It doesn’t get much better than summer canning. Apricot jam, whole Marzano tomatoes, and pickled veggies? Sign.Me.Up. And while I generally endeavor to include my children in the kitchen, canning is about as far from kid-friendly as cooking can get. Giant pots of boiling water, glass jars, and molten hot jam? Sorry, kids: you’re sitting this one out. And forget helping — I don’t even like to boil water when they’re awake — so finding time for one of my favorite hobbies is always a conundrum.
Naptime has never seemed like a viable option because canning is such a lengthy, painstaking process. But the produce at the farmer’s market has become too irresistible, I’ve yet to crack my gorgeous “Food In Jars” cookbook that was (gulp) a Christmas gift, and this darling lid stamp from BRIKA is calling my name. What’s a girl to do?
So this weekend, I’m going to try breaking up the work into two sessions: prep the fruit or vegetables for cooking and run my jars and lids through the “Sanitize” setting on my dishwasher during morning naptime, and then cook and can the product during afternoon naptime.
It’s an ambitious plan that assumes my husband’s helpfulness, my son’s sleepiness and my toddler’s coolness (always a dicey bet). I like to think this has a better chance of succeeding than say, poor Project Earlybird (an utter failure despite my best intentions), but doomed, overly-ambitious plans are kind of my thing. So, uh, here goes?!