Choc-Honeycomb Ice Cream Pudding – Delicious for Celebrations or Anytime

Paula and I decided to cook dinner for her brother Wal for his birthday. For the menu we cooked wild Alaskan Salmon, a favorite of ours,  with new potatoes in parsley butter, carrots and beans from  Paula’s garden, and dessert was a delicious choc honeycomb ice cream pudding.  This dessert was taken from the Super Food Ideas magazine and believe me it is delicious.

choc-honeycomb-ice-cream-puddingChoc-honeycomb ice-cream pudding.

Ingredients:-

  • 1½ x 300g packets of chocolate sponge roles. (we used a chocolate cream filled sponge roll from Coles)
  • 2 liters hokey pokey ice cream – softened
  • 2 x 55g Violet Crumble bars, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup of dry-roasted hazelnuts, chopped

Topping:-

  • 180g block white chocolate, chopped (we used Cadbury’s Dream White Chocolate)
  • 1/3 cup thickened cream
  • strawberries – halved,
  • white chocolate curls ( I made the chocolate curls using a potato peeler)
  • silver cachous, to decorate (optional)

Method:-

Line an 8 cup capacity pudding basin with plastic wrap. (Good luck doing that, I found it to be a bit fiddly).

Cut the chocolate rolls into 1 cm thick slices. Reserve 4 slices. Line the base and side of the prepared pan with remaining cake slices, trimming to fit.

Place the softened ice cream in a bowl. Fold in the roughly chopped Violet Crumble and the chopped hazelnuts.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan, Level the top with a spatula and arrange the reserved cake slices over the top of the ice cream, pressing slightly to secure.

Cover with plastic wrap, then foil and freeze overnight.

Topping:-

Place white chocolate and cream in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on medium (50%) for 2 to 3 minutes or until smooth, stirring with a metal spoon every 30 seconds. Set aside for 15 minutes to cool slightly.

Decorating:-

Turn the pudding onto a plate. Remove the plastic wrap.

Spoon 1/3 of the chocolate sauce over the pudding. Stand for 5 minutes.

Decorate with strawberries, chocolate curls and cachous. Serve with the remaining chocolate sauce.

I didn’t read the last part of the recipe and so added all the topping instead of just 1/3 , but it turned out fine and it tasted fantastic.  The topping is not too sweet and the hidden bits of violet crumble and hazelnuts certainly add a touch of pizazz to the delicious hokey pokey ice cream. We also served it with extra strawberries and cream.

I will certainly make this dessert again.

Many thanks to Super Food Ideas Magazine.

Grasshopper Pie – Courtesy Nigella Lawson – Adults Only – Decadently Delicious.

grasshopper-pie

For this one I used a larger tart pan, if you use a smaller pan the pie is higher and looks much more impressive. This pie has grated chocolate on the top.

I have a few celebrity chefs that I love to watch on tv as they demonstrate their recipes with such ease and aplomb.

So the other night I was watching one of my all time favorites – Nigella Lawson.  I mean to say who doesn’t love watching this amazing woman whip up her delicious, taste tempting recipe – not me for one. I am an absolute convert. I have a range of her cookbooks and DVDs

So here I am tucked up on the lounge when she begins to make a Grasshopper Pie. On hearing the ingredients I’m intrigued, and decide that I have to try this out on the family, which I did over the holiday break.  Everyone loved it and so I think it is only fair that I share Nigella’s delightful recipe with you all. I hope she doesn’t mind.

The Grasshopper Pie recipe is from her book ‘Nigella Kitchen: Recipes from the Heart of the Home, which is absolutely chock full of wonderful, mouth watering recipes.


Grasshopper Pie

Ingredients:-

Base

28 chocolate creme filled sandwich cookies ( I used Oreo’s)

2 ounces good quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped ( I used ¼ cup dark chocolate chips)

3 Tsps soft unsalted butter

Filling

3 cups mini marshmallows
( I had trouble finding packets with just white marshmallows. And unfortunately the pink marshmallows do dilute the color. The second time I made it I just used large marshmallows and it worked just as well)

½ cup whole milk ( I don’t use a lot of milk so I keep long life whole milk in the cupboard for visitors who take milk in their tea, and this is what I used and it works fine)

¼ cup creme de menthe

¼ cup creme de cacao blanc

1½ cups heavy cream

Few drops green coloring (optional) I used a few drops because the pink marshmallows had softened the green color.

