canning jar I’ve been seeing a lot of articles and blog posts about canning lately; it seems like the economy is inspiring people to preserve some of the harvest for later. One of the more interesting things I’ve seen is this post in Facebook notes, called Mock Pineapple—Bring on the Zucchini! It seems that, if you have more zucchini than you can use or give away, you can preserve it, for use as a pineapple substitute later.

Did you have trouble processing that last sentence? Well, I can understand why! In general, I’m not a fan of facsimile food – my palate is apparently too refined to accept a soy substitute for chicken (or anything else). But this recipe intrigued me. Basically, it calls for shredded or cubed zucchini to be simmered with pineapple juice, and then preserved in canning jars. Strangely enough, it also calls for pineapple extract for extra flavoring. Here’s what the author of this post says about the recipe:

And it does taste just like pineapple. You can bake it in bread, put it on yogurt, on pizza, or even eat it right out of the jar. With this recipe you will never complain what to do with all that extra again. Bring on the zucchini!

The comments on this post were also interesting. One commenter said she had tried this, and that the texture was different from real pineapple, so it was only suitable for baking. Another noted that with all the ingredients, it probably wasn’t much cheaper than buying cans of pineapple for cooking or baking – so really, it’s more about using up all your produce than about saving money.

Other canning-related tidbits I’ve found on the Internet recently:

  • On Ethel’s Blog, this post called The Humble Mason Jar is an entertaining essay on all the uses for canning jars.
  • On Attainable Sustainable, a lesson on the Anatomy of Canning Jar. The beauty of it is that all brands of jars use standard lids, so it’s easy to recycle glass jars indefinitely and just replace the tops.
  • Also from Attainable Sustainable, a very useful tip about Classico spaghetti sauce and other products that come in jars you can reuse for canning, because standard lids can be used to seal them.

And finally, a group called Canning Across America is declaring that Saturday, August 17 is Can It Forward Day, and is sponsoring live, how-to canning demos that will stream on the Internet at www.FreshPreserving.com. Viewers will be able to ask questions and post comments in real time. There’s also a “Can-a-Rama” — a week of home canning parties nationwide from August 14th to 20th.

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