Canning in an autoclave
My SIL found me a nice All American canner at a yard sale, or so we thought. It seems it may be a sterilizer. It does not have a weight, it has an autoclave. Can I still pressure can in it?
St. Charles, Michigan
If this is the old large All American autoclave that sits on a burner, it’s probably just like mine which I canned with for more than 30 years and still works fine. It has a gauge and two petcocks on top. You can call the company at 920-682-8627 for verification. Some folks claim you shouldn’t can in an autoclave but I’m sure it depends on the autoclave; I wouldn’t can in an electric autoclave. You should have the gauge checked to be sure it’s accurate. Many County Extension offices will do this for little or no charge. Remember to use a rack on the bottom. My autoclave/canner has a separate solid aluminum kettle that drops down into the canner body, holding the jars off of the bottom of the canner. Without the rack, you will break the bottoms out of jars due to the intense heat on the bottom of the jars. — Jackie
In the process of moving my canned goods from my old root cellar to my new one I discovered that a number of my jars of lard, which I had canned this year, had not stayed sealed. I usually wait about 24 hours to remove the rings after canning. The lard appears to be fine. Is it likely to have gone bad? Can I remelt it and can it again? It was really nice lard and I hate to lose it.
I know it is hard but it won’t be long before the doctor lifts your restrictions and you can go “full tilt” again.
Your lard is probably fine but I would re-can it. Open the jars and sniff it. If it’s gone rancid I wouldn’t re-can it. But if it smells fine, just scoop it out into a kettle, melt it until quite hot (about 275 degrees), then pour out into hot, clean jars. Wipe the rims well with hot water and a clean dish cloth, put a hot, previously simmered lid in place and screw down the rings. You’ll be good to go.
Isn’t it exciting moving to a new pantry?
I’m glad to get rid of the gallbladder but it IS hard after most of the pain’s gone NOT to lift! Soon though… — Jackie