27 Pints of Canned Green Beans

We at Green Cedars Farm are not completely sustainable.  We depend on several other local farms to provide us with fresh raw milk, assistance at various times, and especially with additional produce.

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 We purchased almost a bushel of green beans from a good friend of ours who grows lots of produce.  In my opinion, these beans are worth their weight in gold!  Today, I canned them to help feed the family through the next year.  We had some fresh green beans for supper last night (along with squash, new potatoes, pork chops, and biscuits) and it was delicious!

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It is such a joy to know where our food comes from and to know exactly how it was grown and processed.  We value our food so much more when we know how much work has gone into growing and harvesting it.  And we feel so rich when we see a pantry full of home-canned food! 

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Canning can be a daunting task, but really isn’t so hard.  Most canners come with instructions and there are multiple books, such as the Blue Ball Book Guide to Preserving, that have recipes.  Of course, it’s always easier to get with a good cook who’s done it before to observe the process.  I’ve been fortunate to learn from my mother, who learned it from her mother-in-law as well as trial-and-error.

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Canning Green Beans Step-by-step:  First acquire fresh beans, either from your own garden or from a local farmer.  Snap off the ends and then snap the bean into equal bite-sized pieces.  (You can give the ends to the pigs or chickens).  Wash the beans (I refrigerated mine overnight), then cover with boiling water for 5 minutes, pack into hot clean jars (I did pint jars) leaving 1 inch of space at the top of the jar, add 1/2 teaspoon of salt and then fill with hot water or cooking liquid (what the beans were cooked in), leaving 1 inch at the top of the jar.  Place the lids in boiling water and then place on the jar and screw on a band finger-tight.  Place the jars in a pressure canner with 2-3 inches of water simmering and lock the lid.  Allow to vent for 10 minutes, then place 10 pounds of pressure on and process for 20 minutes.  Turn the heat off and allow the pressure to drop naturally, then remove the gauge and allow to cool an additional ten minutes before opening.  Then remove the jars to a dry towel to cool.  Each pop of the lid as the jars seal is a reason to celebrate!

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Left jar is a can of green beans that has not been pressure cooked.  The jar on the right has been processed.

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