The kids and I went out to a great little place called Sweet Berry Farm. It’s a pick-your-own kind of place and right now strawberries are ripe. We had a great time and picked nearly five pounds! After we got home and we ate our fill, I thought it might be fun to make and can some strawberry jam. I have the berries already, so how hard can this be? I picked up some pectin, a canning accessories kit (you know, a jar picker-uppper thingie, a something-or-other stick, some other do-dads that I’m not sure about), and a dozen 4 ounce glass jars with lids and rings.
Since I’ve never canned anything or tried to preserve any kind of food, I did a little search online, and wouldn’t you know it, there is a National Center for Home Food Preservation! I was very excited about this website and I suspected it would supply me with everything I needed to know about canning. It didn’t let me down. The website first said that if I was new to canning, I needed to read the USDA’s Principles of Home Canning.
So I read it.
I AM NOT CANNING ANYTHING!
Holy Moses, that document has me convinced that I will grow Clostridium botulinum and everyone who eats my jam will get botulism and die a horrible death.
I’m also thinking that making and canning jam at 10 PM might be overly ambitious, so maybe I’ll try it this weekend.
In the meantime, I have some cute berry farm photos. (There are also goats on this farm, but sadly they’re not part of the pick-you-own scheme.)