Monthly Reminder: Check Your Jars

mason jars

With the 2014 Gardening season in full swing, you may have already started to add to your canned produce supply.  Even if you haven’t, here are a few things you may want to consider before things get too far along:

  • take stock of what you have.  What are you running low on or have too much of?
  • are you short of or beyond blessed with a certain kind of jar size?
  • what are some of the things you canned last year that were a hit?  which did you family have to be coerced into eating? (You may not want to can that last group this year.  Just a suggestion.)
  • do you have leftover supplies from last year that need to be used up this year?
  • is there anything left in your freezer that you want to can or cook before this season’s fruits/vegetables become ripe?

While you are looking at what you have canned up, make sure you follow the FIFO rule – First In, First Out.  Move the jars from the 2013 season to the front and add new jars from 2014 to the back.  This way you will avoid the wonderful surprise of 5 year old jar of peaches that now look more like creamed corn.  (Can you name the movie that comment was inspired by?)

After spending all the time canning produce from your garden or elsewhere, the last thing you want to happen is to have jar go bad and not realize it till you “smell thing funky” when you go to your pantry.

Take a few minutes to look over the jars you have.

Are they all still sealed?

Do any need to be wiped down?  If so, do it now before you forget.

If any have gone bad, dump the contents and sanitize the jars.  Check for chips before storing them till they are needed again.

Happy canning!