Hi Im Tricia an organic gardener canning is a great way to extend your harvest into the winter months. Today we are going to demonstrate canning of low acid vegetables like green beans. Water bath canning is great for pickles chutneys fruits and high acid tomatoes but for low acid vegetables and meats you'll need a pressure canner. If your pressure canning time is more than ten minutes you'll need clean jars while washing check you jars with your finger for any defects in the jars or leads that may prevent a seal and make sure that your rubber rings are nice and pliable too.
I like this all-american pressure canner its made of heavy duty aluminum in Wisconsin and it features a metal to metal seal and a weighted pressure regulator. Before you start canning make sure your pressure pipe is clear. To prevent your lid from getting scratched or sticking lubricate the edges about every third or fourth time you use the pot. Fill your canner with about one and a half inches of water and never let your canner run dry that can ruin it. Place the canning rack rim down into the canner never place the canning jars directly on the bottom of the canner the heat may damage the jars. To get a good batch of green beans harvest or buy nine pounds of green beans choose thin young and tender pods discard those that are molding bug nibbled or discolored. Wash your beans thoroughly and you can snap them in half if you prefer I like to leave mine whole. Remove the tops of the beans kitchen shears make this job easy.
I'm going to blanch the beans before canning that means being the beans in a large pot with enough water to cover and bringing it to a boil for about five minutes For flavor you can add about a half teaspoon of salt to each jar although this is not necessary for preserving. Once there finished blanching pack the jars loosely with beans add the hot water that the beans were blanched in into the jars. Because green beans tend to swell in processing leave one inch of space at the top of the jar this space will be called headspace in your canning recipe. Now place your jars in the canner if you arn't processing enough food to fill the entire canner put some water filled jars into the canner so the jars don't bang into each other during processing. Just place the cover on the canner tighten down the wing nuts but not completely then in an alternating pattern tighten them down completely. You want to make sure that there's a uniform gap all around the canner that's normal.
Turn the heat on high to bring the water in the canner to a boil and don't put the regulating weight on yet. Once you see the steam from the ventpipe set a timer for seven minutes this process is called exhausting. The pressure regulator has settings from five ten to fifteen pounds per inch. Times up the beans call for fifteen pounds of pressure above a thousand-feet elevation when the correct pressure has been reached the regulator weight will jiggle and allow some steam to escape. Watch the heat if the regulator weight jiggles more than four times a minute turn down the heat. Start the processing time twenty five minutes is what's necessary for the quart jars. After the twenty five minutes just turn off the heat and let the canner depressurize. Do not remove the regulator weight yet wait until the pressure gauge reads zero. Once the pressure reaches zero with a mitt on slowly remove the regulating weight open the cover wearing oven mitts and open the side that is opposite to you first to avoid being scolded by steam.
Lift out the jars and place them on a towel or wooden cutting board to cool completely and seal leave them undisturbed overnight. When you remove the clips the lid should not move if a jar has failed to seal put it in the refrigerator and eat the food promptly. Store your jars in a cool dark place with the clips off and the tabs facing outward. Do some pressure canning and grow organic for life!