I've always been a little intimidated by canning. I really can't pinpoint why, I'm not sure if it's the preparation, the fear of contaminating my family with an improperly canned food, or what. And it seems that every good Mormon woman knows how to can. I think they may be born with it. I, being a convert, obviously do not have this innate ability and have felt for some time that I had some catching up to do. So, I threw my fears out the door, sucked it up and bought a canning bath (ie, a large pot with a rack inside). To be honest, despite my concerns I was a little excited. I felt like by purchasing the canning bath I had joined some elite club and my membership would be advanced once I actually used the darn thing.
A few weeks ago, one of our local grocery stores had a huge sale on boxes of peaches (you know you live in Utah when grocery stores have "canning sales" or "food storage sales"). I visited this store a few times before actually making the purchase. Then, I brought the peaches home with the intention to can the next day, but life happens and a few days later we had eaten half the box. So, I canned half a box of peaches. I really did. And it wasn't so bad. A little time consuming, but well worth it. I couldn't stop staring at my cans of peaches. I felt like a little child who just has to show anyone who will look her newest piece of artwork, or how fast she can spin. I'm sure I made Andy look at the jars a dozen times. I told all my friends, posted it on Facebook... hey, it was a pretty big accomplishment for this canning idiot!
So, my fears assuaged, I've now become canning obsessed and can't stop thinking about what I'm going to can next. Today, my friend Carlee and I made applesauce. Apples were on sale, we love the sauce, our kids love the sauce. Piece of cake. I gotta say, I definitely preferred the apples to the peaches... easier, less messy and the outcome was much prettier (my peaches taste good, but look a little sad).
Ava, being the big kitchen helper she is wanted to get in on the action and helped mash the apples, which we actually left a little chunky... our preference. For the record, I also like a few lumps in my mashed potatoes... but I will not be canning them.
Tonight, the applesauce is sitting, cooling and thanking Carlee and me for creating it in all its beautiful canned glory. Tomorrow, we eat!