Category Archives: Canning

Canning Jalapenos

dsc_0010I have a confession.  Although  my DNA states I am a majority Norwegian my palate screams I am hispanic.  If you live in the SW it is hard to not indulge in jalapeño everything.  This year I grew our own and they’re amazing.

2 lb fresh jalapeno peppers
4 c. white vinegar
4 c. filtered water
4 Tbsp pickling salt
4 cloves garlic (optional)
2 Tbsp whole black peppercorns
2 Tbsp raw sugar

Add vinegar, water, salt and garlic and peppercorns or honey (if using) to a medium saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to keep at a simmer.
Wearing latex or plastic gloves, slice the jalapenos into 1/4-inch rings.

dsc_0021Add the rings to the brine and bring back to just a boil. Shut stove off and clean your jars.
Wash all jars and lids thoroughly with soap and water and rinse well. Fill your canner with enough water to cover the jars by at least 1 inch and bring to a simmer.

dsc_0023Use a ladle to pour the jalapenos into the jars through a canning funnel, leaving 1/2-inch headspace at the top. Place the lids on, and screw on the rings until just finger-tight. Bring the water to a full rolling boil, and process for 10 minutes.


Thai Spicy Pickles

These are my spicy refrigerator pickles, and I pray the last of my cucumbers for this season.

2 1/2 pounds cucumbers
1 1/2 cups water
2 1/2 cups rice vinegar
1  cup raw sugar
1  cup white vinegar
1  tablespoon kosher salt
20  fresh Thai chile peppers, halved lengthwise
5  or more cloves garlic, smashed
5  or more stalks lemongrass, peeled, trimmed.



DSC_0005Thoroughly scrub cucumbers. Cut cucumbers lengthwise into spears.
In a 4- to 5-quart stainless-steel, enamel, or nonstick heavy pot combine the water, rice vinegar, sugar, white vinegar, and salt. Bring mixture to boiling, stirring to dissolve sugar.

DSC_0008 2
Pack cucumber spears loosely into five hot sterilized pint canning jars, leaving a 1/2-inch headspace. Add 4 Thai chile halves, 1 clove garlic, and, if desired, one-fifth of the lemongrass to each jar.


DSC_0010 2Pour hot vinegar mixture over cucumber mixture, maintaining the 1/2-inch headspace.

DSC_0016 Cool for 30 minutes; seal and label.
Chill for at least 1 week before serving.

Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Peach Chipotle Sauce


My beloved Peach Tree:-)

  • 8 to 10   fresh peaches blanched, peeled, pitted and chopped.
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 finely chopped Chipotle Peppers in adobe sauce ( you will find these in the mexican food section)
  • Red Pepper flakes to taste
  • 1 package liquid pectin (optional)

Once your peaches have been blanched, peeled, pitted and sliced.  Mix your peaches, lemon juice and chipotle peppers together and bring to a full boil.  Once you’ve reached this stage add your sugar and lemon juice and place over low to medium heat for 15 minutes.  You will want it to be a good simmer the entire time.  It’s time to use your immersion mixer and break down your peaches once you have done this throw in your pepper flakes.  Don’t over-mix your sauce you want it broken down but not too velvety.  It should look close to the picture above minus the shadow..

How your ready to can.  Take your sterilized jars and fill them with your sauce.  Please leave 1/2″ headspace and screw on your bands but not too tight.  I water bath mine for 15 minutes and live around 3,400 ft.  Always make sure you process your jars according to your altitude.  Once you pull your jars from your water bath you should hear a “pop” within a minute or so and that is the sound of success.


We use this sauce on Roasted Pork as a glaze.  We also use it on sandwiches and feel free to pour it over cream cheese and serve as an appetizer.


Spicy Onion and Honeycrisp Relish


2 lbs. sweet onions
1 large Honeycrisp apple
1 c. apple juice
½ c. cider vinegar
3 tsp. fresh, minced garlic
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. black pepper
¼ tsp. ground mustard
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 box Low or No Sugar Needed pectin
½ tsp. butter or oil
1 c. honey
½ raw sugar with 1/2 tsp molasses


Prepare waterbath canner

DSC_0029Cut ends off onions and peel; slice in half and then dice length wise.

