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BHM's Homesteading & Self-Reliance Forum
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Go Back   BHM Forum > Homesteading > Food > Canning/Preserving

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  #1  
Old 07-08-2010, 05:54 PM
JulieBaby Female JulieBaby is offline
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Default Pressure canning on outdoor propane burner?

We have an electric stove, so my husband and I purchased a three-burner propane cooker for emergencies and for canning. My pressure canner says not to use it on one of these. Has anyone done this anyway? I don't know if this is just one of those CYA moves from the manufacturer or if there are no conditions (a careful adult attending to the pot constantly, etc.) under which the pressure canner can be used safely outdoors. Any ideas? I am envisioning glass shrapnel, hot food, and boiling water shooting all over my front porch.
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  #2  
Old 07-08-2010, 06:42 PM
TEX Female TEX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieBaby View Post
We have an electric stove, so my husband and I purchased a three-burner propane cooker for emergencies and for canning. My pressure canner says not to use it on one of these. Has anyone done this anyway? I don't know if this is just one of those CYA moves from the manufacturer or if there are no conditions (a careful adult attending to the pot constantly, etc.) under which the pressure canner can be used safely outdoors. Any ideas? I am envisioning glass shrapnel, hot food, and boiling water shooting all over my front porch.

What would be the difference between canning on a propane cooker outside and using a stove inside that ran off propane??????
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Old 07-08-2010, 06:48 PM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Julie, as long as you use common sense and the burner can be turned down low enough to maintain correct pressure, you'll be fine using your 3 burner cooker.

Just remember you're dealing with higher BTU output than most home cookstoves. So, where your canning directions may say start heating on HIGH, that's for the kitchen stove. You may need to use MEDIUM on your propane burner.

If you haven't already done any pressure canning, I'd suggest that you do a few batches on your kitchen stove. Learn how long it takes that stove to heat up to the point you exhaust the canner. Then, use that as a guide to set the heat level on the propane burner to give you approximately the same time.

One other thing, if you find that you can't lower the flame enough to hold a steady pressure of 10 lbs (adjusted for your altitude) a flame tamer may be needed. This is placed on the burner, under the canner, and helps to dispurse the heat. There are several designs and they are available from many places that specilize in cookware. If memory serves you can also find them at Amazon.

BTW, you won't have flying canner pieces and glass flying all over your yard. :-) There's a pressure relief valve that will blow, if the pressure gets too high. Not something that you want to happen, as it will spray steam and boiling water. But, it keeps the canner from "blowing up", the way they did before those valves were invented.

Hope this helps. Good luck with your canning!

Lee
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Old 07-08-2010, 06:51 PM
cinok Male cinok is offline
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Some of the outdoor burners such as turkey fryers have a very high BTU output so it must be regulated carefully . Some of the 3 burner models are not as high has others, lok and see in the owners manulaor even on the stoce it self for burner output.
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:28 PM
JulieBaby Female JulieBaby is offline
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I appreciate your responses. I've been canning for 20+ years on my electric stove, including pressure canning, but I've never canned on a gas stove. I know these outdoor models throw off a lot more heat than a regular kitchen propane stove, so I just didn't know what to expect. Thanks for the input!
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:31 PM
debbie-bountiful Female debbie-bountiful is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulieBaby View Post
We have an electric stove, so my husband and I purchased a three-burner propane cooker for emergencies and for canning. My pressure canner says not to use it on one of these. Has anyone done this anyway? I don't know if this is just one of those CYA moves from the manufacturer or if there are no conditions (a careful adult attending to the pot constantly, etc.) under which the pressure canner can be used safely outdoors. Any ideas? I am envisioning glass shrapnel, hot food, and boiling water shooting all over my front porch.
had no idea it said not too. That is how I can so I do not steam up the kitchen. All my water bath/ pressure canning is done outside on a propane cooker. Has been for years.
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Old 07-10-2010, 02:32 AM
cartershan Female cartershan is offline
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Hi JulieBaby, my propane cooker says not to use for canning as well. I was very leary to try it at first, but its been working great so far. If anything, I have more trouble adjusting for weather, the least wind will throw your heat off alittle. I've gotten used to it sordof, I've learned how to adjust. Still learning how to adjust!
Hope it works out for you, Shannon
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Old 07-10-2010, 09:22 AM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Julie, since you're an experienced canner, you won't have any material problems adjusting to using a burner. My suggestion is to do a trial run by canning some water for your emergency water supply. That'll help you get the "feel" for it without having to prep food.

Yes, Shannon is right in that the wind can be a problem. Sometimes you can rig up a wind break to help with that. Look around your place for sheltered spots. In our case, if the wind is from the west, north, or northwest, I can open the door to the lawn mower shed. Then, place the burner in front of the open door. That's really a sheltered nook.

If you have room to store a piece of plywood, that can be propped against a vehicle to offer a wind break (and protect the vehicle from the heat). Prop it against a couple of trees, or a tree and something else to support it. Set it against the posts on the backporch or carport.

Tarps can also be rigged to offer windbreaks. Just be careful with those that they don't get too close to the heat. An alternative to a tarp is a heavy duty shower curtain liner. Hang from hooks or from a clothes line wire. Be sure to weigh down the bottom so it doesn't blow against the cooker. The liner is good for light breezes, but I wouldn't use that method if it's really windy. (The hooks will tear out of the holes at the top, if weighted enough to keep it from flapping against the cooker.)

For backyard canning, the ideal windbreak, IMHO, is 3 pieces of plywood that are hinged together like a folding screen. It's setup to form a U shape around the burner. Pull the hinge pins to make it easy to store between uses. And, when not canning or using it for a wind screen, the plywood becomes temporary tables for all sorts of additional uses. (Picnic tables, crafts tables, workbenches, etc.

Finally, if the wind is too high, switch to indoors for canning, as it's important to maintain a steady pressure. For one thing, I've learned that when holding the pressure steady, I have fewer jars that don't seal. Plus, there's always the risk of having to re-start timing if the pressure drops too low during the process. That's the pits if it happens near the end of a 90 minute run.

Just some thoughts this morning that may be useful.

Lee
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  #9  
Old 07-16-2010, 06:23 PM
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Genevieve Female Genevieve is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cinok View Post
Some of the outdoor burners such as turkey fryers have a very high BTU output so it must be regulated carefully . Some of the 3 burner models are not as high has others, lok and see in the owners manulaor even on the stoce it self for burner output.
This is what my manual said not to use. I have a 3 burner that is part of a portable camping grill. You just take the grill part off and you have 3 burners to use. Works just fine for water bath canning. Haven't learned to pressure can yet.
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