Cabbage Pickle: A Canning Twist on Asian Food or Just Good Eats!

20150719_9Cabbage Pickle

I am a big fan of sauerkraut so when I was at a local farmers market and someone had quite a few large heads of cabbage I couldn’t resist and bought what he had left, 3 monster heads, probably about 2 lbs each! Great! I can make more kraut (which I tend to give away a lot of because so few people make it now). But while at the market I also found a local community cookbook just published and flipping through it, wow! A treasure of old time recipes how could I resist? So I bought that too thinking surely there will recipes I can translate into canning and sure enough, I found one called Cabbage Pickle. No, its not kraut but pickled cabbage!

Lately I have become interested in Asian food and knew this would be a great basis for many recipes since they use a lot of fermentation in their cooking and pickling is one great way to get the taste without the time involved fermenting. So into the kitchen we go

Very simple and easy to do!

Taken from “The Mixing Bowl, County of Bath Community Cookbook” 2014 edition.

Original recipe submitted by Allie Lucinda Hull whose grandmother Annie Jane Kincaid Burns made.

If interested in the original recipe please email me, and I will email you it. I adapted the original recipe to what I had on hand.

For information on how to use an electric canner please click here (coming soon!)


1 large head of Cabbage

1 large Onion

1 large Tomato

Makes approximately 8 pints of cabbage pickle

Favorite pickling solution…personally I used a new product by White House called Canning Vinegar and followed the directions on the back. Made it super easy to pickle this! (Dill Flavored)


And of course your water bath canning supplies…get it all ready to go!





Get jars and lids ready to pack.

Get pickling solution ready and keep on a simmer while you:

Dice the cabbage, onions and tomatoes to your taste. I kept mine to about 1/4 or so in size. Mix well in a bowl.






Stuff, and I mean STUFF your pink jars with the cabbage mixture to about the ½ inch mark (headspace). Don’t be afraid to really pack your jars full!

Next, ladle your hot pickling solution into the jars leaving ½ inch head space.


Wipe the rims of the jars and add lids.

Next, follow your typical canning instruction for water bath canning the traditional way for pickles, not kraut (the acidity level is for pickles so you are safe on using the pickle time).

After processing the appropriate time (10 minutes for elevations below 1,000 feet, 15 minutes for elevations above 1,000 ft) remove and allow to cool.


That simple!



After cooling we just had to try it out. Wow! Tasty by itself even but it  was really great served cold as a small side with a grilled steak too.

I can just imagine stir frying it up with some seafood or the such too over a bed or rice.

Tell me how you used this!



The Crazy Canners

You Can Can Cheese! And Dehydrate! How to Preserve Your Own Cheeses


Alright, I am an admitted cheese hound…don’t believe I have met any cheese that I didn’t like but I always thought for long term storage that you either had to keep it refrigerated or as someone I know did on TV, you had to wax it for long term storage. OR you had to buy the freeze dried stuff at something close to a mortgage payment. Imagine this…you can CAN any cheese (water bath or pressure) or dehydrate it as I did previously with cottage cheese. And do so safely! Ssshhh! Don’t tell the food police I said that!

Pretty straight forward…I love cheddar cheese but this will work with ANY type of cheese.
Place your chosen cheese on a fruit leather tray thinly and dehydrate at 125 degrees until crunchy and vacuum seal!

There is a catch however. If you use regular cheese you will have to deal with the ‘fat’ that comes out of it. Originally I thought I would get smart and well, put paper towel under it while dehydrating but when I checked it half way through some had ‘melted’ to it. So don’t that at home folks…instead, dehydrate and after doing so place on a towel and pat the oil off and then vacuum seal! Each pouch contains approximately 1 lb of shredded cheddar cheese. Great crunchy snack by the way!

Next, I got squirrelly and tried canning it. You can can any cheese! Quartz, pints or half pints…it up to you as is the method either water bath OR Pressure canner. It is recommended for best results as to texture, taste and color to use the water bath method and here is how you do it:

Just like canning anything you will want sterilized jars and lids…get your canning water going so that it is ready and the lids too.

You will then take your clean jars and place them into a pan or pot that is big enough to hold the empty jars. Next, fill the pot/pan with enough water to get the water level at least 1/3 of the way up the side of the jars.

Turn on the heat and add small amounts of cheese (either shredded or cubed, I used shredded) to each jar, stirring occasionally as it melts. Add more cheese and allow to melt and so on until you have the jars full of melted cheese leaving ½ inch head space.
I used a clean butter/dinner knife to stir.
Turn off the heat. Because most cheese is ‘greasy’ I used straight vinegar to clean the jar lips and ring area. Then add the lids and rings as you usually would. Finger tight and then place into the canner.

If you choose to use the water bath method as I did here are the processing times:
Start the time once it comes back to a boil.