Method:

Base

Set aside 1 cookie for later use as decoration. (I forgot the second time I made it so I just grated chocolate over).

Process the remaining cookies and chocolate in a food processor until they form a crumb mixture.

Add the butter and process until the mixture starts to clump together.

Press the mixture into a high-sided fluted tart pan making a smooth base and sides with your hands or the back of a spoon. (Not having a fluted pan I just used a plain spring pan and it looks just as nice when the pie is turned out)

Put into the refrigerator to chill and harden.

Filling

Melt the marshmallows  in a saucepan over a low gentle heat along with the milk.

Once the milk starts to foam (not boil), take the pan off the heat and keep stirring until the marshmallows blend into the milk to make a smooth mixture.

Pour the mixture out of the saucepan into a heatproof bowl, then whisk in the creme de menthe and the creme de cacao. Leave until cool.

(I poured the mixture into a stainless steel bowl which of course was holding the heat so I placed the bowl into some cold water in the sink to quickly cool it down.)

In a medium bowl, whisk the cream until it starts to hold in soft peaks, then still whisking, add the cooled marshmallow mixture.  The filling should be thick but still soft, not stiff or dry, so that eventually, it will drop easily out of the bowl into the chilled pie crust.

When the marshmallow mixture and cream are combined, whisk in a few drops of food coloring, if desired.

Spread the filling into the chilled base, swirling it about with an icing spatula or silicon spatula to fill evenly.  Put the pie in the refrigerator, covered , to chill overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours until firm.

Crush the remaining cookie and sprinkle it over the top of the pie before serving.

MAKE AHEAD NOTE:

This pie can be made 1 or 2 days ahead. When chilled and firm, tent with aluminum foil ( try not to touch the surface with the foil as it will leave marks) and store in the refrigerator. Decorate just before serving. The pie will keep for around 3 to 4 days.

FREEZER NOTE:

The pie can be frozen for up to 3 months. Open-freeze undecorated pie just until solid, then wrap the pie (still in its tart pan) in a double layer of plastic wrap and a layer of foil.

To Thaw

Unwrap the pie and tent with foil, (try not to touch the surface with the foil as it will leave marks), then  thaw overnight in the refrigerator.  Decorate before serving.

My family, friends an I just love this pie. It’s just for adults and it’s decadently delicious.

NON- Alcoholic Version

For a non-alcoholic version you can replace the cream de menthe and creme de cacao with ½ tsp (2.5mls) of peppermint extract. It isn’t necessary to make up the amount of lost liquid by not adding the alcohol.  It is advisable to use a good quality natural peppermint extract instead of an artificial peppermint flavoring.

As you won’t be getting the green coloring from the creme de menthe you will need to add some green coloring otherwise you won’t get the desired effect as the pie will be white.

 

Weston Products Launches Website for Michael Symon’s New Product Line

michael-symon-live-to-cookCLEVELAND, Ohio (December 1, 2011) – Kitchenware manufacturer Weston Products has launched a new site, MichaelSymon.WestonProducts.com, as an online source for its latest line of specialty kitchen products, the Michael Symon Live to Cook collection.

Celebrity Chef Michael Symon is an Iron Chef, Food Network Star, host of ABC’s “The Chew,” and now, he has launched his first kitchenware line. The Michael Symon Live to Cook Collection by Weston includes a meat grinder, vacuum sealer, sausage stuffer, French fry cutter, burger presses, and several other stainless steel kitchen tools “for those who take cooking seriously.”
In addition to viewing product details and purchasing the items on the site, consumers can watch product demos hosted by the Iron Chef himself. The site also gives customers the opportunity to preview recipes from Weston’s Michael Symon “For Those Who Take Cooking Seriously” Recipe Collection, which is included free with each product in the line.

“We couldn’t be more excited about our partnership with Chef Symon,” said Michael Caspar, CEO of Weston Products. “Being from Cleveland made the partnership a perfect fit – our shared values on food preparation made it a no-brainer.”

