What are we Canadians canning/preserving?
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  1. #1
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    Question What are we Canadians canning/preserving?

    I'm curious to see if there's much of a difference between here and the US. Especially as we have a full four season year. Though much of the Northern US is like that too.

    I'm also curious if anyone is stockpiling their own homemade produce/food...like canned goods, and what might be the 'regional' specialties. I know for me it just isn't fall until I put up some saskatoon jam. Seems that's a marker for how well I'm doing in the fall. The next regional specialty for me will be a rhubarb jam of some sort. When my sister lived in Nfld. it was partridge berry jam she put up every fall.

    I'm stockpiling canned goods right now. Mostly sugar free jams and jellies, and pickles.

    ~ sweet pickles (with sugar)
    ~ sf sweet pickles (stevia)
    ~ sf applesauce
    ~ sf saskatoon jam
    ~ sf pear jam
    ~ sf peach jam
    ~ sf crabapple jelly
    ~ sf golden plum jam
    ~ sf salsa

    What's everyone else putting up?

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    Registered User Sophiasmama's Avatar
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    Well I full intentions of doing peaches,salsa,jams,etc...so far... 2 plastic jars of strawberry freezer jam lol. Next year I'll be better organized.

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    I don't stockpile much due to space limitations. If I did have space, I wouldn't use it for jams/jellies/pickles. A jar of jelly or jam will last me a year and other than sweet pickle relish in tuna salad or potato salad, I never eat pickles.

    Now what I would stockpile or can would be tomatoes. Lots of tomatoes! And other fresh veggies - green beans, peas, butterbeans. I might try my hand at pumpkin since I feed the dog pureed pumpkin everyday and I love all things made with pumpkin. Basically, fresh veggies.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I have two more cookie sheets full of bell peppers in the freezer and both dehydrators going full blast drying the apples from our tree.

    I've bought up enough meat to fill the big freezer. The pantry is stuffed with canned goods, mostly tomatoes, beans, and tomato sauce, also some veggies. The small freezer has a bunch of white whole wheat flour bought for .20/pound and various close-outs.

    I started a huge pot of cilantro and it's growing well. I hope we get a good harvest of that. Still need to start up some Aerogardens with tomatoes, peppers, herbs, salad greens, and flowers for our winter crops. I'm actually late doing that this year.

    We're pretty well set for winter except for the Aerogardens.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    Oops, I'm not Canadian. I live near Canada, does that count?

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    Registered User Libby's Avatar
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    From the garden, have a lot of zucchini, tomatoes and tomato sauce in the freezer.

    We don't do jams/jellies/pickles etc since we're not really into that. Also, I still buy store bought jams as I haven't quite fine tuned my jam making skills.

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    That counts SD, as I was after a comparison after all.

    I put my vegetables (pumpkin, tomatoes, etc.) in the freezer right now. I don't have a pressure canner, and I have limited shelf and freezer space. We got rid of our big freezer before I went on this GF, DF, SF diet and now, boy, do I wish I had it back! I could easily use a separate freezer just for meat and poultry, which I'd love to buy direct from a farmer.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    Stores still sell freezers.

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    Lots available secondhand online too. Just got to figure out where to put it! We got rid of the old one when we put the new windows in the basement (they were smaller and there was no way to get it out of the house once the new windows went in). We didn't really have room for it anyways. It jutted out into the utility/laundry room and I took my hip off every time I walked by with a load of laundry, and often without. BUT, I sure could use a second freezer.

    I think I'll start by using the freezer space we have more efficiently. Like replacing round containers with square ones. That might help. Get those gallon ice-cream buckets full of crabapples out of there. That would help too. But that would mean processing crabapples...and making room in the cold room for apple juice and applesauce. Hmm...could probably do that alright...just takes time...which I don't have right now. Maybe tomorrow...or next week.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spirit Deer View Post
    Oops, I'm not Canadian. I live near Canada, does that count?
    Me, either. But all summer long I wished I was in Canada. Does that count?

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    Sure SueBee.

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    peanut - it may sound wasteful but try to freeze things in freezer ziplocs and flat. (you can always wash out and reuse the non meat ones) Once frozen solid you can stack or line them up vertically and/or use $1 store baskets to get creative for storage in there. Saves a lot more room then you'd think!

