I love learning and experiencing new adventures! I visited with Grandpa Frank and Marjorie in Portland for the long weekend. Marjorie invited me to learn a new skill: pressure canning. Each year, she and her grandson, Alex can fresh tuna to enjoy throughout the year. At the peak of last canning season, your Grandpa surprised me with a new pressure canner. I was a bit overwhelmed with all the (what I thought were) technical instructions. There are certain low-acid foods that you are not able to preserve in a hot water bath canner (green beans, corn, meat, etc.) No better way to learn but in the shadow of an expert, right?
We began the journey by driving down to Eugene to pick up the tuna from the fish market. On the way, we stopped at an apple orchard owned by Marjorie’s brother Jim and his wife Diana. We meandered up and down between the rows of apple trees – over 5 acres and they have lost count of how many trees are planted! As we were leaving, we went through the front yard and came across this beautiful Italian Prune Tree.
“Prune Tree??” I said. I always thought prunes are dried plums! Look at how colorful they are! The insides were a golden color and so sweet! Grandpa Frank ate a couple on the drive home and Marjorie made a fresh prune-apple cake that was delicious!
The next day began our pressure canning adventure. I was so excited, I forgot to take pictures except for the final product when I arrived home:
The liquid that you see is from the tuna; no extra oil added – just tuna and a touch of salt. Marjorie showed me how to cut up the tuna into large chunks and pack it into the jars. Alex added 1/2 tsp of salt to each 10 oz. jar and then heated up the lids and screwed on the caps. It was really just so easy! The hardest part is watching for the correct pressure as the cans process for 90 minutes. Alex kept a close eye on the pressure dial and let us know when it wavered. We let the jars sit in the canner till the next day and then checked closely for seals. Only 1 jar did not seal and we happily munched on tuna sandwiches! I can’t wait till next season to can homegrown green beans!