A happy jar encounter + giveaway

jars as target

I am always on the lookout for canning supplies. Whether I’m at a grocery store, hardware store or rummage sale, I constantly scan shelves and displays for jars, lids, pectin and more. It’s not that I’m in need of these supplies (I am quite well stocked at this point). I just like being aware of what’s out there, what new products Jarden Home Brands is releasing and the general availability of canning gear.

Last Sunday, I was seriously disappointed by both an Acme and a Giant out in Delaware County. We were on an errand out that way and stopped in to both grocery stores, looking for canning stuff (for me) and Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper (for Scott). We left both stores empty-handed on both fronts. However, the canning universe redeemed itself in a big way tonight. On a quick, post-dinner trip to Target tonight, I discovered a holy mother lode of preserving paraphernalia (unfortunately, I don’t see any of this stuff on Target.com). I practically danced with joy, right there in the main aisle of the South Philadelphia Target.

They had products I’ve never even seen before, including a freezer container that had knobs on top that allow you to indicate the date of freezing with a few clicks and a giant, one-gallon Ball storage jar, produced to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the Ball company (yes, that’s me in the picture above, cradling the huge jar and grinning like I’ve just won the lottery).

The other thing the had tonight were copies of the very hard to find Ball Blue Book of Canning (the 100th anniversary edition, no less). Because I know just what a pain it can be to lay hands on this most useful little book, I bought two copies to pass along to a couple of Food in Jars readers. If you want one, leave a comment between now and Friday at 5 p.m., when I’ll pick winners.

And happy canning!

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85 Responses to A happy jar encounter + giveaway

  1. 51

    I’ve heard so much praise for that book! I would LOVE a copy πŸ™‚ Please include me in your contest!

  2. 52
    Tara says:

    I can’t wait to go to Target now! That huge jar is awesome!

  3. 53
    Mary says:

    Last summer at a farm auction not far from us I bought all the boxes of old and newish canning jars for $10. There was also a large box containing 26 Miracle Whip jars included in the job lot. I’d love the cookbook to get some ideas for what to do with them other than giving them to the church for Sunday School crafts!
    Thank you for your blog. I enjoy it early each morning with my coffee.

    • 53.1
      Kathleen Sullivan says:

      Mayo jars are great for dry canning.
      Make sure to use new lids.
      Dry can with your vacuum seal attachment of your Food Saver or use a 100cc oxygen absorber.
      You can dry can so many things like rice, wheat, dry pasta, crackers or dehydrated or freeze dried fruits, vegetables and meats.
      Dry canning keeps these foods shelf stable for years!!
      Try pre-mixed meals in jars.

  4. 54
    Jennifer says:

    I would love to get the Ball book. I’ve been wanting to pick up a copy and get started on all sorts of projects, but life has just gotten in the way thus far, and the summer is slipping away! I’ll get my canning act together soon, I promise!

  5. 55
    Ke says:

    I’ve been eyeing the book on Amazon. I want to make some pickles for this winter…yum

  6. 56
    Debby says:

    I can never find the Ball Blue Book! My mother keeps telling me to get it.

  7. 57
    Fran says:

    I have convinced Greg to go blueberry picking on Saturday, and I could use the book. I’m seeing jam in my future, regardless.

  8. 58
    Chris says:

    I would love to have a copy of the book and am getting back into canning after doing it on a small scale years ago….Thank you!!!!

  9. 59
    Melynda says:

    I have been getting back into jam making and canning. I even have started a small kitchen garden. I have been harvesting raspberries. I would love a copy of this very useful book, I cannot seem to locate my worn out old one!

  10. 60
    Tony Cross says:

    I saw the very same display at my local Target just south of San Francisco!!! It was very exciting. The gallon jar was beautiful, but what to use it for??? I couldn’t think of anything – yet. Oh, by the way I already have the book so please don’t enter me in the contest, just wanted to share my excitement.

  11. 61
    sarah says:

    Isn’t it strange that the different Targets carry such different items? I guess maybe it’s a regional thing…

  12. 62
    Kimberly says:

    Oh, love the photo of you with that gallon jar! And I want one, too! (I’ll have to check out my local target.) I’d love a copy of the book; I have a couple of other canning books, but that’s the classic.

  13. 63
    Cat W. says:

    I want a book! And thanks for the info on Target. I didn’t really want to buy canning stuff online the first time, so I’m going to go check ours. Thanks!

  14. 64
    sonrie says:

    Hi there! I would love a copy of this book. If you check out my blog, you can view our very large backyard garden…we have purchased many glass years and imagine canning in the next few weeks. Take care!

  15. 65
    wes says:

    No one has ever taught me to can, so I’m always a little afraid to actually store the stuff I can on a shelf. Instead, i keep them in the refrigerator or freezer. Maybe someday, I’ll trust my processing enough.

