Lately I’ve been posting about canning and fermenting a lot and included some of my own recipes. Please note, though, that I am by no means an expert at preserving food. I frequently refer to things as “experiments” because that is exactly what they are– a good outcome is not guaranteed! If you’d like to use my recipes please go right ahead but do so with the knowledge that a) you may not have the same results as me and b) what you do end up with MAY NOT BE SAFE TO EAT. Clearly, I have yet to kill myself or anyone that I’ve fed my canned and/or fermented foods to but that doesn’t guarantee their safety. Please do not ever follow a recipe you find online for preserving foods without first doing some research into safe food preservation. The National Center for Food Preservation is my go-to source for safe food preservation practices. The Ball Blue Book also has a great reputation though I haven’t used it myself. Most of my canning experience is with water bath canning so I generally only can foods with high levels of sugar (jams/jellies) or acid (pickles, tomatoes) and always water bath for a minimum of 10 minutes (longer if the center for food preservation recommends it).
Fermented foods can be upsetting to some digestive systems even if they are technically safe to eat. If you don’t normally eat fermented or probiotic rich foods its generally best to start with small quantities or be prepared for a bit of digestive unrest (i.e. lots of gas and frequent trips to the restroom). This doesn’t mean the food has gone bad, just that your body needs to adjust to a new diet. If there is one thing that my sheep and goats have taught me is that its important to change diets slowly to give the digestive system to adapt. Thankfully a sudden change is much less likely to kill a human than a goat!
If in doubt, recipes for canned goods can always be kept in the fridge or freezer for extra safety and/or can be cooked prior to eating.