I don't like canning. However, I'm very grateful for all the yummy fruit we have growing in our orchard and I refuse to see it go to waste. So...yesterday I canned.
We still have more apples to pick, but here's the first picking from one of the trees.
Those are some of our pears in the jars. I ended up with 18 quart jars of dehydrated pear slices. Also, see that beautiful apple! That's the biggest apple that we harvested this year. It was too pretty to turn into applesauce, so it was set aside for eating fresh.
As much as I dislike canning, I will admit that this year was easier than last year. Over the past year I have acquired several tools that made canning easier. Last year I used my big pressure canner as a water bath canner. However this year I was able to use a real water bath canner with a rack and that made it much easier. I also acquired a handy apple peeler/corer/slicer since last year. It made things go so much faster!
I had to fiddle with the appropriate thickness for the peeler blade, but once I got everything set correctly it was a little bit fun to use this tool.
First you just push the apple onto the three-pronged rod and spin the handle. The apple is then peeled, cored, and sliced all at the same time.
Then you just slide the finished apple away from the core.
The kids loved the sliced apples. Sarah kept calling them "yo-yo apples."
From that basket I ended up with 13 pints of applesauce. (In the back is some salsa that I'm fermenting for Shawn.)
Whooo, I am so glad that's done! I wish I would have taken a picture of my kitchen after the canning process was finished. It looked like a bomb had gone off. Just one of the reasons why I dislike the canning process, but really like the feeling after it's all said and done.