What is the difference between Pressure Canning and Boiling water bath canning?
There are two basic types of canning methods: Pressure Canning and Boiling Water Bath Canning. The Pressure Canner method is specifically required for foods containing very little acid, such as vegetables, meats, and seafood. Pressure canning destroys bacteria and their by-products including salmonella, staphylococcus and the bacterium that causes botulism, all of which can thrive in low-acid foods. That's why these foods require the Pressure Canning method that reaches a temperature of at least 240º F. The Boiling Water Bath method can only be used for high-acid foods, including all fruits, tomatoes with added acid, sauerkraut and most foods to which vinegar has been added such as pickles and relishes.
Please note: The Pressure Canner method is safe for ALL of the foods listed above (high and low acid foods) whereas the boiling water bath is safe for high-acid foods only because boiling water reaches a maximum temperature of 212º F and cannot reach the necessary temperature needed to destroy certain bacteria found in low acid foods.
Is there a conversion for using the a boiling-water bath instead of a Pressure Canner when home canning low acid foods such as vegetables, meats poultry, soups, chili stews & seafood?
No, there is not a safe way to convert processing vegetables, meats, seafood and low-acid combination recipes from pressure canning to boiling water canning. Boiling water cannot reach the necessary temperature to destroy certain bacteria found in low-acid foods no matter how long they are processed for. Low-acid foods, with pH values higher than 4.6, must be processed at temperatures of 240°F for a specified length of time to destroy harmful bacteria. Because boiling-water canners cannot reach this temperature (boiling water will only reach a maximum temperature of 212º F) low-acid foods must be processed using pressure canner.
What kind of food can be canned in a pressure cooker?
All types of food including those considered part of both high and low acid food categories as described above. For instance, you can make chili, stew, soups, sauces or seafood as well as pickles, relish, condiments jams and jellies. Refer to the recipe book included with Fagor's home canning kit for a wide variety of such recipes.
Is home canning safe?
Unquestionably! Always be sure to follow directions and timing carefully. By doing so you'll always get delicious results without worry about spoiled food.
Do not attempt to guess or estimate cooking times when canning. All of the recipes included with Fagor's home canning kit have been carefully tested for use with the 10 qt Fagor Pressure Cooker/Canner. While you may have other home canning books or recipes considered to be family heirlooms or treasures, they may not always be safe to use. In 1989, the USDA updated their home canning guidelines based on safety and quality.
Therefore, a home canning book or recipe that was published before 1989 may be outdated and could affect the safety and quality of your home canned foods. Be sure the canning book or recipe you use complies with up-to-date guidelines. The Ball Blue Book of Preserving and the USDA’s Complete Guide to Home Canning offer up-to-date information and recipes
How long does Pressure canned food last?
Provided the food is stored in a cool, dry space such as a pantry - generally up to 1 year. However, as a precaution with all canned foods- whether processed at home or purchased at a grocery store - it is always a good idea to inspect food before consuming and discard immediately if there are any signs of unusual odor, leakage, mold or spoilage.
What kind of desserts can I make in a pressure cooker?
Pressure cookers are good for preparing any kind of dessert recipes that involves cooking, such as puddings and poached fruits, and even many recipes that you would normally prepare in an oven, such as cheesecakes, flans or custards.
What are the benefits of preparing desserts in a pressure cooker?
Some desserts –especially the ones that contain eggs- benefit from being prepared in a pressure cooker, because the internal temperature of the pressure cooker is relatively mild compared to the oven; this keeps the eggs from breaking down into solids and liquids and thus achieving a much smoother texture. Also, since the air inside the pressure cooker is very humid, desserts such as custards don’t get the typical skin on the top. Another important benefit is that you can enjoy a delicious refreshing cheesecake in much less time and without having to turn on the hot oven!
What are the ramekins for and what can I make in them?
The individual ramekins can be used for exactly the same recipes as the baking dish, but in individual portions. The recipes in the Dessert Recipe book have two lists of ingredients and two cooking times, so you can always choose whether you want one large dessert or four individual portions.
Can I only use the baking dish and ramekins in the pressure cooker?
This kit is especially designed to for the Fagor Pressure Cookers, but you can certainly use the silicone bakeware for other recipes in the oven or even in the microwave. If you are planning to use the kit with a different brand pressure cooker, take into consideration that cooking times might change due to the different pressure settings.