Symon, currently the owner of four critically acclaimed restaurants and eight total locations, chose to partner with Weston Products to make restaurant-style cooking more approachable to the home cook. The self-proclaimed “meat-centric” chef selected products for crafting foods like burgers, sausages, and French fries from fresh ingredients.

“Weston products have changed the way I cook.” said Symon. “They make cooking easier, more efficient, and always fun.” In addition to MichaelSymon.WestonProducts.com, the Michael Symon Live to Cook collection is set to be available at fine retailers across the country in the next coming months.

live-to-cook-michael-symonAbout Michael Symon

Chef Michael Symon cooks with soul. Growing up in a Greek and Sicilian family, the Cleveland native creates boldly-flavored, deeply satisfying dishes at his four restaurants in America’s heartland: Lola, Lolita, Roast and B Spot. He also shares his exuberant, approachable cooking style and infectious laugh with viewers as an Iron Chef on the Food Network. Since being named a Best New Chef by Food & Wine magazine in 1998, Michael and his restaurants have been awarded numerous honors including Bon Appétit magazine’s Top 10 Best New Burger Joints; SoBe Wine & Food Festival’s People’s Choice award, The James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef and Gourmet magazine’s list of America’s Best Restaurants. Michael can be seen on Food Network’s Iron Chef and The Next Iron Chef, ABC’s The Chew and The Cooking Channel’s Cook Like an Iron Chef.

Live2Cook-Weston®- LogoAbout Weston Products

Founded in 1997, Weston Products is a leading manufacturer of specialty food processing equipment, specializing in commercial-grade meat processing equipment, home harvesting tools, and traditional style kitchenware. The company is an independently operated private company, owned by current management team Michael Caspar and Jason Berry. Weston Products was listed on the 2011 Inc. 5000, a list of the country’s fastest growing privately held companies.

More information on Weston Products can be found at http://www.westonproducts.com.

From Asparagus to Zucchini: Vegetable Canning for Beginners

Bell-peppersWelcome to the world of canning vegetables! Preserving vegetables yourself gives you the freedom to adjust cooking methods, ingredients, and flavor to taste—as well as to guarantee a stash of your seasonal favorites throughout the year, impress friends and family, and even save some cash in the process. Let’s start by looking at some of the vegetable canning basics.

Pressure Canning Vegetables

All vegetables except tomatoes, sauerkraut, and pickles are low enough in acid that they must always be processed in a pressure canner. Other methods are simply not safe. Because it takes only one spoonful from one jar of poisoned food to cause serious illness or death, the canner may be the most important investment you make.

All canners work according to the same principle. The pan has a tight sealing lid with a regulator. When a small amount of water (usually 1 to 3 inches) is heated in the canner, it is converted to steam, which builds up pressure and reaches temperatures substantially higher than boiling. At 10 to 15 pounds of pressure, the temperature is 240° to 250° F. Safety features maintain pressure at reasonable levels and auto-release if the pressure becomes too high.

There are two types of pressure canners—those with a dial gauge that shows the pressure, and those with a weight control that makes a noise when it reaches the required pressure. Before using any pressure canner, check to ensure that parts are in good working order and read the manufacturer’s directions, including recommended temperatures for your altitude.

Our preference for pressure canners is the All American Pressure Canner, we have found it to be the best for performance.

Step By Step

1.  After packing Mason Jars and fitting them with lids and screwbands, put the rack in the canner and add 2 to 3 inches of water.  Then place jars on the rack.  If you like, you may fill the rack before placing it in the canner.  Put the lid on the canner and fasten it securely.

2.  Open the petcock or remove the weight.  Heat on high until steam flows out.

3.  Continue to heat on high for 10 minutes before closing the petcock or placing the weight on the vent port.  During the next 3 to 5 minutes, the pressure will build.

4.  When the dial gauge shows the recommended amount of pressure, or when the petcock begins jiggling or rocking, set the timer for the time specified in your recipe.  At high altitudes, increase the pressure ½ pound for each 1,000 feet above sea level.

5.  Maintain a temperature at or just above the specified gauge pressure.  Weighted gauges will jiggle 2 or 3 times per minute or rock slowly, depending on the brand.  Avoid large variations in temperature, which may cause liquid to be forced from jars, jeopardizing the seal.

