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Old 09-24-2020, 06:24 AM   #1
Assistant Cook
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Cincinnati
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Chili Jars Didn't Seal

Hello all,

First time posting here so go easy on me.

I tried pressure canning some home made chili for the first time borrowing a friendís pressure canner. All went well until I got impatient after the cook and force-released the pressure causing siphoning in 5/6 jars. One sealed well but the other 5 were discovered unsealed in the morning after sitting overnight.

Iím reading that you have up to 24 hours to either freeze or reprocess after a failed seal is discovered... but is this right for chili? Especially chili that has sat unrefrigerated for 10 hours. Doesnít seem right, but I really donít want to dump 5 quarts of delicious chili if I donít have to.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 09-24-2020, 12:19 PM   #2
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Location: USA,Michigan
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Personally, I would toss it. Chili has a bunch of ingredients that have no acid, and is thus a great place for microbes to thrive at room temp. If it had been refrigerated, you could have put it back into a pot, brought it to a simmer, and started over with clean jars, and the pressure canner.

I have eaten chili that was left over at room temp for several hours, cold pizza too. But you are risking stomach illness, and it's just not worth it. If the lids were not clamped, there is no chance for botulism, as the responsible microbe is anaerobic, that is, live in an oxygen free environment. If the lid was clamped down, even if not perfectly sealed, then botulism is possible.

Here is link for safely canning chili - https://nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_05/chili_con_carne.html

Be safe. dump the chii. Make a new batch and follow correct procedure.

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Old 09-24-2020, 02:10 PM   #3
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Hi and welcome to Discuss Cooking

You have up to 24 hours for high-acid foods like jams and pickles. As the Chief said, a low-acid food like chili that requires pressure canning will not be safe after several hours at room temperature.
Anyplace where people argue about food is a good place.
~ Anthony Bourdain, Parts Unknown, 2018
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Old 10-02-2020, 08:22 AM   #4
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Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Cincinnati
Posts: 2

Thanks for everyoneís responses. I have an interesting development that Iíd like to share.

I happen to work at a food manufacturing facility with a fully equipped micro lab, so instead of scrapping a triple batch of delicious, delicious chili I decided to put my questionable product to the test! They ran a total plate count (basically a count of all bacterial colonies in the sample) as well as a yeast and mold test. Happy to report that everything came back well-within acceptable ranges, so I plan to play the role of guinea pig this weekend and treat myself to a bowl. Iíll reply back afterwards to let everyone know how Iím feeling. If you donít hear back from me, feel free to assume the worst

Disclaimer: this is not an endorsement for consuming questionable home-canned goods in all cases. But Iím gonna give it a shot this time in the name of science!
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