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Old 04-23-2011, 03:20 PM   #1
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Canning question

Hi, I'm new to this forum. I used to can years ago using one of those big water canners. I'd like to start canning again but I have a smooth top/ceramic cook top. I'm thinking of getting a pressure canner so I can do some other things besides peaches and pears. I always did everything in a canner but that was over 30 years ago and now I hear you're not supposed to do tomatoes in it?
That's what my Mom always used too.
Anyways, back to my question - what kind of pressure cooker would be good and would it be better to get a separate burner to use so I don't scratch up my cook-top?

Thank you, I'm glad I found this forum, looks like a lot of great info.

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Old 04-23-2011, 04:19 PM   #2
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oops, sorry. I had that backwards I guess. You do tomatoes in the water bath and low acid in the pressure canner. Right??
Also, I heard that there is a difference between a pressure canner and pressure cooker. I thought they were the same thing. I sure have a lot to learn again after all the years of not canning. So many new things.
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Old 04-23-2011, 04:33 PM   #3
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I too have a glass top, and got a separate burner to do water bath canning. Not expensive. I have also used a steam canner I got from GardensAlive that works well for small batches. It has a big dome top with a small water well. The book "Summer in a Jar "has great recipes for steam canning. It was written a number of years ago but everything I have made from it has been fab!

Pressure cookers scare me! (wimp).
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:02 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lilcee View Post
oops, sorry. I had that backwards I guess. You do tomatoes in the water bath and low acid in the pressure canner. Right??
Also, I heard that there is a difference between a pressure canner and pressure cooker. I thought they were the same thing. I sure have a lot to learn again after all the years of not canning. So many new things.
Tomatoes may not be acid enough by themselves for water bath canning. It's safer to add some acid (lemon juice, citric acid, etc.) to tomatoes for water bath canning.

A pressure canner is a pressure cooker. It's just designed to easily hold canning jars and it's usually big. You can pressure cook in a pressure canner. A pressure cooker can be used for pressure canning smaller amounts, if the jars fit easily.
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:14 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Dawgluver View Post
I too have a glass top, and got a separate burner to do water bath canning. Not expensive. I have also used a steam canner I got from GardensAlive that works well for small batches. It has a big dome top with a small water well. The book "Summer in a Jar "has great recipes for steam canning. It was written a number of years ago but everything I have made from it has been fab!

Pressure cookers scare me! (wimp).
I'm kinda scared of pressure cookers too so not sure what I want. I heard you can't use the water canners on a glass top. What kind of burner did you get? I've been doing a lot of research before I start canning. I've never heard of a steam canner. Thanks for the info.
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:15 PM   #6
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Tomatoes may not be acid enough by themselves for water bath canning. It's safer to add some acid (lemon juice, citric acid, etc.) to tomatoes for water bath canning.

A pressure canner is a pressure cooker. It's just designed to easily hold canning jars and it's usually big. You can pressure cook in a pressure canner. A pressure cooker can be used for pressure canning smaller amounts, if the jars fit easily.
Thanks for your info.
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:39 PM   #7
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I was scared of pressure cookers/canners too.

Then I saw a Presto pressure canner:



You have to line up those flanges with the gaps between the flanges in the lid and twist it shut. That looked pretty convincing to me, that the lid wouldn't come off in use. I'm still nervous about the ones that don't have flanges like that.

Funny story: some friends of mine were pressure cooking a chicken and forgot about it (not a good idea). Eventually the entire chicken flew out through the emergency vent (less than a 1/2 inch opening in the lid) and implanted itself in the ceiling above the stove! No damage to the pressure cooker other than needing to replace the rubber doohicky that goes in that vent.
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:43 PM   #8
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I was scared of pressure cookers/canners too.

Then I saw a Presto pressure canner:



You have to line up those flanges with the gaps between the flanges in the lid and twist it shut. That looked pretty convincing to me, that the lid wouldn't come off in use. I'm still nervous about the ones that don't have flanges like that.

Funny story: some friends of mine were pressure cooking a chicken and forgot about it (not a good idea). Eventually the entire chicken flew out through the emergency vent (less than a 1/2 inch opening in the lid) and implanted itself in the ceiling above the stove! No damage to the pressure cooker other than needing to replace the rubber doohicky that goes in that vent.
That's funny lol.
That presto - pressure/canner looks good. Do you know if you can use it on a glass cook top? I'm kinda afraid of scratching it or cracking it. Maybe I should get a separate burner
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lilcee

I'm kinda scared of pressure cookers too so not sure what I want. I heard you can't use the water canners on a glass top. What kind of burner did you get? I've been doing a lot of research before I start canning. I've never heard of a steam canner. Thanks for the info.
My burner is a GE double burner I got from Walmart. Probably $ 20. You plug it in. There are other models.

I think the weight of the water is why they don't rec water baths on glass tops. I have done it, but was nervous, hence, the purchase of the separate burners. Then I got the steam canner.

Check out gardens alive.com website for the steam canner. It is so much easier than water bath, and perfectly safe. Takes so much less time to heat the water. Check out the cookbook too.

I blanche, skin and freeze my tomatoes, also dehydrate. I agree, need acid for any type of WB canning.

Will post my Dilly Green Beans rec, almost as good as Grandma's, set your teeth on edge!

Have a couple pressure cookers I have never used if you would like to buy! (again, wimp).

Happy canning!
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:00 PM   #10
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That's funny lol.
That presto - pressure/canner looks good. Do you know if you can use it on a glass cook top? I'm kinda afraid of scratching it or cracking it. Maybe I should get a separate burner
I have never used a glass cook top. I have read here that most of the scratching comes from sliding ones pots and pans on the surface. I think that with a big, heavy, pressure canner sliding it would be a real issue. With the weight of a full pressure canner, I can easily see it bumping the surface hard when putting it down.
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