Sunday, November 9, 2008

Revving up the Canner!

Before you put the top on the canner, take a quick look through the steam vent.  Just to make sure it clear and open and not clogged.

Put the top on the canner and lock it into place.
Turn the heat up to HIGH.  You're waiting for steam to start really streaming through the vent pipe.  This picture is probably impossible to see the steam.  But it's there, I promise.

Set the timer for 10 minutes to steam out the canner.  This is to really fill the canner full of steam which will of course produce the pressure once the weight is put on.
After the ten minutes, place the weight or pressure regulator on the vent pipe.
On the Presto canners, there is a pressure gauge that will pop up to indicate the canner is full of pressure.  If the gauge is UP, don't play with the weight or try to open the canner.

You'll process the meat 75 minutes at 10 lbs pressure for PINTS.  90 minutes at 10 lbs pressure for QUARTS.  There will be quite a bit of heating up time and cooling down time.  Start timing once the pressure gauge show 10 lbs.  Or, if you don't have a gauge, when the weight starts to rock.  Note:  10 lbs pressure is for 0-1000 feet altitude.  Make sure you know your altitude an adjust pressure accordingly.  I recommend purchasing the most recent Ball Blue Book of Canning and Preserving.

For a non-gauge canner, you'll want your weight to rock gently with a consistent movement.  If there's too much time in between rocks, increase the heat.  If the rocking starts to get violent, decrease the heat.
Don't mess with the canner while there is still pressure in it.  Turn off the heat after the processing time is done.  Let it cool down on it's own.

Once the gauge shows 0 and the pressure indicator is flush against the canner, you can open the canner.  Just remember, it's HOT!

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