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Canning & Preserving For Dummies [Paperback]

Karen Ward
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

April 25 2003 For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)
Thought about canning and preserving your own food? Maybe you haven’t given it a try because you believed it would be too involved. The truth is, today’s methods and procedures for home-canning, freezing, and drying food are simpler and easier than ever. And now, with this easy-to-follow book, you’ll get the information you need to can and preserve food safely.

Canning and Preserving For Dummies makes putting up fruits and vegetables in your home as easy as pie. Featuring up-to-date safety guidelines and simple, fun techniques, this practical, friendly guide is for anyone who wants to enjoy delicious, do-it-yourself treats year-round—or even give them as gifts! You get all the juicy details on:

  • Water-bath canning
  • Pressure canning
  • Freezing
  • Drying
  • Finding the right supplies and equipment

Canning and Preserving For Dummies also features yummy, eas y-to-do recipes that include preparation times, cooking times, processing times, and the yield you should expect from your efforts. You’ll see how to make everything from apple butter, pear-raspberry jam, and bread and butter pickles to chicken stock, tomatillo salsa, and white chili. You’ll also discover how to:

  • Know the acidity level of your food
  • Pick and prepare fresh fruit
  • Line your jars with liquid
  • Create jams, jellies, and marmalades
  • Preserve chutneys, relishes, and sauces
  • Pickle vegetables
  • Combine foods for convenience
  • Select food for freezing
  • Protect the life of your dried food

Providing troubleshooting tips for home-canned creations, sources for locating equipment suppliers, a metric conversion guide, and definitions of preserving terms, Canning and Preserving For Dummies has just what you need to fill your pantry with savory homemade fare.

Product Details

Product Description

From the Back Cover

Juicy details on making your own jams and jellies, canned veggies, and dried snacks

Enjoy delicious, do-it-yourself treats year-round – and they make great gifts!

Putting up fruits and vegetables in your home is as easy as pie with this step-by-step guide to canning and preserving. With easy-to-follow recipes, up-to-date safety guidelines, and simple, fun techniques, you’ll find everything you need to fill your pantry with savory, homemade fare.

The Dummies Way

  • Explanations in plain English
  • "Get in, get out" information
  • Icons and other navigational aids
  • Tear-out cheat sheet
  • Top ten lists
  • A dash of humor and fun

About the Author

Karen Ward is a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals, a home economist, and an instructor in the art of canning.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Over the years, because of our busy lifestyles and the convenience of refrigeration and supermarkets, the art of canning and preserving has declined and almost been forgotten. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I've read this cookbook cover to cover, sampled some recipes, and I'm impressed! Karen Ward took all the guess work and concerns I had out of both canning and preserving. The balance of taste in her recipes is extraordinary. Her Pear Chutney's the best I've ever had (and I've had plenty). My husband adores her bread and Butter Pickles! A great cookbook to have on hand to make holiday food gifts, too.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Would not recommend March 4 2014
By Krystal
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Info needed is spread all around the book. I have to bookmark the pages on prepping my work area, the section providing step-by-step instructions for canning and the recipe I'm following, and then flip back and forth between the three. Not practical in the least. The recipes are also rather bland, with few that I would actually consider making. However, the introduction and background info, as well as the reasons for all the steps, are very good.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good overview of the basics May 26 2009
This is a very clear overview of the basics ways to can and preserve food. If you've already done any canning, you probably won't learn a lot of new things but it's useful to have a single source that summarizes the key thiings to know. I would have preferred a few more basic "key" recipes as these can then be used as a basis for experimentation with flavourings and such. For example, there is no recipe for dill pickles. But these are available on the internet and in general cookbooks like Joy of Cooking, so this really isn't a big deal. A fair chunk of the book is devoted to pressure canning and as I (and most people I suspect) don't have a pressure canner, I would have preferred less info on that method and more on the others. But these are small gripes ... and I definitely recommend the book for anyone new to canning or who has picked up bits and pieces over the years but wants a more systematic reference.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great for the beginner May 10 2011
As I am a complete newbie to both waterbath and pressure canner, I was very happy to find this book. It's light on recipes, but great as a reference for method. It takes you right from what to look for in a good canner and all the safety information right up to how to step by step can just about any fruit, vegetable or meat, and which method to use for each. With this book as my guide I filled a full bookshelf with home canned goods last year, and I still crack it open when canning just about anything. Now I've just got to find a good canning recipe book to go with it.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  41 reviews
100 of 103 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes Canning and Preserving a breeze! Tasty recipes, too! April 9 2004
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I've read this cookbook cover to cover, sampled some recipes, and I'm impressed! Karen Ward took all the guess work and concerns I had out of both canning and preserving. The balance of taste in her recipes is extraordinary. Her Pear Chutney's the best I've ever had (and I've had plenty). My husband adores her bread and Butter Pickles! A great cookbook to have on hand to make holiday food gifts, too.
57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anyone can learn how to can. Sept. 29 2005
By One Mad Monkey - Published on Amazon.com
I have NEVER canned anything before in my entire life, and I decided to try it. I was extremely apprehensive but bought all the ingredients/equipment necessary. I read this book one time, and followed the directions. VIOLA!!! I had perfectly canned jam. I must add though, if you order any kind of water bath canner set, you will probably get a free Ball Canning Book which states the same information.
57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Youth Is Wasted On The Young".....Great Book Sept. 6 2009
By John Thomas... - Published on Amazon.com
When I was a kid I spent summers at my grandmothers house where she put me, as well as all my other cousins under her care, to work in her big garden. We spent about half the summer cultivating the likes of corn, beans, onions, tomatos, broccoli, and cauliflower, as well as fruits like blueberries, grapes, and strawberries to name just a few. Everything had to be cut, cleaned, spiced, and preserved in a large room in the basement. The work involved didn't mean much to me back then but a lot of time taken away from more important things like going to the movies and playing baseball. That is until the cold winter months came along when we ate supper at my grandmothers and were treated to the most delicious meals from the freshest produce I was to ever enjoy. We even got to enjoy our salad with genuine home made vinegar with garlic that my grandmother made herself as well. Home spun meals of that delicious caliber were to never really come around again in my life. Unfortunately when I got older and was no longer required to be under my grandmothers care I drifted away from her and never had the opportunity to either learn, or remember much of anything from those wonderful days of my youth.