6.  When the time is up, turn off the heat, remove canner from burner if possible, and let it depressurize.  Do not use cold water to speed depressurization and avoid opening the vent port.  Let the canner sit 30 minutes if loaded with pints, or 45 minutes with quarts.  Some models cool more quickly and have vent locks that indicate when pressure is normal.

7.  When pressure has returned to normal, remove the weight or open the petcock.  Let canner sit for two minutes before unfastening and removing the lid.  Keep your face away from the canner to avoid escaping steam.

8.  Using a jar lifter, remove the jars and place them on a folded towel, allowing at least 1 inch of air to circulate between them. Let cool, then store in a cool, dry, dark place.


Timetable for Pressure Canning Vegetables

Vegetable

Method

Inches of Headroom

Minutes to Precook

Minutes to Process a Pint

Minutes to Process a Quart

Asparagus

Raw pack

½

30

40

Beans, fresh lima

Hot pack

1

Bring to a boil

40

50

Beans, snap

Raw pack

½

20

25

Beets

Hot pack

½

15

30

35

Broccoli

Hot pack

1

3

30

35

Brussels sprouts

Hot pack

1

3

30

35

Cabbage

Hot pack

1

3

45

55

Carrots

Raw pack

1

25

30

Cauliflower

Hot pack

1

3

30

35

Celery

Hot pack

1

3

30

35

Cream style corn

Hot pack

1

Bring to a boil

85

Pints only

Whole kernel corn

Raw pack

1

55

Pints only

Whole kernel corn

Hot pack

1

Bring to a boil

55

Pints only

Eggplant

Hot  pack

1

5

30

40

Mushrooms

Hot pack

½

Boil 5 minutes

45

Okra

Hot pack

½

1

25

40

Parsnips

Hot pack

1

3

30

35

Peas

Raw pack

1

40

40

Peas

Hot pack

1

Bring to a boil

40

40

Peppers

Hot pack

1

3

35

Pints only

Whole potatoes

Hot pack

½

10

35

40

Cubed potatoes

Hot pack

½

2

35

40

Soybeans

Hot pack

1

Bring to a boil

55

65

Spinach and other greens

Hot pack

½

Steam 10 minutes

70

90

Summer squash (such as
zucchini)

Hot pack

½

Bring to a boil

30

40

Sweet potatoes

Dry pack

1

20-30

65

90

Sweet potatoes

Hot pack

1

20

65

90


Boiling Water Processing Vegetables

Even if you don’t have a pressure canner, you can make your own pickles and canned tomatoes by processing in boiling water. Use the same instructions as for pressure canning, using sanitized jars and lids, except in a boiling water bath with water that covers the lid by at least 2 inches. Follow the recommendations in the table below to guarantee safe and delicious tomato products!

Timetable for Boiling Water Processing Tomatoes

Produce

Pack

Pint Processing Time

Quart Processing Time

Headroom(in inches)

Tomato juice

Hot

35

40

½

Tomato juice and flesh

Hot

35

40

½

 

Crushed tomatoes

Hot

35

45

½

Tomato sauce

Hot

35

40

¼

Whole or halved tomatoes in
juice

Raw or hot

85

85

½

Whole or halved tomatoes,
no liquid

Raw

85

85

½

 


Recipes

The following recipes include the most popular vegetable dishes for canning. Feel free to adjust spices and flavors (but not acidity or processing times) to taste. Enjoy your vegetable canning adventures!

Basic Canned Tomatoes

Ingredients

  • 8 quarts peeled and chopped tomatoes
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  •  1 tablespoon salt

Directions

Gently toss tomatoes with lemon juice and salt, then fill jars to 1/4-inch of tops.
Run a slim, non-metal tool down along the insides of jars to release any air bubbles.
Add additional paste, if necessary, to within 1/4-inch of tops.
Wipe tops and threads of jars with damp clean cloth.
Put on lids and screw bands as manufacturer directs.
Process in a boiling water bath for 45 minutes.

