Gardening Articles: Edibles :: Vegetables

Canning Beans (page 2 of 3)

by National Gardening Association Editors

Hot Pack

Snap beans: Put clean, trimmed beans in a pot and cover them with boiling water. Boil the beans for five minutes. Pack the hot beans into hot jars, and cover the beans with the cooking liquid, leaving one inch of headspace. The beans won't shrink during processing. Continue the canning procedure as detailed for cold-packed snap beans.

Green shell or soybeans: Wash and shell the beans. Put the shelled beans into a pot and cover them with boiling water. Boil the beans for three minutes, then put the hot beans into hot jars. Cover the beans with the cooking liquid and continue the canning procedure as detailed for cold-packed snap beans.

Dried shell beans: It's not too common to home can dried shell beans. But if you want any presoaked beans on hand for a quick chili, try canning some. Any variety of dried beans can be canned. After soaking the beans, boil them for 30 minutes. Pack the hot beans into hot jars, and continue the canning procedure as outlined for cold-packed snap beans.

6. Process the jars of beans in a pressure canner. Process only the number of jars your pressure canner can accommodate at one time. Put the canner on the burner, and put the jars on the rack in the canner. Add two inches of water to the canner, boiling for hot-packed jars, just hot for cold-packed ones. Allow enough space between the jars and the sides of the pot that steam flows freely. Clamp on the lid securely.

Leaving the valve or petcock open, set the canner over high heat until steam has escaped for 10 minutes. Now close the petcock or put on the weighted gauge, and let the pressure rise to 10 pounds. Start timing and keep adjusting the heat, so that the pressure remains constant. If the pressure drops below 10 pounds, the processing time must be started again.

To familiarize yourself with the canner, try staging a dress rehearsal. Put a quart of water in the canner, and bring it up to 10 pounds of pressure. Notice how much heat is required to maintain constant pressure and how long -- using hot water -- it takes to return to zero pressure. Let the canner cool naturally. Do not run it under cold water as you may with ordinary pressure cookers.

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