Why and how do you do this?
Most fresh foods contain a very high percentage of water and this makes them perishable. They spoil or lose their quality for several reasons:
- Loss of Moisture
- Enzyme Activity
- Microorganism Growth – Bacteria, Molds and Yeasts
Microorganisms live on the surfaces of fresh food and multiply quickly. They also make themselves at home on the inside of bruised, damaged and diseased food. Both oxygen and enzymes are present throughout fresh food tissues.
Proper Canning Practices Include:
- Carefully Selecting and Washing Fresh, Quality Food
- Peeling Some Foods
- Hot Packing Foods
- Adding Acids like Lemon Juice or Vinegar to Some Foods
- Using Acceptable Jars and Self-Sealing Lids
- Properly Processing Jars in the appropriate Canner (Pressure or Water-Bath depending upon acidity of food) for the Correct Period of Time
When all of the methods are used above during Canning, you’ll remove oxygen, destroy enzymes, prevent the growth of bacteria, yeasts & molds, plus help form a high vacuum in your canning jars (keeping liquid in and air out).
Remember – the best method of success in Canning is to follow proper Canning techniques. Learn more about proper techniques from the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning.
* Information adapted from the USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning, 2009 Edition.