Sunday, September 20, 2015

Canned Chicken Thighs

 

cannery

noun can·nery \ˈka-nə-rē\

: a factory where food is put into cans

 

Okay, so you are thinking how does this possibly fit in with makeovers, painting and DIY projects?

Well, I thought I would share a few other topics with you that I have found to be very helpful in my life.

Growing up in the community that I did, I was taught how to can and preserve food. Although I don’t always get it done the way mom used to, I do get some done that I will post about.

Don’t worry, I will still be sharing any makeovers and DIY projects that I feel might interest you. :) (presently I have about five ideas brewing) :o

This week one of my favorite local markets ran a special where you could buy 40 pounds of boneless chicken thighs for $39.60. I snagged a box on Tuesday.

 

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Oh, I should talk about my “cannery” a bit. No, it’s not a factory like described above. It’s more like a drab, kinda dark area in our basement that could seriously use a makeover, but it does work great to work on large quantities of food.

 

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At times I feel a little suffocated down there since some of the windows are almost covered in ivy and I’m at my best when I can at least see the outside while working indoors. I find that playing a little music helps with this. So Tuesday before working with the chicken, I set up my tablet to play Pandora.

 

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First I washed the thighs and cut most of them in half. I think they fit into the jars better if the pieces aren’t too big.

 

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Next they were ready to be put into jars. I used regular quart jars.

 

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I added a teaspoon of salt to each jar and filled it to the neck with water.

 

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After wiping the rim clean, they were ready for lids and rings. I turn the rings until they are snug, but not too tight. Often I buy lids in bulk since it’s a bit cheaper than the boxed ones.

 

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For meat like this, I always use new jar lids. I have at times for juice, fruit, etc. used lids that were used before.

 

Now the jars are ready for the stockpots. Here’s the part where I am pretty old fashioned. I know there are pressure cookers out there to cut your cold packing time in half or more, but I have always canned with stockpots and since that works great, I haven’t yet tried another route.

 

You of course can’t set the jars directly on the base of the pot, so I use cooling racks and old  jar rings to get them off the bottom.

 

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After setting the jars in, I fill the stockpots with warm water up to the necks of the jars.

 

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I set them on the stove and turn the burners on high until they start to boil. I cold pack them for three hours. I turn the burners down once the water starts to boil,then I don’t have to worry about running out of water. If the water does get a little low, I add more hot water. I was always told to never let the pots run out of water, that the jars would explode. Thankfully I have never had to test that theory!

After they boiled for three hours, I set the jars out on newspaper, on the floor.

 

 

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The 40 pounds of chicken gave us 28 quarts. After they cooled, I checked the jars to see if they sealed. A few of them didn’t. I refrigerated them, but they can also be re-cold packed if you wish. At times, I have also put the chicken and broth in freezer containers and frozen them for preservation. Often I just use it in the next few days for a meal.

After washing the jars, they were ready for the shelf!

 

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What a great feeling knowing we have 28 meals of chicken ready to use anytime! In the future, I will share a few of our favorite family recipes to use this chicken with!

Have a great week, everyone! Thanks for visiting!

-Mary

 

2 comments:

  1. Do you have any idea how perfect this post is? I was considering canning chicken and just saw a good deal on a box of chicken at a local store, but wasn't sure how to go about the whole process (I do a very small amount of canning)! I don't usually have a car (two working teens take over) but our son is off work today. I shall go get that chicken and have a canning session! Thanks for giving me that final push!

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  2. Just tried this a couple weeks ago for the first time with chicken breasts. Did everything the same except no added water to the jar and it made its own broth. Used the pressure cooker at 15# for 90 minutes.

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