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Old 10-16-2020, 08:24 AM   #1
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Lactic Acid Canning

I've been looking at viable ways to preserve food from my first harvest, but I'm a bit confused about best choices. I've been looking at lactic acid pickels for vegitables. I'm wondering if it's okay to pressure can them when they're done to seal them, and kill botulism. I know sea water is only 3.5%, which I was interested in, but that's not enough salt for botulism. Also it seems like a low percentage in general. It's a bit staggering to think the sea isn't salty enough to pickle, lol. So how can I deal with that? How did they overcome these hurtles in the past? I'm not using electricity right now, but that may be an option. Thank you.

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Old 10-16-2020, 08:41 AM   #2
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When you say lactic acid canning, I assume you're referring to fermenting, like for dill pickles or sauerkraut. Fermentation uses salt to pull the liquid out of vegetables and encourages the growth of good bacteria that produce lactic acid as they grow. Clostridium botulinum can't survive in the acidic environment. Properly fermented foods don't need to be pressure canned.

Look up and follow the procedures on this site: nchfp.uga.edu
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Old 10-16-2020, 08:48 AM   #3
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Yeah, that's it Got. Salt water ferments. But I saw some people using it for nearly any veggie. String beans, brocolli, ect. It only has a shelf life of a few months refrigerated though? Are drying and refrigeration the only other options? How did pioneers and colonials handle this without refreigerators?
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Old 10-16-2020, 09:04 AM   #4
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Where did you see that? Not everyone who posts on the internet is knowledgeable about safely preserving food. I'm not a fermenter, so I'm not an expert on that type of preserving.

Canning was invented in the early 1800s in France and has only been available for home use in the United States since the late 1800s. Before that, salting, pickling with a lot of alcohol or vinegar, and drying were the primary preservation methods. And of course, lots of people got food poisoning - not necessarily bad enough to kill them, but having the runs was a common condition.
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Old 10-16-2020, 09:16 AM   #5
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Yeah, I know, not always good info. Here's a video I watched. I cought a bit of bad info in it, saying low oxygen isn't good for bacteria. But a search shows a lot of people using this method for various food items. Not that it makes it a smart thing to do.

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Old 10-16-2020, 04:10 PM   #6
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Jeremy, pioneers had root cellars built into the ground, to keep things cool but not frozen during the year.
There is water bath canning, used for pickles made with vinegar. Boiling water.

There is pressure canning, used for low acid vegetables and meats. Pressure canning above normal pressures and temperatures.

There is a low temperature method of pasteurization canning for fermented vegetables. Heating to 180-185 deg F and holding it there for a time period.
https://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_06/low_temp_pasteur.html


You might want to noodle around in the nchfp website for more on low temperature pasteurization recipes and more detailed instructions. good luck.
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Old 10-16-2020, 08:18 PM   #7
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What he said was that oxygen encouraged the bad bacteria. OTOH, water isn't anaerobic. O2 dissolves in water. But, he is right that you need to make sure your vegis are submerged.
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Old 10-16-2020, 11:16 PM   #8
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Try the Facebook page called the Salt-Cured Pickle -- https://www.facebook.com/groups/TheSaltCuredPickle

People in this group, particularly the admins and 'oldtimers', are very knowledgeable about the topic.

In Eastern Europe and Russia, fermenting was an important method of preserving veg for winter, and they have lots of expertise in those techniques.
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Old 10-17-2020, 06:58 AM   #9
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Taxlady, I get ya. But oxygen only encourages some bad bacteria. One of the worst, botulism, loves low oxygen. I didn't know the ph was high enough to kill it in salt ferments. I didn't think it would get as high as a 50-50 vinegar pickle with water.

