Home Food Storage
Canning and using meat
Why can meat?
Laziness – My favorite. Invest a little time up front for a whole lot of “easy” later.
Taste – It taste sooooo good.
Cost – buying meat on sale/in bulk usually results in much lower cost.
Comfort – knowing that you have food on the shelf that will feed your family is always a good feeling.
Obedience – “Our Heavenly Father created this beautiful earth, with all its abundance, for our benefit and use. His purpose is to provide for our needs as we walk in faith and obedience. He has lovingly commanded us to ‘prepare every needful thing’ (see D&C 109:8) so that, should adversity come, we may care for ourselves and our neighbors and support bishops as they care for others. ( https://www.lds.org/topics/food-storage?lang=eng )
Whatever ends up being your motivation, you can’t lose.
How do you can pressure can meat?
There are four basic agents of food spoilage—enzymes, mold, yeast, and bacteria. Canning interrupts the natural spoilage cycle so food can be preserved safely. Molds, yeast, and enzymes are destroyed at temperatures below 212°F, the temperature at which water boils (except in mountainous regions). Therefore, boiling water processing is sufficient to destroy those agents.
Bacteria, however, are not as easily destroyed. The bacteria, Clostridium botulinum produces a spore that makes a poisonous toxin which causes botulism. This spore is not destroyed at 212°F. In addition, the bacteria thrive on low acid foods in the absence of air.
In pressure canning, some of the water in the pressure canner is converted to steam, which creates pressure within the canner. As pressure increases, temperature increases, 5 pounds pressure—228°F, 10 pounds pressure—240°F, 15 pounds pressure—250°F. This pressurized heat destroys the potentially harmful bacteria spores. As the jars cool, a vacuum is formed, sealing the food within and preventing any new microorganisms from entering and spoiling the food.
The Steps – Raw Pack
Buy meat, cut it up, fill jars, process jars, eat, rinse (actually wash) and repeat. Couldn’t be easier.
§         Check pressure canner.
§         Prepare jars & lids.
§         Remove excess fat.
§         Add canning salt to jars.
o ½ teaspoon salt to each pint.
o 1 teaspoon to each quart.
§         Canning salt is a fine-grained salt and is iodine-free. It does not have the anti-caking additive (Calcium silicate) used in regular table salt.
§         Fill jars with raw meat pieces, leaving 1-inch headspace. As a rule of thumb, a one quart jar will hold approximately two pounds of raw meat. DO NOT ADD LIQUID. Adjust jar lids/rings “finger tight”.
§         Place 3 quarts of water, canning rack, and jars in canner. Always use canning rack. Jars may break if set directly on bottom of canner. (When doing pints, jars can be “stacked” with an additional canning rack between layers).
§         To prevent water stains on jars, add 2 tablespoons white vinegar to water in canner. This is especially needed with our “hard” Mesa water.
§         Using a relatively high heat setting, heat the pressure canner until a steady flow of steam can be seen, heard, or felt coming from the vent pipe.
§         The air vent and or cover lock is a visual indicator of the presence of pressure.
§         Exhaust air from the canner for 10 minutes by allowing steam to flow from the vent pipe. Reduce heat, if necessary, to maintain a steady, moderate flow of steam.
§         Process at 10 pounds pressure. Processing time begins when the pressure gauge registers the correct pressure.
o 75 minutes for Pints
o 90 minutes for Quarts
Adjust heat to maintain correct pressure on the dial gauge. If pressure drops below desired setting, it will be necessary to bring pressure to the correct setting and begin processing countdown from the beginning for the full amount of time.
§         At the end of processing time, turn burner to “off” and remove canner from heat source.
§         Let pressure drop of its own accord. Do not attempt to speed the cooling of the canner, which can cause jar breakage, liquid loss from the jars and other problems. Pressure is completely reduced when the air vent/cover lock and overpressure plug have dropped and no steam escapes when the pressure regulator is lifted. Do not use the dial gauge as an indicator for when pressure is completely reduced.
