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Old 06-06-2008, 01:01 PM   #1
Assistant Cook
Join Date: Jun 2008
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Canning salmon clear and complex...

Hi, All,

I'd like to try canning my spring caught chinook salmon. my equipment is a new (smells like rubber) 23 qt presto canner. I've got a baby kahuna propane burner to do the canning outside... i tried it out yesterday and was very satisfied with the whole processes (except the rubber smell which i hope will go away). i was able to keep the dial gauge at a constant 15lbs pressure by deftly controlling the gas burners regulator. I'm going to can some water to gain confidence and familiarity with my new pressure canner before committing to the actual salmon packing and canning.

as far as canning the salmon clear (raw pack with only a teaspoon of salt added) i feel pretty confident. I'm at 2000 ft elevation and i reckon i must can the raw packed salmon @ 15lbs pressure for 110 minutes.

but what i'd also like to do is put a dry rub on half to the salmon, marinate, then wash off the dry rub and let glaze before cutting the fish into packable size pieces for the 1 pint jars i'm canning in. in other words i'm preparing the salmon as if for smoking but instead canning the product.

here is a link to the (award winning) brown sugar rub I've elected to use:

since i can't post a url just google Cardogs Barbecue Team salmon brown sugar rub.

can anyone tell me if i may have trouble premarinating the fish in this fashion? will it adversely affect the ph/acidity and make it unsuitable for canning?

I've been reading the book 'Putting Food By' and it declares on page 161

"all home-canned fish must be exhausted to a minimum of 170 F at the center of the packed jar before it is Pressure-processed.

REASON: before actual processing begins, we must drive air from the tissues of raw fish as well as from the pack to help ensure the seal and to prevent unwanted shrinkage of the food during processing.

Exhausting jars of fish is done best in the pressure canner at zero pounds. place filled jars on the rack in the bottom of the canner and pour hot water around them until it comes halfway up their sides. lay the cover on and 'leave the vent open. turn the heat up high, and when you hear the water boiling hard inside the canner and steam flows strongly in a steady stream from the vent -indicating that the temperature has reached 212 F/100C inside. when the steam flows strongly start counting the exhaust time. it will take 10 to 20 minutes for the center of the filled jars to reach the desired minimum of 170F, depending on the size of the jar and the size of the solidness of the fish pieces; always insert your pencil thermometer deep in a test jar to make sure.

when jars are exhausted, lift the canner off the heat and finish screwing the bands firmly tight as for any processing. return the canner to heat, put on the lid and let steam vent in strong, steady flow for 10 minutes before closing the petcock/vent and starting to time the processing period. the amount of very hot water remaining in the canner after exhausting the jars should be ample for pressure-processing.

pressure process at 10 lbs (240 F / 116C) for 1hour and 50 minutes. "

this also requires a pencil thermometer which for the life of me i can not find anywhere, locally or online...maybe they no longer make the glass thermometers in a case...everything i've found is either digital or not suitable for placing in a test jar in a pressure canner.

if anyone can direct me to the supplier of this hard to find instrument which also goes by the description; exhausting thermometer, I'd sure appreciate it.

thanks for any help.



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Old 06-06-2008, 01:06 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Small Town Mississippi
Posts: 17,390
Welcome to DC tws..Make yourself at home...

Try this site for information on your canning.....

National Center for Home Food Preservation

There is only one Quality worse than Hardness of Heart, and that is Softness of Head.

Kool-Aid...Think Before You Drink
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Old 06-06-2008, 02:50 PM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Posts: 6,592
Well, the thermometer is no problem ... except by searching for it by that name. Here is one site that has what you are looking for - a lab/scientific web bulb thermometer. You don't need to get the really expensive ASTM certified thermometers - a lower accuracy of +/- 1-2 is plenty close for cooking purposes. I do not know what would make any instant-read digital or dial type probe type thermometer unsuitable for your application.

As for your rub idea - I don't know what about it would make your salmon unsafe for canning because of pH/acidity. Remember, the reason you are pressure canning your fish is because it is low in acid to begin with. Don't know why your idea wouldn't work - don't know about the results. You could even take it one step further and smoke it befor canning if you wanted.

You really might want to read the information on canning salmon at the site Uncle Bob gave you - under the canning section. You might want to also pay attention to the pressure and processing times based on the type of canner you have (dial or weighted) guage. They are not the same.
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain
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