Pints and half pints for 30 minutes
Quartz for 45 minutes

If you are using a pressure canner please remember to build up the pressure as normal and then bring to proper pressure then start your time:

Less than 1,000 feet in elevation:
Quartz: 10 minutes at 10 lbs pressure
Pints and half pints: 5 minutes at 10 lbs pressure

Over 1,000 feet in elevation:
Quartz: 10 minutes at 15 lbs pressure
Pints and half pints: 5 minutes at 15 lbs pressure.

Final product:

As always, remember to carefully take out, place on a towel and cover to allow the processed jars to cool and seal properly. Once cool they will solidify again and presto! Real canned cheese!

Note: best to use wide mouth jars for ease of getting back out!

always faithful

Family Italian Style Sausage Pasta Soup Mix Canned


Italian Style In a Jar

In a previous life I was with a true blooded Italian boy (yes, in this lifetime and yes I deliberately use the term boy and not ‘man’ ). He loved to eat Italian food and for the life of me I can’t remember what specific meal he wanted but this is what it morphed into that can either be served as a ‘soup’ or a ‘topping’. Everyone who has ever eaten this always comes back for more so I thought I would can it. Now of course you can’t can pasta (at least not that I know, if you do, please let me know!) but this is the basis for my Italian style dish.

For good eats you will either make it into a soup by putting the canned mix into a beef broth base and adding pasta and cooking (about 2 cups of pasta per quart jar) until pasta is done OR by cooking your choice of pasta (about 2 cups per quart jar) and ladling your canned Italian mix over it including the juice/broth from the jar.

Each quart jar makes a hearty 2 person serving.

You know what to do to get your jars ready!

What you will need to make 7 quarts of this absolutely YUMMY and tasty dish is:

7 Quart canning jars and lids
5 lbs Italian or Bratwurst Sausage
5 ounces of dried chopped onion flakes (or if you prefer 6 finely chopped fresh)
½ gallon beef broth (I cheat by using bullion cubes)
8 ounces Parmesan cheese
1 lb quick prepared beans of your choice
boiled for 2 minutes, sit for an hour if you do it any other way you will wind up with MUSH!!!
4 Cans of diced tomatoes (the equivalent of fresh your choice)
2 cups minced garlic
4 Tablespoons powdered garlic
4 Tablespoons powdered onion

To prepare:

Prepare your choice of beans according to pack for the ‘quick’ soak method. Do not use the overnight method! I have found this will cause mushy beans as too much water is absorbed. Basically you are putting your dried beans into enough water, bringing to a boil for 2-3 minutes and then removing from heat to set to the side while you do the rest of prepping for this recipe.

Cut up your Italian/Bratwurst sausage into bite size pieces and place into a large pan to cook. I typically use whatever type of this sausage I can find on clearance including turkey sausage. Cook it! Stop short of over cooking. You want to keep it from hard browning (crispy) but cook it!

While you are cooking up your sausage bites get your broth going. You want this to be ‘boiling’ so that when you fill your jars you have hot broth to add.

Now the easy part! Put your onions, tomatoes, garlic and Parmesan cheese and stir well.
Drain your beans and add to your sausage mix. Stir/Mix well. Now add your powdered garlic and onion. Again MIX WELL. Typically I just wash my hands well and get right in there to make sure everything is mixed well spoons just don’t seem to work that well for me in such large batches.

Now to the fun part! Get your hot canning jars out and evenly distribute your sausage mix into the 7 quart canning jars. Ladle your hot beef broth into the jars to 1 inch head space. Be sure you use a knife to stir each jar to make sure you get the air out and the right amount of broth in each jar.

Wipe rims, put the lids on and put into your canner for 70 minutes processing time. You know what to do next!

To serve:
There are a couple of ways to serve this delicious dish, soup or pasta topping. See above.
As always, make sure you bring this delicious Italian mix to a boil for a few minutes before serving over pasta of your choice. If making a ‘soup’ no worries! You will heat this up enough by cooking the pasta. One note: if you are making a soup you will want to season to taste by adding additional garlic and onion powder.

For this post I used macaroni (which was an interesting happening when I tried to get it out…let’s just say the container lid didn’t hold and I had a mess) but you can use whatever you have on hand. That is old style Italian…use what you got! Feel free to experiment using different types of meat. I would imagine this would lend well to any type of meat you have!

Break the rules and eat good!
Survivingshtmom and VaCreepinOutdoors

Pressure Canned Sweet and Sour Chicken


I like to play around with my canning. I often find great deals on meat at the grocery store and given how expensive meat has become I will pick up every reduced priced piece of meat they have. But what I have run into is a complete lack of canning recipes for ‘meals’. Yes, there are soups out there and your traditional ‘how to can meat’ but a meal? Not much so I have turned to traditional meals and other types of recipes from old cook books and have found that I can can most of it so that all I have to do is add rice or pasta or something else for a fast and delicious meal.

