism,” Swallows said. “A canner maximum is 212 degrees in a hot water bath and even in a steam canner. So you’ve got to use the pressure.”

Swallows said she knows using canning recipes from the family is a tradition. However, with what is known now, people need to do their research.

“People think that, ‘my jar is sealed, I’m good to go,’ but that’s not necessarily true because because botulism is a microorganism that grows in those jars,” Swallows said. “They don’t need the air like other organisms and so they continue to grow and botulism is a deadly bacterium.”

Swallows said that people should use recipes that have been tested because it takes years to gather data from testing. She said that not only is she teaching classes about preserving food products, but people can call anytime to get questions answered.

Swallows said her next class is August 26 at 4:00 PM on one jar at a time fermentation There will be a September 2 class on canning apple pie filling.

Both classes will be at the Joe L. Evins Community Center.


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