Variations
Cook tomatoes over medium-low heat until completely broken down to make tomato sauce, then can as for Basic Canned Tomatoes. Up to 25% of the contents of the sauce may contain herbs or other cooked vegetables, such as roasted peppers, sautéed minced onions, or garlic.
To make a tomato paste, cook tomatoes over medium-low heat until broken down and the volume is reduced by half. Strain through cheesecloth, then can as for Basic Canned Tomatoes.

Classic Dill Pickles

Ingredients

  • 25 pickling cucumbers, 2-3 inches long
  • 4 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
  • 2 tablespoons celery or fennel seeds
  • 4 sprigs fresh dill
  • 1 cup pickling salt, dissolved in 8 cups water

Directions
Wash cucumbers thoroughly. Soak 24 hours in brine. Drain and pat dry.
Bring vinegar, sugar, and spices to a boil.
Add cucumbers and cook 5 minutes over medium heat.
Pack cucumbers and spices in hot, sterilized jars.
Cover with cooking liquid and seal. Wait a month before opening. Makes 8 cups.


Dilly Beans

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds high quality whole green beans
  • 2 teaspoons crushed dried hot red pepper
  • 4 teaspoons dried dill seed
  • 7 cloves of peeled fresh garlic
  • 5 cups vinegar
  • 5 cups water
  • ½ cup picking salt

Directions
Wash beans thoroughly, remove stems and tips, and cut them as uniformly as possible to allow them to stand upright in pint canning jars, coming to the shoulder of the jar.
Have jars clean and very hot, and lids and sealers ready in scalding water.
In each jar, place ½ tsp of dill seed, one garlic clove, and ¼ tsp of crushed hot red pepper. Pack beans upright in jars, leaving one inch of headroom.
Heat the water, vinegar, and salt together. When the mixture boils, pour it over the beans, filling each jar to ½ inch from the top.
Run a knife down and around to remove trapped air, adjust lids, and process in a 185°F bath for ten minutes after the water in the canner returns to simmer. Remove jars and complete seals if necessary.
Makes 7 pints.

Note: if you substitute ground cayenne pepper for the crushed hot red pepper, use only 1/8 tsp per jar (or prepare for a fiery treat!) Wait at least two weeks to allow the beans to develop their full flavor.


Peter’s Pickled Peppers

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds hot peppers (such as serrano, habanero, jalapeno, or a blend) cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 6 cups vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 medium onion, diced

Directions
Combine the hot peppers in a large pot. Add the vinegar, water, garlic, and onion.
Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes.
Ladle cooked peppers into sterile jars and fill to the top with the remaining liquid, leaving ¼ inch headspace, and lid.
Process in a water bath for 10 to 15 minutes.
Refrigerate jars after opening.


Watermelon Pickles
Choose thick sections of rind for this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 8 cups watermelon rind
  • ½ cup pickling salt
  • 4 cups cold water
  • 1 ½ tablespoons whole cloves
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups water

Directions
Peel off the skin and trim off any remains of pink flesh. Cut into one inch cubes. Dissolve salt in cold water and pour it over rind cubes to cover (add more water if needed). Let stand 5 to 6 hours. Drain and rinse well.
Cover the rind cubes with fresh water and cook until barely tender, no more than ten minutes, erring on the side of crispness, then drain.
Combine sugar, vinegar, and water; add cloves tied in a cloth bag; bring mixture to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer for five minutes. Pour over rind cubes and let stand overnight. In the morning, bring to boiling and cook until rind is translucent but not at all mushy, about ten minutes.
Remove spice bag and pack cubes in hot, sterilized pint jars. Add boiling syrup, leaving ½ inch of headroom; adjust lids. Process in a 185° F water bath for ten minutes. Remove jars and complete seals if necessary. Makes 4 pints.


Antipasto

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cauliflower chunks
  • 1 cup broccoli chunks
  • 2 zucchini, cut in sticks
  • 2 carrots, cut in sticks
  • 2 celery sticks, roughly sliced
  • 2 medium onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup pickling salt
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 2 hot peppers (such as banana peppers), chopped
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds

Directions
In a large bowl, arrange vegetables in layers, sprinkling salt between each layer.
Add 6 cups of water. Cover bowl with plastic film and place a weight on top to prevent the vegetables from floating. Keep the bowl in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, drain and rinse under cold water for 2 minutes and drain again.
Combine 2 cups water with vinegar and sugar.
Dissolve sugar over low heat.
Divide garlic, hot peppers, and mustard seeds among the jars. Pack with vegetables.
Cover with sugared vinegar, leaving 1 ¼ inches head space. Seal and process 20 minutes in boiling water or 5 minutes in a pressure cooker.
Wait three weeks before tasting. Makes 10 cups.