§         When pressure has been completely reduced, remove pressure regulator from vent pipe and let canner cool for 10 minutes.
§         Remove jars from canner. Set jars upright on board or cloth, away from draft to cool.
§         When jars are cold, test the seal (button on lid), remove bands, wash/wipe jars, label, date, and store in a cool, dry place.
Helpful Tips
§         Bubbles often appear in the jar after it is removed from canner because food is still boiling in jar. Ordinarily bubbles do not appear once the product has been allowed to thoroughly cool.
§         Jar breakage during processing is caused by: (1) Packing jar too solidly or overfilling; (2) Weakened, cracked jars; (3) Jars touching bottom of canner; (4) Lids improperly tightened; (5) Use of poor quality jars.
§         Liquid lost from jars during processing is caused by: (1) Packing jar too solidly or overfilling; (2) Insufficient exhaust period; (3) Variation or sudden lowering of temperature in the canner. When processing food, pressure regulator should not be taken off the vent pipe and cover should not be removed until air vent/cover lock has dropped and pressure has been completely reduced; (4) Failure to adjust jar lids according to manufacturer’s directions.
§         The loss of liquid from jars during processing may be unattractive but it will not affect the safety of the food as long as the jar was processed correctly and is sealed.
§         It is better to over process food than under process. Under processing may result in spoilage and unsafe food.
§         Food spoilage or jars not sealing is caused by: (1) Failure to follow exact timetables and recipes; (2) Failure to wipe sealing edge of jar clean before placing lid on jar; (3) Foods, seeds, or grease lodged between lid and jar; (4) Jars which are nicked or cracked or have sharp sealing edges; (5) Failure to adjust jar lids according to manufacturer’s directions; (6) Turning jars upside down while jars are cooling and sealing.
§         The black deposit sometimes found on the underside of a lid is caused by tannins in the food or hydrogen sulfide which is liberated from the food by the heat of processing. This does not indicate spoilage.
§         If a jar does not seal, use the food at once, freeze or repack using different lids. Reprocess for the full recommended processing time.
§         Two-piece vacuum caps seal by the cooling of the contents of the jar, not through pressure of the screw band on the lid. Therefore, although the screw band is firmly tight, the jar is not sealed until cooled. During processing, the flexible metal lid permits air to be exhausted from the jar.
§         Adjust two-piece vacuum caps by screwing bands down evenly and firmly until a point of resistance is met–fingertip tight. Do not use undue exertion.
§         It is not necessary for the liquid on canned meats to congeal. The liquid will congeal only when there is a large amount of gelatin from cartilage or connective tissue present.
What do you with the canned meat?
Don’t just look at it… eat it.
Recipes for using your Pressure Canned Meat
What do you need to do pressure canning?
Canning Equipment & Supplies
There are numerous online and local outlets to buy both equipment and supplies.
I find that on a day to day basis that Wal-Mart generally has the best price on bottles and lids. Occasionally Ace Hardware will either run a really good sale or have a good coupon which will beat out the Wal-Mart price. You just have to keep your eyes open for a deal. Once you have invested in your jars you seldom have to replace them (unless you give them away or use them for drinking glasses).
§         Bottles/Jars – Buy good quality Kerr or Mason jars. Jars can be used over and over.
§         Rings – these come with the jars but can be purchased separately if they are lost or ruined.
§         Lids – are only single use and are sold separately.
Equipment is also available from numerous online and local stores. It ranges is price and quality. You can buy the Cadillac or the economy sedan. Both will do the job but will vary of course in price and durability. I knew exactly what I wanted/needed so I purchased my equipment from Amazon. They had a great price for good equipment and I let the UPS guy bring it to my door.

Helpful Resources
Amazon – (http://www.amazon.com/ )
LDS Provident Living Web Site - http://www.providentliving.org/self-reliance
Presto - http://www.gopresto.com/recipes/canning/index.php
Canning Class Info - http://www.inkrustandsawdust.blogspot.com/2012/10/pressure-canning-meat.html

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