Now all grown up and working from home finds me wishing I had paid more attention to all the knowledge and lore my grandmother was so free with that was all but ignored or forgotten over the years. The "dummy" series of books are a collection of which I own quite a few of. Everything from weather to bird feeding. I have always found them to be plainly written, very well researched, and even humorous in many cases. They all seem to have the same home spun quality to them regardless of what the subject matter happens to be. "Canning and Preserving" is certainly not one to be an exception. Anyone that is planning to grow and preserve their own veggies and fruit should read this book. It is wonderfully written, very thorough, and above all is presented in such a way that it begins with the assumption that you barely know what canning and preserving is. It offers a wealth of tips, procedure, growing and spicing suggestions, the hardware you will both need and can manage without, and even recipes that one would tend to never encounter anywhere else. It is quite simply the most comprehensive book I have encountered as to canning and preserving. If you're like me and not only want to make the best preserves possible, or are just interested in not making a mistake and poisoning yourself, by all means buy this book. It is a wealth of instruction, tips, lore, and wit and wisdom for those of us that spent more of our time chasing butterflies in the summers of our youth, than paying attention to what would later become invaluable in life...
196 of 226 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Despite errors and hysteria an OK Beginner Book Aug. 28 2006
By Lancaster Co. Canner - Published on Amazon.com
Being a former research scientist, it is perhaps unfair to critique a book for beginners. The recipes, trouble shooting and sources chapters are great. You will never get sick following this book.

Corections: One piece caps designed for home canning of jams are fine. All jars designed for canning may not be used. Those manufactured prior to WWII will break if used for pressure canning due to internal stress created by movement of the high soda glass over time. Used tomato sauce jars that use a standard cap are fine. Regular green beans (formerly called string beans) have not required destringing for 40 years. The jar lifter is gripping the jar where it will slip. Do not use wet dishtowels to wipe the lids. Your toilet bowl contains less bacteria. Use a paper towel. 2 piece (dome) lids on higher silica jars were used throughout WWII in Victory Gardens. I still use my mother's made in May, 1943. Do not bury your spoiled low acid food in deep soil or go through the detoxification process. Your sewer authority will probably tell you to dump it down the drain. If you do not trust their advice, take the food to your toxic waste drop off. If you have followed the directions as to pressure and time (you may not cheat), you do not need to boil all your canned low acid foods. Eat your food before canning the same veggies next year (a problem in WWII). Always can with a friend(s), especially the first time. It's more fun that way and safer should there ever be a rare problem (like a sticking valve in the MIRRO canner - tap with a wooden spoon and get your husband to fix it later). Botulism bacteria are killed at 212 degrees (actually 10 min. @ 80C according to the CDC). It's the spores that require 240F for the times indicated. In nearly 40 years of canning and raising three children from our large garden and orchard, we have never had food poisoning. Just remember, cleanliness is next to godlineness.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I went from Burning Toast to Winning Blue Ribbons at The State Fair! Oct. 8 2007
By Brian E. Nahodil - Published on Amazon.com
I have always fantasized about canning and preserving my own locally grown garden vegetables and fruits. One day on a lark of what my partner called "Pure Insanity" I bought a Water based canner and equipment to put my dreams into reality. I would have panicked had I not reviewed and purchased this book the day before.

In only a matter of a few hours I read the book from cover to cover and felt like an expert. Soon thereafter when I found a wonderful source of locally grown cucumbers I "canned" 8 pints of 'Bread and Butter pickles' from a recipe provided in this book. Three weeks later I was the recipient of a Blue Ribbon at a local fair for my "Prize Winning Recipe". I was astonished! They will never know the secret of my success was "The Dummies Guide" but I will never forget. I've since gone on to do Corn Relish, Apple Butter, Lime Pickles, and tonight I shall can Green Beans and Carrots.

This is the book that will bring success to the otherwise accident and disaster prone "cook". Don't start this hobby without it!
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