I was reading your article, “Canning 101” in the archive and noticed that you said you can use a water bath canner and you don’t have to use a pressure canner. I have heard there are certain things you have to pressure can. I am getting a new pressure canner or going to try for one at a yard sale but until then I am using my water bath. My question then is, can you use a water bath canner to can everything? Even meats?
Please go back and read the article again. I NEVER SAID OR SAY that you can use a water bath canner for everything. Only that it’s a good place for people to begin canning. ALL vegetables, meats and fish MUST BE processed in a pressure canner for safe processing. To use a water bath canner for all foods is playing Russian roulette with your family’s lives! Please pick up a pressure canner and a good canning book so your family will be eating great tasting, safe food. — Jackie
Canning previously cooked sausage
My husband and I found Backwoods Home Magazine last year and we love your column. We ordered your books recently. Although we are in our 60’s and retired, we are new to Pressure Canning. We have done a lot of Water Bath Canning in past years, but got away from putting up our own food for awhile after the kids left. We are excited about expanding our garden and adding the Pressure Canning factor, now.
We have a favorite Chicken/Maple Organic Frozen Sausage that we purchase on a regular basis. It is precooked, then frozen. It has to be pan heated and I like to brown it a bit more. We were wondering if it is possible to Pressure Can previously cooked and frozen sausage and how one would go about doing that? My husband asked me this question and I told him I would “Ask Jackie.” I did a search in your blog search engine, but couldn’t find anything that matched for an answer.
Yes, you can home can this sausage. The question is, how good it will turn out, to your own taste. So I’d advise doing a small batch, then “sacrificing” a jar for your taste test. Some pre-cooked meats tend to get a bit tougher than many others. It’s just something you’ll have to try. I’d heat the sausage (patties, I assume?) and then pack them in wide mouth pint or half pint jars. I’d ladle a light broth over them, either made from pan drippings from lightly browning in oil or a broth made from powdered soup stock base, of your choice. Another option is boiling water to retain the original flavor. Continue by processing at 75 minutes (pints and half pints) at 10 pounds pressure. If you live at an altitude above 1,000 feet, consult your canning book for directions on increasing your pressure to suit your altitude.
It’s great to hear that you’ve started pressure canning. It not only is a great way to fill your pantry with tons of foods that you’ll love, but it’s a great hobby, as well. Canning is such FUN! — Jackie