Thursday, January 15

Bean Soup

Canning Bean Soup

Our busiest canning "season" is during the summer and autumn months while we are harvesting our garden vegetables.
But during the winter months, we love lots of soups and stews.
Usually, when I cook, I try to make enough for two meals to save time later.  Half we eat now, and half gets frozen or canned for a convenient meal later.  For soup, I make a large stock pot full and have plenty left over to can.

Having jars of soup in the pantry, ready to just heat up is a huge time saver and works just wonderful for a cold winter day meal.  Just grab one or two jars from the shelf and heat.  Add a side salad or sandwich and you have an easy no fuss meal! And one without the added sodium, additives and preservatives found in commercially canned soups.

And the great part?  Beans are a low-cost meal packed with high nutritional valve!
Beans are an excellent source of cholesterol-lowering fiber and provide a virtually fat-free high-quality protein.  They're also a very good source of folate, manganese and vitamin B1 as well as the minerals phosphorus, copper, magnesium and iron.

The navy bean got its current popular name because it was a staple food of the United States Navy in the early 20th century. These small white beans are perfect for making baked beans and soups.
The navy bean and the great northern are used interchangeably.

Wash beans and boil
1.  Presoaking has been found to reduce the raffinose-type oligosaccharides, sugars associated with causing flatulence.

2.  Ball Blue Book suggests it takes approximately 2 to 2 ¼ pounds of dried beans per quart jar.

3.  You can also add chopped carrots and celery, minced garlic, a little sugar, or use chicken broth instead of water.

4.  You MUST use a pressure canner to can beans. Anytime you can low-acid foods like beans or meat, you need a pressure canner to reach the higher temperatures that kill the botulism bacteria.

5.  Caution, do not add noodles or other pasta, rice, flour, cream, milk or other thickening agents to home canned soups.

Canning Bean Soup

What You’ll Need:

  •  Dried great northern or navy beans
  • Water
  • Chopped onion (if desired)
  • Diced ham (if desired)
  • Salt and pepper (if desired)
  • Quart mason jars with lids and rings
  • A pressure canner and canning tools
If desired, add diced ham and onions

How to Can:
Prepare your pressure canner according to Manufacturer’s instructions.
Rinse and sort through beans, removing any, soft, discolored or bad beans.
Place bean in a large stockpot and add water to cover the beans by 2 inches.
Boil 2 minutes, remove from heat and allow to soak for 1 hour.

Fill jars 3/4 full with beans

(An alternative method is to soak beans overnight then proceed to the following step)
Drain and place beans back in the large stock pot and cover with approximately 2 inches of fresh water.
Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Slow boil for about 30 minutes. Watch carefully that they do not boil over or burn on the bottom.  Reduce heat and simmer.

Add hot bean water

Beans will not be cooked all the way when you put them in the jars.  They will finish cooking while in the pressure canner.
While beans are cooking wash and sterilize the canning jars, and keep them hot. 
If desired, add a few pieces of diced ham and chopped onion to the bottom of each canning jar. 
Working one jar at a time, using a slotted spoon, ladle hot beans into a hot jar.  Fill the jar to ¾ full.
Top beans with hot water from the bean stockpot, leaving a 1-inch headspace.

Remove air bubbles

Remove any air bubbles.
Add desired spices:  about 1 teaspoon of salt per quart jar, 1/2 teaspoon for a pint and the desired amount of pepper.
Wipe jar rim and apply the clean two-piece lid.

Add salt and pepper

Place jars in a pressure canner and process at 10 pounds pressure:
Quarts for 1 hour, 30 minutes.  (Pints for 1 hour and 15 minutes)
Remove from pressure canner and allow to cool completely before checking lids for proper seals or before storing.


Full pressure canner

Hoping you're staying warm and cozy during the cold winter months.  I'm in Ohio, which is somewhat cold and snowy during winter months.  My daughter who lives in Texas, (which stays pretty warm), told me it was 24 degrees last week when she left for work!  Brrrrrr


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