 

The Meaty Pantry: Everything You Need to Know About Canning Meats

All-American-Pressure-Canner-21-qtAlthough most people hear the word “canning” and think “jams and pickles,” the art of home canning extends to all sorts of foodstuffs, including a wide variety of meat and seafood. So if you’re short on freezer space and don’t care for jerky, never fear: canning help is here!

The most popular meats for canning include beef, lamb, pork, and chicken. They aren’t the only meats you may can, though—domestic rabbits and small game also can well, and use the same simple method as chicken and other poultry.

The largest challenge in canning meat lies in the fact that meat is one of the best breeding grounds for bacteria. It’s essential to use high-quality, fresh meat and to handle it quickly and in extremely clean conditions. In addition, you should only can meat that comes from a known source—and that doesn’t mean knowing the name of your grocery store manager! It is essential to know that the source of your meat was raised in healthy conditions and that the meat was handled properly and with the highest regard to sanitation. In most cases, this means growing and slaughtering your own domestic animals, or purchasing meat from a farmer who you know and trust and whose operation you are familiar with.

If you are canning wild game, only use meat from a freshly killed animal that appeared perfectly healthy.

The Importance of Pressure Canning Meat and Seafood

All meat and seafood absolutely must be pressure canned, rather than processed in a boiling water bath. Because it takes only one spoonful from one jar of poisoned food to cause serious illness or death, the pressure canner may be the most important investment you make.

All pressure canners work according to the same principle. The pan has a tight sealing lid with a regulator. When a small amount of water (usually 1 to 3 inches) is heated in the canner, it is converted to steam, which builds up pressure and reaches temperatures substantially higher than boiling. At 10 to 15 pounds of pressure, the temperature is 240° to 250° F. Safety features maintain pressure at reasonable levels and auto-release if the pressure becomes too high.

Pressure Canning Step by Step:

  1. After packing Mason jars and fitting them with lids and screwbands, put the rack in the canner and add 2 to 3 inches of water. Then place jars on the rack. If you like, you may fill the rack before placing it in the canner. Put the lid on the canner and fasten it securely.
  2. Open the petcock or remove the weight. Heat on high until steam flows out.
  3. Continue to heat on high for 10 minutes before closing the petcock or placing the weight on the vent port. During the next 3 to 5 minutes, the pressure will build.
  4. When the dial gauge shows the recommended amount of pressure, or when the petcock begins jiggling or rocking, set the timer for the time specified in your recipe. At high altitudes, increase the pressure ½ pound for each 1,000 feet above sea level.
  5. Maintain a temperature at or just above the specified gauge pressure. Weighted gauges will jiggle 2 or 3 times per minute or rock slowly, depending on the brand. Avoid large variations in temperature, which may cause liquid to be forced from jars,
    jeopardizing the seal.
  6. When the time is up, turn off the heat, remove canner from burner if possible, and let it depressurize. Do not use cold water to speed depressurization and avoid opening the vent port. Let the canner sit 30 minutes if loaded with pints, or 45 minutes with quarts. Some models cool more quickly and have vent locks that indicate when pressure is normal.
  7.  When pressure has returned to normal, remove the weight or open the petcock. Let canner sit for two minutes before unfastening and removing the lid. Keep your face away from the canner to avoid escaping steam.
  8. Using a jar lifter, remove the jars and place them on a folded towel, allowing at least 1 inch of air to circulate between them.

The Importance of Cooking Meat and Seafood

Canned meat should also always be cooked. Although it has been a popular American practice in recent history to preserve meat by raw canning, it is not possible to guarantee the safety of meats packed raw.

It is always a better choice to freeze, rather than can, raw or undercooked meat. It is absolutely necessary to use a pressure canner when canning any kind of meat.