Summer57, I'll definitely look into that. All the knowledge we get is suitable for 2020. The ancient Egyptians and Babylonians were preserving fish and bird in pickles way back. That's the type of info I'd be into. Root cellers would be nice, but I'm not sure it's possible in my area without a pump. I'd have to look into it. We get rains, and have good soil.
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Old 10-17-2020, 09:10 AM   #10
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Remember that knowledge and technology have improved dramatically since ancient times. They did what they had to do to survive and not everything worked out perfectly. Food poisoning was common. Even a root cellar only keeps foods cooled to about 55°F, well within the danger zone where bacteria grow fastest (41-140°F). Canning for most people is a fun hobby, not a necessity, because if it fails, you can always go to the store. You don't want to risk your or other's lives and health using outdated methods.
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Old 10-17-2020, 02:45 PM   #11
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Jeremy, do you have any streams or a spring near you that run cold? You could consider a spring house for traditional cold storage.
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Old 10-17-2020, 08:25 PM   #12
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You said --
"Root cellers would be nice, but I'm not sure it's possible in my area without a pump. I'd have to look into it. We get rains, and have good soil."

We can't have underground root cellars here, either. Too much rain and a high water table.

The oldtimers used an above ground root cellar, on a cement base. It's a building within a building. Sawdust filled the gap between the two buildings and insulated the produce in the inner building from the weather.
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Old 10-18-2020, 06:00 AM   #13
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LOL - Summer and Jeremy - opposite ends of the country and the same problem. Small world, eh?

Jeremy, I've always considered a root celery a place to store you winter vegies, your apples, carrots. Canned goods are kept there because of space and yes, to keep cool from a hot kitchen.

You could do (build) an above ground 'root' cellar - insulation would be the key. Do you have a storage area in the house or garage that you could insulate?

Keep in mind that even with a root cellar you have to keep an eye on your produce for dampness and the ones starting to turn.

I believe in Victorian days there was one maids job to continually wipe dry and turn the apples, pears, etc.

I also just remembered! Sand! barrels of sand are an insulation. Empty those oyster barrels and fill them from the beach with sand! Need to find the article I just read on it. Will post when - if I do.
Apple crates with straw, which is what I'm doing this winter for my squash. Keeping onions, carrots, apples, potatoes there as well.
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Old 10-18-2020, 11:25 AM   #14
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Dragn, this discussion of indoor root cellars reminded me of one I had, when I had a duplex in town. The basement had been renovated and most of it was a living room and a large kitchen. In the corner of the living room, next to the outside wall/foundation, was a small room, about 2 metres by 1 metre. It had a small window with one of those small, spinny, ventilation things. It was insulated with foam board (on three walls IIRC) and had shelves on all the walls. It stayed quite cool in winter. I think we had to be careful that it didn't freeze when it got really cold. I used that as a root cellar and for storage of stuff like my canned jams and tomato sauce, etc. Of course it aso had store bought canned goods and extras of other food stuffs.

I had completely forgotten about that cold space.
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Old 10-18-2020, 11:31 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taxlady View Post
Dragn, this discussion of indoor root cellars reminded me of one I had, when I had a duplex in town. The basement had been renovated and most of it was a living room and a large kitchen. In the corner of the living room, next to the outside wall/foundation, was a small room, about 2 metres by 1 metre. It had a small window with one of those small, spinny ventilation things. It was insulated with foam board (on three walls IIRC) and had shelves on all the walls. It stayed quite cool in winter. I think we had to be careful that it didn't freeze when it got really cold. I used that as a root cellar and for storage of stuff like my canned jams and tomato sauce, etc. Of course it aso had store bought canned goods and extras of other food stuffs.

I had completely forgotten about that cold space.
The house I was raised in in Ohio had that same feature. When we moved in it came with some vintage canned goods!
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Old 10-21-2020, 08:58 AM   #16
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GotGarlic, I agree. I bought a book on Amazon by some professionals 'The Farmhouse Culture Guide to Fermenting' by Kathryn Lukas and Shane Peterson. I loved it. I'm going to get some good cans, airlocks, and vacuum buckets from Uline. I'm pretty sure at the end of next fall I'll have refrigeration anyway. If not I can freeze elsewhere for a year. Thanks, guys for all the info. I would suggest that book, it's $20 bucks on Kindle. I learned a lot from it. And it has a ton of gourmet recipes. Including a garlic recipe.
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Old 10-21-2020, 09:34 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by bethzaring View Post
The house I was raised in in Ohio had that same feature. When we moved in it came with some vintage canned goods!
Interesting.

The house I grew up in (area was frequently foggy, seldom warm) had a "cooler" off the kitchen. It was a 2'X2'X5' box. The outer wall was wire mesh. My grandmother stored many items in it.

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