Add prepared onions, apple juice, vinegar, garlic, salt, pepper, mustard and red pepper flakes to an 8-qt. stockpot.

DSC_0033Gradually stir in pectin and then add butter.Bring to a boil that can’t be stirred down over high heat, stirring constantly.
DSC_0037Add honey ,raw sugar and molasses return to a full boil and let boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.


Remove from heat. Ladle hot marmalade into prepared jars Wipe rims, attach lids, and place in canner.
Place lid on canner and bring boil 15 minutes.


Turn off heat, and remove jars to a towel-lined surface to cool for 24 hours without disturbing.

Canned Salsa Verde


I love canning this and using it for Verde Enchiladas.


1 cookie sheet of tomatillos (make sure husks are removed)
5 Serrano peppers,  you can use Jalapeños too
1 large white onion
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup lime juice
1/2 cup loosely packed finely chopped cilantro
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper


AFTER you have prepared your ingredients place  tomatillos in your oven at 425 degrees for a min of 15 to 20 minutes. You want them charred on top.

DSC_0008TAKE tomatillos out and process in blender with remaining ingredients. This is the time to taste test your salsa and make sure it’s to your liking.  If you want more spice add it.  I sometimes don’t until later incase some people can’t handle my heat:-)

PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil. Wash lids in warm soapy water and set bands aside.DSC_0014LADLE hot salsa into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center hot lid on jar. Apply band and adjust until fit is fingertip tight.

PROCESS filled jars in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours.



Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.

Candy’s Famous Bread and Butter Pickles

DSC_0021My sister makes the best bread and butter pickles.  I seldom make comments like this, but they are seriously that good.   I’m determined to put up everything coming out of my garden this summer.

Here is the closest variation of her recipe.  I have to say closest as she doesn’t measure and if you turn your back she will throw a few more spices in the pot and giggle. She’s stealthy that way.   She also does ARMY batches so I had to break it down into a more managable ratio.

What you will need

1 Jar Pickling Spices
2 Tablespoons Red Pepper Flakes (if you don’t like it spicy than reduce this)
1 Sweet Onion
4 large Cucumbers
2 Cups Apple Cider Vinegar (NO DO NOT USE REGULAR)
2 cups Raw sugar
Canning Jars and Rims
Oven or pot to sterilize jars


IMG_2959First cut up your cucumbers and onions and toss in a couple tablespoons of salt.

IMG_2960Place cheesecloth on top of pickles and onions and cover with ice.  I threw mine in the fridge to chill while I ran errands.

IMG_2962Place your pickling spice and red pepper flakes in a sauce pot. If you wish to add additional spices like Cinnamon and mustard seed now is the time.

IMG_2963You will add your equal parts of sugar and apple cider vinegar to your pan. You can use regular sugar, I prefer raw sugar.

IMG_2964Place pot on stove and bring to boil.

IMG_2971When you removed your pickles and onions from fridge they will have sweat a great deal.  Drain the liquid off and then place them in our pot with your marinade.

DSC_0019Bring to a boil and allow to sit.  This is where you will want to taste your liquid to make sure it’s spicy enough.

IMG_2973You will want to sterilize your jars and rims. You can process them in a hot water bath or rinse them in hot water and place in 200 degree oven for 10 minutes.

DSC_0021Ladle your pickles into jars and then add juice.  Process in water bath for 20 minutes.

DSC_0027The perfect bread and butter pickles.




Dehydrated Orange Slices

DSC_0004A couple lifetimes ago I worked for Ron Popeil.  When I worked for him Dehydrators were all the rage. I can honestly say my dehydrator has lasted me over two decades.

Last week one of my neighbors dropped some orange slices by.  I honestly don’t know why I haven’t dried them out prior to this.   I decided to use regular and blood oranges to add some color.

DSC_0057First wash your oranges and then begin to slice them.  I first used our mandolin but felt it was doing more harm than good.  Then I simply started cutting them by hand. You can add spices if you would like.

DSC_0059Next I placed them on the drying racks and walked away for a few hours.  Around hour 4, I rotated my racks.

DSC_0062And continued to dehydrate the oranges.

DSC_0065They took around 10-12 hours.  It will depend on how juicy your oranges are and how thin you slice them. Your house will smell amazing after these have been drying out for a few hours.

