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Canning 101: How To Preserve Your Summer Garden's Spoils Before They Spoil

The idea behind canning is to preserve the very freshest, ripest summer foods — be it seasonal fruit, vegetables or edible flowers — before they begin to decay. (Jackson Mitchell/Here & Now)

Fall is fast approaching and for Here & Now resident chef Kathy Gunst, it’s canning time. Kathy brings Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson recipes and samples for chile-sesame pickled green beans, pickled carrots, plum conserves and roasted tomato sauce. She also provides tips and advice for canning at home.


Why can?

A deeply philosophical question. But seriously, doesn’t it take time? Isn’t it complicated? Aren’t there safety risks?

The idea behind canning is to preserve the very freshest, ripest summer foods — be it seasonal fruit, vegetables or edible flowers — before they begin to decay. You want to capture that food at its finest moment and stop time.

This guide should help answer some of your questions and lead you to some great resources. Gather some friends, collect canning jars, take a visit to your local farmers market, friend’s garden or your own, and get canning.

Basic Canning Equipment And Instructions

Canning doesn’t have to be scary. But to do it safely and properly, you do have to follow some basic rules. Always find very fresh produce to work with. Otherwise, what’s the point?

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Canning jars and brand-new lids
  • A large pot (12- to 16-quart

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