Our first canning project was salsa. We decided that we wanted to save ourselves the messy foodmill and clean up, so we would just blend the hot salsa. This sounds easy. You ladle the hot soup into the blender, zip it through, and then put it back in the pot. We violated every safety rule and had salsa in my hair and splattered on the kitchen cupboards before we were through! We decided that we needed a better plan and that led to the purchase of the hand blender. Best money I have ever spent!
My favorite part is just learning along side mom. A long-time canner, she has all of the details in her head. She is a stickler for cleanliness, has all of the gadgets, and just standing at the sink with her peeling tomatoes after a long week has been so calming. I bring the recipe and she helps me get it through to finished. We also love to hear the pop of the jars sealing when they are out of the hot water bath.
Next on the canning agenda - peaches!