First, a question for you "old hands" at canning! Has anyone discovered a way to can pasta? I mean, like the cans of Campbell's or Chef Boy-ar-Dee, where you open up the can and there is your spaghetti with sauce? I'm sure that home-canned would be MUCH tastier as well as not having all the preservatives and food additives etc. I know that you need to pressure-can any sauce, especially with meat, for 90 mins, and it seems like that would make the pasta all mushy. So how would one do it so that it came out "al dente"? It would be nice to have jars of canned spaghetti and macaroni for those nights when you just want to open something and eat it right away! Thanks!
Now, here is a recipe for "Apple Pie In A Jar", or at least the "apple" part! I know it's early yet for apples, but when it's time you suddenly have bushels of apples, and you can only eat so much applesauce. I'd use wide-mouth jars for ease of emptying. A quart jar is the perfect amount for a regular pie.
This makes 7 quarts, perfect for the canner. Disclaimer: I just got this recipe and haven't tried it yet, but plan to.
10 cups of water
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup sieved cornstarch
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
3 TABLESPOONS fresh lemon juice (I would also grate in the lemon zest, because it gives that lovely "floral" note, and why just throw it away?)
Peeled and sliced apples
1) Make the Syrup: Put the water into a large heavy pot, stir in sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring, and continue boiling and stirring until the syrup is thick and bubbly. Then add the lemon juice (and zest).
2) Fill clean mason jars with apple slices, cover with syrup (leave the usual head-space, about where the screwy-swirls start at the top of the jar). Seal with hot lids/rings.
Process in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes. Voila!!
Of course you can add a little more sugar and spices to your syrup if the apples are on the sour side.
I imagine that this recipe could also be used as a guide for a peach pie recipe too, although I might use a bit more cornstarch since peaches get slurpy.