Grammy, my great-grandmother, took care of me quite often when I was a small child. During the Depression, she was hired by the County Extension Service to go around the countryside teaching women, especially in low-income families, how to safely can vegetables. She had a pressure canner that she took with her and helped the women put up food so their families might have a little more to eat in the winter.
I did not start canning until I was in college. I did not learn how to can from my great grandmother, my grandmothers, or mother. Though a few women my family did can a things: one grandmother (BJ) would put up blackberry jelly and raspberry and strawberry jam, and my aunt (mother’s sister) would can sweet pickles. My brother and I loved picking blackberries on forest roads near their mountain home for our grandmother’s jelly, and I always enjoyed my aunt’s so-very-sweet pickles. But, I had a small appreciation for “putting up food”.
This year I put up 40 quarts of applesauce, a very often eaten food in this household (though not by me), and 20 quarts of peaches (a wonderful winter dessert), and a handful of jellies and jams for toast and biscuits, and a batch of pickled beets for winter snacks and salads.
I thought I was done with applesauce for the year, but William picked more apples this weekend before the rainstorm. I may have some more work to do.