Monday, July 23, 2012

Garden Preserves & 100th Post

What better way to celebrate my 100th post on Searching For Simple than with one of Stephen's Grandmother's canning recipes.  It's one of the first ones I tasted, and one that baby Zac was introduced to early in his life (I wish I had photos of his deliciously purple face!).  I put together a step-by-step so that you, too, can enjoy this wonderful dish.

Grandma Tueller's Pickled Beets
24 small beets (or the equivalent)
3 medium onions
2 C white vinegar
1 C water
1.25 C sugar
2 Tbsp salt
6 whole cloves
1 3 inch stick of cinnamon

Cook the beets.  Grandma liked to boil them, I prefer to roast them.  Either way, cook them in their skins.  When done and cool enough to hold, peel the beets with your hands, using a paring knife to cut away difficult spots.  Then slice them.
All roasted & ready to peel.
Peeling.  Yes, my hands are pink now. 

Peeled, ready to slice.

Bring vinegar, water, sugar, salt and spices (placed in a spice bag, you don't want these floating out on their own for this recipe) to a boil.  Stir in sliced onions and beets.  Boil for 5 minutes.

Bottle in clean bottles with hot lids.  Put in boiling water bath (or steam canner--NOT a pressure cooker!) for five minutes.*

Let cool and sit for 24 hours to ensure seal.  Then label and put on shelves for future storage. 
Makes 5 pints.
*Current Blue Book of Canning states that it should be processed for 40 minutes.  I think this is a little excessive, as grandma has never poisoned anyone (and we've already cooked the beets twice by now!).  However, to be safe, if you want to go for 15, I don't think it'd hurt anything, and if you really want to go for 40, that's fine.  I don't.

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