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These rules are listed in the approximate order of the canning procedure:
1. Before starting to work, examine all jars and lids for possible small chips, knicks and other defects by running your finger tips around the jar rim. Should the sealing rim of a jar or lid be chipped or otherwise damaged, discard it, since it will not permit an airtight seal.
2. Cleanliness is especially of utmost importance. Wash canning jars in hot soapy water, then rinse them in clean, hot water. If mold has formed in used jars (because they were stored in a damp cellar), submerge jars in boiling water for ten minutes. Mold and fungus spores are not killed at temperatures below 212°F, so the temperature of a dishwasher (about 140°F) is not high enough.
3. Carefully examine rubber rings before processing. Possible cracks can be best detected by holding the rubber ring between the thumbs and forefingers of both hands and tugging lightly while turning bit by bit. A safe seal can only be achieved by using perfect rubber rings. Always use new rubber rings.
4. Submerge rubber canning rings in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Leave them in the hot water until they are needed. It is not necessary to sterilize jars and lids unless the processing time is less than 10 minutes. (Fruit juices are processed only 5 minutes, for example.) To sterilize jars and lids, boil them for 10 minutes.
5. When filling hot foods (example, precooked hot jam) into the jars, place the jars on a towel, rack or wooden cutting board to keep jars from cracking.
6. What is the proper headspace?
7. Sweetening (natural and artificial)
8. After filling the jars, carefully wipe the jar rim.
9. When using the WECK Round Rim jars, apply the rubber ring to the sealing rim of the lid. It is best to apply the rings before filling the jars. Leave the lids with the attached rings in hot water, until both can be placed together on the jar. The uncomplicated sealing method of the WECK jars prevents dislodgment of the rubber canning ring and seals which are not airtight can be avoided.
10. Closing the packed jars by means of spring clamps:
11. In the canner, the jars should be placed on a rack. It does not matter if the jars touch each other or the kettle wall. They should not, however, be wedged into the canner so tightly that the jars cannot move at all; a little space for jar movement is necessary for good results.
12. After you have placed the jars on the rack in the canner, fill water into the canner high enough so that the jars are completely submerged in the water. If you place two or more rows of jars on top of each other, or if low jars are processed together with high ones, the water level will always depend on the height of the highest jars. If two layers of jars are being processed, a second rack must be used between the layers so that the water can circulate freely around all the jars. The jars should be completely covered by one to two inches of water. The spring action of the clamps keeps them sealed, and no water from outside can enter the jars.
14. When processing your jars, carefully observe the temperatures and heating times specified in the recipe section of the WECK Home Canning Guide. Do not cut down the processing times under any circumstances! The processing time starts when the canner reaches a full rolling boil. The time needed to heat up the water in the canner does not count! The thermostat then holds the set temperature by controlling the heating element which keeps the water at a constant temperature.
15. When the required processing time is up, remove the jars from the canner. Place jars on a rack, wooden cutting board, or towel, and allow them to cool down undisturbed. The jars should not cool down in the water bath, since in that case the heating time is lengthened and the canned foods may become too soft or turn unsightly due to overcooking. Nor is it advisable for the same reason to cover the processed jars with a towel. Keep jars away from a cold draft, and avoid placing them on a cold surface or cooling them quickly by means of cold water.
16. Very important:
17. In the storage area, the jars should not be subjected to direct sunlight. The room has to be kept frost-free. It is not necessary that the canned jars be stored in a cool basement or cellar. It is sufficient if they are kept at room temperature.
18. In order to open your canning jars, pull the protruding tab of the rubber ring, until you hear a "ps-s-st", indicating that air has been sucked into the jar. The vacuum in the jar has thus been equalized, and the lid and rubber ring can now be easily taken off. Never use sharp objects, such as knives, scissors, or screwdrivers, since they will damage the jar rim or lid. If the rubber rings sticks to the jar or the tab is torn off, the jar can be opened easily by attaching three canning clamps and placing the jar upside down in hot water for several minutes.
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