Saturday, December 31, 2016

Canning Chili for Chilly Days

I feel like I've spent the last couple of days in the kitchen, but in all fairness that really is where a mom spends her time when she has grown and almost grown kids.  Knowing we were traveling for Christmas, I didn't cook much and made sure we ate whatever was left in the refrigerator.  

Once we made through Christmas and two birthdays it was time to get back in the kitchen.  I love having my jars of prepared meals because it makes it easy to have a home cooked meal with minimal time, effort and mess.  Granted the on-time cooking process of canning can create one glorious mess, but it will be enough food for 9+ meals! 

The boy and I ran to the store to pick him up some toiletries for his return to college next week and while we were at the grocery store I spotted 93/7 lean ground beef for under $3 per pound. $3 is my break point for 93/7, because I can usually find it from $4-$6 per pound but it's hard to find at $3.  

(cooked in skillet)
3 lb of beef
1 Tablespoon beef bullion
1 Tablespoon Ranch seasoning
1 Tablespoon Taco seasoning
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
(drain and place about 3/4 cup meat in each Ball Wide Mouth Quart Jars)

Next split and layer the following ingredients between your jars: 
1 chopped poblano pepper
1 chopped bell pepper
1 chopped onion
3 chopped Roma tomatoes
3 sprigs of parsley

Top the jars with boiling tomato sauce, it will take about 32 ounces to top off the 3 quarts.  Use a small Bubble Remover to release any air bubbles that might be trapped in your jars.  Hamburger meat has lots of crevices for air bubbles to hide.   My jars look really pretty stacked, but once I release the air they look like chili. 

Leave about 1" headspace in each jar.  Wipe the rims down with white vinegar before adding your sterilized lids and finger tighten. Process the jars for 90 minutes at 10 pounds pressure in a Pressure Canner

So you know it will taste fantastic, but how does it price compare?  Well, a 15 oz can of Wolf brand chili is 2 (1 cup) servings at $3 per can.  My quart jars are 4 (1 cup) servings at $3.25 per quart.  Meaning the store bought canned chili is $1.50 per serving and my homemade, lean, fresh veggies, preservative-free chili is $0.81 per serving! 

Bring on the cold weather! 

Who gives food to all flesh: for his mercy endures for ever, 

O give thanks unto the God of heaven Psalm 136: 25-26

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