We like Chinese food, especially sweet and sour chicken but it can be time consuming to make it for dinner and I thought: ‘why not pressure can it?’ so we can heat and eat. It is super easy to do and tastes delicious over rice.
The following recipe is enough for 7 quarts which is about 2-3 people over rice.

Get all your supplies ready. 7 quart jars, lids, pressure canner, etc. PLEASE! Remember that the new Ball Canning Lids do NOT get boiled any more. Simply wash and get them ‘warm’. I like to put them in a pan and turn my stove on the ‘melt’ setting. If you boil the new lids you might just find out down the road that they won’t stay sealed.

What you will need for the recipe:
5 lbs of raw chicken thigh meat (or breast if that is what you have)
2 lbs of shredded carrots
1 large can of crushed pineapple
3 small cans of water chestnuts
2 medium onions
2 Cans of corn
Sweet and Sour Sauce (make your own or if you want you can buy a jar of it)

Remember, a recipe is but a suggestion! Add or subtract to your taste.

First, cut up your raw chicken into bite sized chunks. Place into large container (I tend to use my water bath canner for mixing up large batches of food).
Chop up to your taste the onions and add to the chicken.
Add your shredded carrots

Next, get your sweet and sour broth going. I use a 4 quart sauce pan and typically will put 3 quarts of water into it and then add whatever flavoring I will use. I got lucky and found a bunch of pre-made sauces and marinades for 99 cents each. A few were sweet and sour marinades. So I added 2 12 ounce bottles to the 3 quarts of water and stirred well and brought to a boil and then turned down to a simmer while I finished up the food part.

Drain your crushed pineapple into the simmering sweet and sour water.
Drain your water chestnuts into the simmering sweet and sour water.
Drain your corn into the simmering sweet and sour water.

Next, dump your crushed pineapple and water chestnuts in with the carrots, chicken and onions. Mix well.

Now you are ready to can.

Evenly distribute your chicken mix into the 7 jars.
Pour your sweet and sour broth to about ½ inch head space.
Stir using a knife to get out air pockets and bubbles. Add more broth if necessary.
Clean the lip of jar with vinegar.
Place lids and rings on.
Put jars into canner as usual and you know what to do next.

Processing time is 70 minutes at 10 lbs pressure. And YES that is more than adequate to get the chicken thoroughly cooked!
Allow to cool as usual.

To use:
Simply open jar and heat up while you are cooking your rice! Put over rice and enjoy!

Have fun canning!

Legacy Green Beans and Bacon Presevered Pressure Can Style


20141007_6Green beans…these are so easy to grow and are often prolific producers. So how can you preserve them? Canning and freezing are our favorite ways.

Canning fresh green beans is easy…but VaCreepinOutdoors and myself, we love to can them like our grandmothers did. With BACON! Yes, you can safely can green beans with bacon. My grandmother died when I was 8 years old. One legacy she left was a TON of canned fruits and veggies. My family got some of them and some were pressure canned green beans with bacon. Sadly, I opened and ate the last remaining jar of these about 8 years ago. I am now 42 🙂 and they were still delicious!!! VaCreepin remembers his mom’s and grandmothers canned beans this article is in their memory and we hope you will give this a try and make it a tradition in your family too!

What you…

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Pressure Canning Homemade Sweet Saurkraut and Sausage



Homemade Sweet Saurkraut and Sausage Canned

Who doesn’t like sauerkraut? Okay, I know a few who don’t but its usually because of, well, what I shall call the ‘pucker’ factor. Its is ‘sour’ after all and most store bought kraut is very salty too. But in my quest for the ultimate, who wouldn’t like it sauerkraut I found a way to make ‘sweet’ sauerkraut and you can add whatever meat you want to it too! PLUS you can pressure can it to put up for a delicious meal or snack anytime. And as a bonus, there is no ‘waiting’ around for it to mature. Most canned sauerkraut recipes you either ferment the cabbage before canning it or are told to wait 10 days or more after canning fresh cabbage to get the ‘kraut’. But this, is instant and yummy.

What you will need:
Canning Jars (7 quart or 14 pint)

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Can Your Butter! Water Bath Canning Real Butter


20141020_5Need a great way to keep real butter safe? Can IT! Yes, you can can butter, safely, effectively and it’s a great way to save freezer space and/or refrigerator space plus put some up just in case the hard times hit.

I will note, this works for REAL BUTTER ONLY. Do not use ‘butter’ that isn’t real, the result will be a mess.

What you will need:
Water Bath Canner
Pint or ½ Pint Canning Jars
Pot to melt butter in.
Small Towel

Prior to beginning melting your butter, be sure your lids are clean. DO NOT simmer your lids continuously, the lids you find now on store shelves do NOT require this and in fact you face seal failure if you keep them simmering. I will place my lids into a pot of water being to a boil and the minute they ‘boil’ I take them…

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