What to Cook for Dinner?
Well, these beans weren’t exactly from our garden. A couple of weeks ago I had my friend give me a call offering home-grown green beans. Well, how could I turn that offer down. Free food is always something I will receive, after all if we can’t use it, I can always share with the neighbors.
I usually will freeze the green beans we pick out of our garden. I usually will harvest a bowl or two at a time and it always seems like so much trouble to get out the canning jars and pressure canner to do such a small amount of beans at a time. So when I received a big box of green beans I knew I would need to can them.
My mom used to can green beans each year, with beans we would u-pick or purchase from a farm. I remember as a child sitting and working on those green beans for hours. Now I am sure my mom did most of the work but my sister and myself would break the beans into the right lengths for the canning jars.
I also remember my mom wanting us out of the kitchen while the pressure canning was going. She would always jokingly say, “it could blow stay out of the way”. Now that I am grown, I am sure she was saying that to keep us out of the way while she was working with the hot stove, jars and canner.
My friend brought the box of beans over and I started prepping the jars and washing and breaking the beans. It was a lot of beans to do. My kids would have helped but I let them play instead. Since snapping beans was never a fun task for me.
Canning beans is really fairly simple, no syrup to make just clean, snap, stuff into the jars with a little water and salt. Then just process in the pressure canner. I always need to babysit my pressure canner to make sure I maintain the right pressure for the length of time needed.
So I set up a table and chair next to the stove and worked on blogging while watching the pressure. I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly the time went by while monitoring the pressure. But I wasn’t prepared for the hour it took for the canner to cool and depressurized so I could unload it.
I ended up doing 3 canner loads of green beans. Which took me about 5 hours. Luckily most of that time was spent waiting for the pressure to come down.
So we now have 21 jars of green beans for this year. I have decided, I am leaving my canner out, so as I get beans from our garden I can process them in the canner this year. Since I discovered most of the time spent was waiting on the canner to release its pressure. I can always run one load and do other things while it cools down.
If you are interested in canning green beans too, here is a great tutorial on how.
This post is linked up at An Oregon Cottage