    Also, if you do go the route of another freezer, try to get an upright - things don't get lost as easily.

    If you do use square containers - have you thought of using one of these in your regular fridge's freezer?

    Seville Organize It Expandable Kitchen Shelf 30" X 9" X 6" H Grey | Kitchen Stuff Plus

    OR this for the ziplocs?

    Seville Organize It Divided Pan/Board Rack 10" X 8.5" X 6" H Grey | Kitchen Stuff Plus

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    Right now, Libby, I just toss things in the freezer with little to no organization at all! Thanks for the links. I have a nice divider shelf in my upstairs fridge. Just got to be more creative about the containers everything is in.

    Ziplocs it is then. Mostly what I have is berries and fruit right now. Fruit in general gets very expensive in winter here, unless you like apples. Every now and then I like a break from them.

    Though I do have a fair amount of chicken stock in yogurt containers. Can that be frozen in ziploc bags too? I tried it once and ended up with a mess of ziploc bags stuck together. Had to unthaw a whole bunch of chicken stock to get what I wanted. I think it was condensation on the outside of the bags that caused a problem. They froze together. Any good ideas for freezing it?

    I need to put milk crates or something in my chest freezer to separate out things once they go in there. Or something. I need a system...I see another thread coming up...

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    I was in Canada this summer! Okay, it was barely in Canada and we didn't even go through Canadian customs, BUT I'M COUNTING IT!

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    Another garden failure this year due to building renos, and the neighbour's dog sneaking into my garden through the fence, and eating what little remained. Then blight took the 3 zuccini plants and all the rest of the cuc plants. So no zuccini this year, and only 3 cucs.
    Tightening the belt again, so just living off the stockpile, as is, but I did find some space in the freezer and made 5 loaves white bread last week, found some acorn mash I made a few years ago from Bur Oak acorns in the local park, and made some "Acorn Bread". Managed to harvest a few herbs from my garden and dried them in my dehydrator. Got a small bowl of tomatoes this year, after spending time and work and money for 14 tomato plants. Got a nice big bowl of potatoes from my 7 potato plants. Got 120 clumps of Valiant grapes from my grapevine, and froze them for later use...I beat the robins to them this year by covering the grapevine with chicken wire...they devoured all the grapes last year. I got about 4 gallon pails of Nanking Cherries from my 2 bushes this year...also learned a better way to process them...briefly chop in blender, then rub the mash through a colander, then use for cherry jam following the dry Pectin recipe...the best cherry jam I ever tasted! And I froze lots of tubs of prepared cherry mash for the winter. Got 4 1/2 jars of raspberry jam this year from my rasps. No black current jam though, because the wind knocked off the bumper crop before they ripened...aww. Got a taste of scarlet runner beans, a taste of cucs and tomatoes...so delicious!
    Went fishing and got 3 pike, 2 still left in the freezer; no berry picking this year...not well enough to struggle in the woods now, and was too busy with keeping up to all the hassles of the builders' renos.
    Didn't go to the Farmers Market this summer, due to high prices and no cash. Picking up a few good deals from the store bargain bin from time to time...bananas, apples. Not buying juice any more...just peeling and cooking an apple with water, then straining it for juice. Sometimes I process the apples and freeze slices for use in the winter. Also freeze bananas on a cookie sheet, and keep those in a plastic bag.
    Going into the winter so-so as far a food preps are concerned. Bought some more sugar, got some corn flakes and rice krispies on a good coupon deal, so have this for mixed cold cereal. Using up my pasta and Knorr Sidekicks for basic soup starter...it goes a long way.
    Found some good coupons for eggs, oatmeal, coffee.
    Not feeling too pressured though, kinda glad that I don't go to the store as often as before...enjoying my independence.
    I still have a long way to go to eat my way through the freezer contents, but I re-organized the freezer this summer, and feel much better knowing what I have in there.
    Would like to go fishing...and catch something...before winter comes again.
    Maybe next year will be better for gardening, if I'm still here at this apartment.
    What will be, will be.

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