Help- I canned salsa and forgot to remove the air bubbles! - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 7 Old 09-13-2009, 06:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, this is my first venture with canning. I usually stick to the freezer and have loads of strawberry freezer jam, etc.

I canned several jars of salsa, put them into the canner and shortly after I realized that I forgot to remove the air bubbles! Are they any good? Do I need to recan? What happens if I don't remove the bubbles?

ETA: I've been reading and noticed that many recipes say to heat the salsa to 180 before putting it into the jars. I didn't do this either. So have I ruined my salsa?
Thanks for helping a newbie!

Life loving Mama, married to DH, Mama to DS1 , DS2 , missing our , and another boy born June!
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#2 of 7 Old 09-13-2009, 07:53 PM
 
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Well, it depends on your recipe. Most call for them to be heated to boiling or simmered for a few minutes before canning. Did you use lemon juice, vinegar, or wine to assure acidity?

Personally, unless it's a super big jar of something, airbubbles aren't really a big deal for me. It's more for clunky things, imo, like peaches or pickles. Salsa is pretty liquid.
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#3 of 7 Old 09-13-2009, 09:39 PM
 
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removing air bubbles afaik is more for astethics than anything else. As for the heating bit, idk. Did you follow any certain recipe or just make it up as you went? If you followed a recipe and it didn't say to heat to 180 I wouldn't worry - especially if you did bring it to a boil/simmer for a few minutes.
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#4 of 7 Old 09-13-2009, 11:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The recipe I used called for 4 Tbs lemon juice and 4 Tbs lime juice, compared to about 25 roma tomatoes. So is that enough acid?

I followed just my general fresh salsa recipe, so there was no heating involved at all.

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#5 of 7 Old 09-14-2009, 12:03 AM
 
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The heating is usually more about preventing thermal shock to the jars... Putting "cold" food into the hot water bath can result in breakage. By putting hot food into hot jars then into the hot water bath, the jars aren't shocked and you're safe.

Of course it's possible to can "raw-packed" or "cold" stuff too, you just have to be more careful -- for instance, make sure the hot water bath is not at boiling when you put the jars in, so it all heats up together.

So from that respect, if your jars didn't break, then you're probably fine.

Now if it was a fresh, uncooked salsa, you MIGHT have needed to do a longer processing time than with a cooked salsa. That I'm not sure of. How long did you process for? I know that when I process fresh whole tomatoes, it's like 85 minute for quarts. But the cooked salsa (even cooked like 10-20min, though I always reduce it down for well over an hour heh) only needs 20min for quarts.

I'm trying to picture how much 25 romas is... heh... I *think* that's enough juice. My recipe uses 1.5-2c juice, but that's for like 7 quarts of chopped tomatoes.

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#6 of 7 Old 09-14-2009, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh thank you tankgirl!! You guys are wonderful to keep replying to my silly questions.

I can't tell you exactly how much 25 romas makes, but with everthing else in the salsa I made 3 quart jars. I'm doing small batches since I have a 10 1/2 month old babe and I never know when I'm gonna have to stop. LOL.

I processed for 45 minutes at a rolling boil, but the jars were in the canner with warm/simmering water for about 25 minutes before that. It took a while for that water to heat up. So in all the cans were in the water for about 70-75 minutes. Is that enough?

I must say that I'm learning more about canning from this one batch of salsa than I ever thought I would.

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#7 of 7 Old 09-14-2009, 03:38 PM
 
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The time for the water to warm up doesn't actually count as processing time. Only when it's at boiling temp does it do anything in terms of killing baddies. I know it's tempting to include all that, but we can't.

My recipe gets about 5-6 quarts for 1-1/2c of lemon/lime juice. So yours may be a little light on acidity. You have to be careful when using a recipe that's not originally intended for canning. Especially if it has other veggies in it, like onions, that can affect the acidity as well. The safest thing is to use a recipe designed for canning.

That being said, I started off just canning the recipe I already used otherwise. Then I modified it based on what I learned about canning in the meantime. Recently I compared it with an "official" recipe and it's remarkably similar.

45 minutes for raw salsa... I honestly can't say if that's enough or not. I'm not enough of an expert! Probably, unless someone can find out for sure, you should eat those jars up pretty soon, just in case.

Heather, mom to Caileigh 12/06 and aspie ADHD prodigy David 05/98 :intact lact
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