Process your cans at 10 pounds per square inch at sea level or 15 pounds per square inch at altitude. This process will destroy any and all bacteria and ensure that your meat is safe to eat. To keep your meat from spending too much time in warm air, work with a small amount at a time while storing the rest in the refrigerator.

As with any canned food, inspect your cans for signs of spoilage before you enjoy the contents.

Signs for Spoilage of Meat Products Include:

  • A broken seal
  • An “off” odor
  • Seepage around the seal
  • Small bubbles in the food
  • A spurt of liquid when you open the container
  • Yeasty or cloudy liquid
  • Mold (even the tiniest amount!)

 Tips For Canning Red Meats

Prime cuts of beef, lamb, pork, veal, and large game should be canned in the largest pieces you can fit in your containers. To can these large pieces, follow these steps:

  • Wipe the pieces of raw meat with a clean, damp cloth. Remove any bones or fat that is visible on the surface of the meat.
  • Place the pieces in a large, shallow pan with ½ cup of water.
  • Cook over medium heat, turning often, until pieces are cooked medium well.
  • Pack meat in straight-sided jars. Add boiling liquid (meat stock or vegetable stock are good choices) until jar is full, leaving an inch of headroom.
  • Process at 10 pounds per square inch at 240° F. Pints should be processed for 75 minutes and quarts for 90 minutes.

Most organ meats do not can well, with the exception of tongue. To can tongue, soak the meat in cold water for 4-6 hours, scrubbing the tongue and changing the water every two hours. Boil the tongues in a large pot. Skim off the foam that initially rises to the top, then lightly salt the water and continue to cook until the tongue is done medium well. Remove from water, rinse with cool water, then remove and skin or other inedible parts. Pack as for other pieces of meat.

Tips For Canning Poultry

Poultry is canned slightly differently from the red meats listed above. The process for canning poultry includes chicken, turkey, goose, and duck, as well as domestic rabbits, wild birds, and other small game. Unlike with red meat, you may leave the skin on. Pack raw pieces into a large pan, cover with chicken or vegetable stock, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook until meat is medium-well done. Pack meat with broth as for red meat, above.

You may also can the giblets of your poultry. If you have enough liver to process and pack separately from your other giblets, do so. Use canned giblets in meat sauces, gravies, or meat pies. To pack gizzards and hearts, clean and trim off any gristle or fat. Cut gizzards and large hearts in half. Boil in broth until done medium well. To pack livers, first remove any fat and cut away the gall sac and any connecting tissue between the lobes. Cook over medium heat in broth until done medium well—they will cook much more quickly than other giblets, so watch them closely.

Tips For Canning Seafood

It is also possible to can many kinds of seafood. Most fish and shellfish have very low acidity, which means it is essential to only can them with a properly used pressure canner, just as with other types of meat. Freshness is also of the essence when canning seafood, as even a couple hours at room temperature will turn fish unfit to can.

Salmon, lake trout, whitefish, mackerel, mullet, and shad can both be raw-packed, although they should be brined prior to canning. To make a brine, dissolve ¾ cup of pickling salt in a gallon of cold water. Immerse your pieces of fish in the brine, weighing them down if necessary, for one full hour. Drain the pieces but do not rinse them. Other fish and shellfish (aside from clams) should be precooked to medium well before being packed. ½ pint jars should be processed at 10 pounds and 240°F for 70 minutes.

Clams are a special case. Clams should be purchased (or dug) fresh and alive. Once brought home, hold your clams in clean, cool saltwater (not sea water!) made from ¼ cup pickling salt to 1 gallon of water for 24 hours, then steamed open, removed from their shells, and acid blanched in a boiling solution of 2 teaspoons of citric acid powder dissolved in a gallon of water for 2 minutes. Pack and process steamed and acid blanched clams in ½ pint jars at 10 pounds and 240°F for 60 minutes.

A Final Note

When proper procedure and safety precautions are followed, canning meats is an efficient, productive, and delicious way to store food for the future. So be safe, follow directions, and above all, enjoy your adventures in canning!

Read our detailed review on the All American Pressure Canner Cooker. We consider it to be the best on the market and it is manufactured in the US.