There are many reasons to preserve produce. In today’s modern life we turn to food preservation as an inexpensive, and time saving way to have chemical free food. It also helps to extend the abundance and flavors of summer.
The nutritional value of home canning/freezing is much higher than store bought. Many vegetables begin to lose their vitamins as soon as they are harvested. As many as half of the vitamin content can be lost within a few days. Refrigeration helps prolong this to a week or two maybe. If vegetables are handled properly and canned/frozen promptly after harvest they can be even more nutritious than fresh produce sold in local stores.
Gather everything you need before you start. Have your produced washed, cut up and ready to go as well.
Start early in the day to allow plenty of time.
Try preserving in small batches, especially if you are a beginner. This helps keep it simple, and assure impeccable freshness.
Find a recipe and follow it, otherwise you may in up with a less than desirable product. Take time to read the directions and stick with them. This will ensure safe canning methods.
Preserve only what you will eat. While this seems like a no-brainer it becomes difficult to use restraint when you have a lot of produce. Only can/store as much as your family will eat until next year and you can do it all over again.
Here are pictures of some of my favorites.