DSC_0013You can eat them rind and all,  if you’re ok with the bitter rind.  I actually like orange rinds as they provide a ton of natural fiber.

They really are beautiful and quite helpful when it comes to snacking in the mommy pick-up line.  I also like to hang them in trees when we go on nature hikes for the birds.


Fresh Cranberry Sauce eat now or can for later


I love cranberry sauce!  Not the jellied kind you buy at the store, yuck!  I love taking fresh cranberries and simmering them into a beautiful sauce.  Here’s my recipe.

6 Cups fresh bagged cranberries
1 1/2 Cups water
2 Cups Sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
Spices of your choice I used Cinnamon, Cardamom, Cloves, Cayenne and Chipotle Powder
You can also add Orange or Lime zest if you prefer


Throw all ingredients into a pan and simmer. You will start to hear your cranberries popping in the pan, just continue to stir every minute or so.


I simmer mine for around 10 minutes.

Remove from pan and place in freshly sterilized jars and lids.


Water bath for 15 minutes or until all seeds seal.


Now you have ready made gifts for anyone that pops by during this busy holiday season.  Bring on the Turkey sandwiches!



Peach Brandy Jam


I chose AppleJack brandy for this recipe.  If you haven’t heard of AppleJack it is America’s original brandy.  George Washington’s favorite drink of choice and it makes these peaches delicious.

4 to 5 cups peaches
5 1.2  cups raw sugar
Juice of one lemon
Zest of lemon
1/3 cup AppleJack Brandy
Spices to taste Cinnamon, cloves, allspice
1 (3-oz.) package liquid pectin

1. Sterilize jars, and prepare lids as described on below.


2. While jars are sterilizing start blanching your ripe peaches.  You will do this by placing a cross cut on the bottom of your peach and placing it in boiling water for about a minute.


3. One you do this throw your peaches in ice water and the peel comes right off.


4. Dice your peaches and set out your ingredients above.


5. Place peaches, zest, juice and applejack, spices and pectin into a pan and take it to a roaring boil.


6. Now add your sugar all at once and take it to another roaring boil. Make sure your sugar dissolves.


7. Ladle ingredients into your clean jars and water bath for 15 minutes.


8. Remove jars from water, and let stand, undisturbed, at room temperature 24 hours. To check seals, remove the bands, and press down on the center of each lid. If the lid doesn’t move, the jar is sealed. If the lid depresses and pops up again, the jar is not sealed.


Store properly sealed jars in a cool, dark place up to 1 year. Refrigerate after opening.




Peach and Cilantro Chutney

fontcandy-5My sister loves Chutney any and all Chutney.  Here is a great Peach Chutney recipe that can be served along side rice or as a side dish.


2 1/2 pounds firm-but-ripe peaches
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup raw sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 small shallot, minced
1/2 cup dried black currants
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 lemongrass stalk
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds
ground curry powder to taste
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons coarsely ground pink peppercorns
salt to taste


Set a metal rack in another large pot. Fill the pot with water, cover and bring to a boil. Add the peaches and boil until the skins loosen, about 30 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the peaches to a large rimmed baking sheet and let cool. Peel the peaches, then halve and pit them and cut into 1/2-inch dice.


Fill a large pot with water, cover and bring to a boil. Add the canning jars, lids and rings along with a set of tongs and a ladle and simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes to sterilize. Cover the pot and turn off the heat.


In a large skillet, combine the cider vinegar with the granulated and brown sugars and bring to a boil to dissolve the sugars. Add the shallot, currants, ginger, cumin seeds, lemongrass, coriander seeds, and curry powder, simmer over moderate heat for 5 minutes. Add the peaches and simmer over moderate heat until tender, about 4 minutes. Discard the lemongrass.  Stir in the cilantro and peppercorn and season with salt.

Using the sterilized tongs, remove the jars from the hot water and transfer them to a large rimmed baking sheet. Ladle the chutney into the jars, leaving 1/2 inch of space at the top. Using the tongs, place the lids on the jars followed by the rings. Screw on the lids securely but not too tightly.

Using canning tongs, lower the jars onto the rack in the pot of boiling water, making sure they are covered by at least 1 inch of water. Boil the jarred chutney over high heat for 15 minutes.Store the chutney in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months; if the chutney separates, stir to combine before serving.