The other night, Nick and I were in the garden, picking row after row of green beans, when it hit me: this is not how I ever would have imagined my life.
I mean…growing up, I was sure I would be living on a street named after me in a mansion with my husband, Taylor Hansen. There would be roller coasters in the backyard, plus a huge pond with manatees, just because I love those huge sea cows.
I never thought I would have a garden this big or fresh figs growing in the yard. It never crossed my mind that we would be growing our own corn. Corn!
And canning? Until two years ago, it was something that terrified me – I didn’t think it would be part of my life from spring to fall and be something that I actually liked to do.
I didn’t think I’d be living in the mountains, in a town with 1 stoplight, in an old farmhouse with a hundred-year-old front door. Or have to deal with country cats that bring us dead birds and moles and mice and leave feathers all over the porch.
But I love it. Every minute of it.
Except maybe the dead animals gifts from the cats. Ew. I still make Nick clean up the remains because I start dry heaving if I get too close.
Ever since I made my first batch of jam 2 years ago, I’ve been hooked on canning.
Sure, I still get scared that something won’t turn out or I won’t hear all the lids pop and have to eat something right away instead of squirreling it away in the basement for this winter.
Canning jam and tomatoes and green beans is just part of my summers now. From May to September, I spend way too much time standing in the kitchen, cutting fruits and veggies, stuffing jars, watching the pressure cooker, and waiting to hear the sweet “ping” of victory when the lids seal.
This Saturday, July 14th, is National Can-It-Forward Day and I’m so happy to be celebrating! I’ll be canning more green beans this weekend…it feels like those are never ending. Anyone want to come help me? I’ll give you beans and I make a mean pot of coffee…
If you want to learn more about canning, find recipes, tips or tricks, the Ball website has a ton of information to help get you started.
This kit comes with everything you need to get started: a home canning kit, pectin, labels, containers, and the Ball book of preserving, which pretty much stays on my kitchen counter all summer long.
Want to win?
Tell me what you want to can first – homemade jam? tomato sauce? sliced peaches? Let’s hear it!
Want extra entries?
- Ask a question in the comments – any question about canning – and I’ll put them together in a Canning FAQ and try to get them all answered for you. If I don’t know the answer, I’ll get it from someone at Ball!
- Like Ball Canning on Facebook and tell them BranAppetit sent you and you’re ready to Can-It-Forward
- Tell me your favorite summer produce
- Share this post to spread the Canning love on twitter or facebook and let me you know did
Want some easy canning recipes to get you started? These are some of my favorites: