CAUTION: Canning salsa recipes must be done properly to avoid any health risk.
Clostridium botulinum is a bacteria which produces a deadly toxin that
can cause death or severe damage to the central nervous system when consumed in
even small amounts if the salsa is not canned correctly
Since most salsa recipes contain a mixture of low-acid foods, such as onions and
chiles, an acid such as lemon juice or vinegar must be added to the salsa canning.
This is done to prevent the growth of this bacteria Special care must be taken when
to ensure that they contain enough acid to be processed safely in a boiling water canner.
When following canned salsa recipe instructions, make sure to follow it exactly.
Use the amounts of each vegetable listed in the recipe. Add the amount of vinegar
or lemon juice listed.
Do not can salsas that do not follow these or other research tested recipes.
(They may be frozen or stored in the refrigerator but not canned.)
Also do not thicken salsas with flour or cornstarch before canning the salsa. After you
open a jar to use, you may pour off some of the liquid or thicken with cornstarch.
Filling the Jars
Follow manufacturer's directions for pretreating lids before you can the salsa. Fill
hot clean jars with the hot salsa, being careful not to leave any salsa on the rims. Wipe
jar rims with a clean, damp paper towel. Put on lids and screw on metal bands.
Processing in a Boiling Water Canner
When you are ready to can the salsa you should follow these steps.
1. Use a rack to keep jars from touching canner bottom and to allow heat to
reach all sides of the filled jars.
2. Put jars into a canner that contains simmering water.
3. Add boiling water if needed to bring water 1-2 inches above jar tops. Don' t
pour water directly on the jars. Place a tight-fitting cover on canner. (If you
use a pressure canner for water bath canning, leave the cover unfastened and
the petcock open to prevent pressure buildup.)
4. Bring water back to a rolling boil. Set a timer for recommended processing
time. Watch closely to keep water boiling gently and steadily. Add boiling
water if necessary to keep jars covered.
5. Remove the jars from the canner immediately after timer sounds. The food
could spoil later if jars are left in hot water too long.
Put jars on a rack or cloth so air can circulate freely around them. Don't
use a fan and avoid cold drafts.
Do not retighten screw bands after processing.
Testing for Seal
Test each jar for a seal the day after canning the salsa. Jars with flat
metal lids are sealed if:
1. Lid is curved down in the center.
2. Lid does not move when pressed down.
3. Tapping the center of the lid with a spoon gives a clear, ringing sound
(this is the least reliable method).
If a jar is not sealed, refrigerate the contents and use soon or reprocess.
Reprocess within 24 hours. When reprocessing, the salsa must first be heated
to a boil before packing in hot jars. Wipe jar rims clean. Use a new lid and
process for the full time listed.
Storing the Canned Salsa
Wipe jars. Label with the date and the contents of the jar. Remove the screw
bands to avoid rust.
Store jars in a cool dark place. For best eating quality and nutritive
value, use within one year. Heat, freezing temperatures, light, or dampness
will decrease the quality and shelf life of canned salsa.
Before Using the Canned Salsa
Before opening each jar, look for bulging lids, leaks, or any unusual appearance
of the food. After opening, check for off-odor, mold, or foam. If there is any
sign of spoilage, destroy the canned salsa.
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