  16. 66
    BrooklynCanner says:

    Oh my! I would love to win that book! I’m wishing for it right now!!

    That 1-gallon jar looks amazing. It probably wouldn’t fit in my canner but I bet it is excellent for making sun tea!

  17. 67
    Siiri says:

    I’ve not canned before and I think this book could really get me into it. Love your site! Thanks πŸ™‚

  18. 68
    maggie says:

    That freezer container with the date marker is so brilliant. I really need to find some of those.

  19. 69
    Jaime L says:

    Thank you for your blog and all your giveaways! I just made your yummy strawberry and rhubarb jam – awesome with yoghurt! I would love to win this book – slim pickings for preserving books where I live!

  20. 70
    bethh says:

    you make me want to run right out to my local Target! I think I’d store flour in the large jar, if the mouth is big enough for a one-cup scoop.

    I’m totally interested in the book.

  21. 71

    So, like the first commenter, I haven’t tried canning because I’m also afraid of botulism. True story about that:

    I was sitting in a non-fiction course at university, waiting for class to begin when the teacher came up to me. “You girls should try canning,” she said to me and the girl next to me, “I have so many left over green beans. But you can die if you get it wrong. You can! But don’t worry, I think you can do it.” Then she walked away and started class.

    Strange, no? I like to play with death, so I think I’d like to win a copy of this canning book. Thanks!

  22. 72
    Yvonne says:

    I think you may have started a stampede to Targets fot the jar and the book! Please enter me in the book giveaway.

    I only recently “found” your blog and it is already one of my must reads. Thank you for the great info!

  23. 73
    crunchysews says:

    That gorgeous jar is worth cradling. I want one! I’d also love a copy of the Blue Book so please enter me in the drawing. πŸ™‚

  24. 74
    pam says:

    My target doesn’t even carry canning supplies. I usually find mine at the little bitty hardware stores, where they go quickly. I missed the book, so please enter me in the drawing!

  25. 75
    Karen says:

    I’ve been procrastinating all week – please enter me for the drawing. I’ve become pretty addicted to the freezer jam, next step: buying some canning supplies for more hard-core canning adventures.

  26. 76
    AmiS says:

    I’ve been really wanting to try my hand at canning so I would love love love to win this! Thanks for the great giveaway and good luck everyone!

  27. 77
    Dianne says:

    I just got an e-mail from Amazon telling me they’ve cancelled my order for the Ball Blue Book of Canning due to lack of availability…your contest couldn’t have come along at a better time. πŸ™‚

    And I am totally envious of that large jar. I want one!

  28. 78
    meadowlark says:

    I don’t have that one and would LOVE to win it.

    But I do realize that is greedy of me, since I already can and there’s somebody who needs it more.

    But that totally doesn’t stop me from wanting to win.

  29. 79
    Sharon D says:

    Just found your web site, I love it. Have been canning since in my teens & am always looking for canning sites. Thanks. I have the book so dont include me in the drawing. I love the canning jar photo. Will have to try my target here in TX to see if they have it.

  30. 80

    I am soooo excited about canning supplies in Philadelphia. Last year when I asked about them in grocery stores no one even knew what I was talking about, let alone carried them. Actual exchange: Customer Service: You mean, like, lids for cat food cans? Me: Um, no. Never mind.

  31. 81
    Mitchell Webster says:

    If I am right and read that you were located in PA, in Philidelphia, I just wanted to remind you that if you run out of ANY Canning supplies, that all you have to do is travel a short distance of any of the Old Order Mennonite and Amish towns in your area and you will find a canning wonderland at your fingertips, I live in the Shenandoah Valley of VA, near Dayton VA, an Old Order Mennonite Colony 3,000 here. The average Old Order family cans between 1000 and 2,000 qts of food per year, including meats and meals in jars. Believe me there are stores run by Mennonites in your area that won’t let you down in the canning arena!!!!

  32. 82
    Angela S. says:

    Thanks for the info! I found you by doing a search on “canning supplies in Philadelphia”. Good to know I can buy them at Target!

  33. 83
    samW says:

    I could use that book πŸ™‚

  34. 84
    Angela Gerace says:

    Perhaps it is because of my mother and grandmother’s warnings to follow any canning and preserving recipe to the β€œT” or the recipe would fail horribly, that I have never experimented outside the norm. However, this year and many thanks to your blogs, I have been overcoming the fear of sticking with traditional canning and pickling recipes. Every time I find a new unique recipe, I immediately feel like a little kid on Christmas. I am enjoying going outside the traditional and even creating my own, yes my very own, unique recipes.
    There is nothing better then recognizing the basics rules to all canning and preserving, loosing the fear of following a recipe to the β€œT”, making it your own, and having an amazing outcome. I must also say, that finding unique canning jars at Estate and yard sales is equally exciting and can add a little pizzazz to any homemade product.

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