Canning 101: Using Good Water + Giveaway

mavea elemaris

As many of you have come to know, water is often a primary player in canning. Most pickling recipes call to dilute vinegar by half. We can whole fruit by making a syrup of sugar and water. When I want to include an intense flavor (like ginger) in a preserve, I blend it with some water before squeezing it through some cheesecloth to get a potent little brew.

In all of these recipes, I make a point of using filtered water. Preparing fruits and vegetables for canning is often a process of cooking down and concentrating your ingredients. I really don’t want to concentrate any extra crud or crap in my finished product. I live in an older apartment building, so who knows what kinds of funky particulate matter is in the H2O that comes out of my tap? It’s just one of those steps I like to take to ensure that the quality of my product is as good as I can make it when I go to open those jars six or eight months later.

Edited to add: There’s been a little confusion in the comments. I don’t use filtered water in my processing pot. I only use it IN the canning recipes. Regular tap water is fine for the outside of the jars.

elemaris box

For most of my adult life, I’ve been a Brita water filter user. Recently, I had an opportunity to try the new Elemaris filter and I really like it. It’s made by Mavea (which is part of Brita), is entirely BPA-free and the filters are recyclable. It has a meter on top that tells you when the filter is due for a refill and the lid is designed so that you can simply position it under the tap and fill, no need to remove a piece or flip open a flap.They’ve even created a nifty blog called Inspired Water to help spread the word about this product.

Thanks to Mavea, I have five (yes, five) of these nifty Elemaris pitchers to give away. Winners will get to pick their color (they come in black, purple, red and white). To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment on this post and share your favorite way to drink water (reusable bottle? tea with milk? infused with a squirt of lemon?). Comments will close at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, February 18, 2011. The winners will be selected at random and will be posted the following day (I promise).

Disclosure: Mavea gave me that black water pitcher you see above. I’ve also filmed a series of canning videos with them that will be appearing in the next few weeks. No money has changed hands and I wouldn’t say nice things about their pitcher if I’d didn’t genuinely like it.

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583 Responses to Canning 101: Using Good Water + Giveaway

  1. 551
    cariku says:

    I drink water all day at work, I need the trips to refill my cup and get away from my desk.

  2. 552
    bridget says:

    My favorite way to drink water is probably in a large glass, with plenty of ice and a bit of lime or lemon. Usually, though, it’s out of my giant lidded cup from the hospital or from a metal reusable water bottle.

  3. 553
    Deanne says:

    Cool (not icy) with a thin slice of cucumber 🙂

  4. 554

    I’ve been home for 2 weeks with 3 out of 4 sick kiddos. So for my sweeties I make an infuson of Buckwheat honey, fresh sage sprigs, fresh meyer lemon slices and some juice in water and warm it. I love giving a bit of cookie to make it tea time too..hehe they get that liquid in them with out thinking about it they love water too. I found you from reading the urban homestead blog your a favortite there. I zoomed over and will continue to visit!


  5. 555

    I like to drink tap water from a glass {either plastic or the real thing}. But I also have a Sigg with the special cap that is leak-proof, and pressure sensitive.
    But I am discovering lately that I really enjoy drinking through the straw on my reusable iced coffee cups.

  6. 556
    Shanti says:

    Ice cold, carried in my reusable metal bottle.

  7. 557
    SnowCat MacDobhran says:

    We used to have a triple osmosis filter under our sink but my plumber yanked it out. According to him, unless you are compounding medications, you have no need for it. I’d like to filter a little out, but our well water is yummy.

    I love water – drink it out of the tap room temperature, and I really try to remember to bring my bottle with me.

  8. 558
    Bladerunner says:

    I’m pretty happy with plain water. I’m lucky enough to live in an area where the water is pretty darned good. Lately I’ve been taking diluted tea to work – just enough flavor to change things up a little bit, at least to start the day. Then when the weak tea is gone, I fill the bottle back up with plain water.

    I’m also excited to find out that Britta recycles their filters! I can take the filters from the pot at work to Whole Foods or mail them straight back to Britta, and they become stuff like backyard benches and toothbrush handles!

  9. 559

    I like my water at room temperature, straight from a BPA-free Intak bottle by Thermos- I can drink out of it all day and the water never takes on any funky plastic taste. My 4 y.o. daughter is a water hound, and she likes hers ice cold. We keep a pitcher of Pur faucet-filtered water in the fridge for her and my husband.

  10. 560
    RuthAnn says:

    I like my water a little cooler than room temp….a little lemon or some bubbles to mix things up is always nice.

  11. 561
    Rachel says:

    Plain water for me! Pregnant with twins means it’s a good thing, too–lots of water per the OB

  12. 562
    eliz says:

    i prefer sparkling water. my next major water-related purchase will be a sodastream. i think it will change my life!

  13. 563
    Christine says:

    i love to drink room temperature water out of glass jars!

  14. 564
    Mojo says:

    I like my water frozen into cubes and served with a generous proportion of Whiskey!

  15. 565
    Stephanie says:

    I love to use filtered water in my morning smoothie – water, spinach, flax, frozen blueberries, strawberries, banana, pineapple, and a little stevia for sweetner…YUM! This is my “red bull” of choice! I also only drink water all day – never soda or caffeine drinks!

  16. 566
    Rebecca says:

    My favorite way to drink water is the same way as my Grandmother–who lived to a feisty 93 and Aunt Irma–an elegant 97 at her death last year. They each started their morning with a mug of hot, steaming water. Sure, you can add lemon or a shot of Bragg’s vinegar, but I like to go classic and I often give a little toast to this healthy, stalwart women,

  17. 567
    Dawn says:

    I never thought about the water that I use for preserving. Thanks.

  18. 568
    Karen says:

    I just like a big glass of cold, filtered water!

  19. 569
    Lisa Brown says:

    Every morning when I brew my PG Tips….and in a Bobble on my desk all day long.

  20. 570
    lekkercraft says:

    Clear and cold, with ice!

  21. 571
    Sherry says:

    I just like it in a big white mug. I don’t like carrying flasks around, and I don’t buy bottled water so I have mugs at home and at work.

    Once in a while, if I’m feeling fancy and I have some extra lemons, I’ll pop a lemon slice in it.

  22. 572
    Paula says:

    I drink my water in my homemade kombucha! I’ve noticed a change in the flavor since I moved into a new place with different water, too.

  23. 573
    lydia jean says:

    with chia seeds and a squeeze of lemon from my tree!

  24. 574
    M L Morgan says:

    I like to carbonate my water and drink it sparklingly straight~!

  25. 575
    Jenn says:

    I just found this delightful blog recently and have already made the ginger syrup (delicious, btw!) I look forward to making many more things!

    My favorite way to drink water? There isn’t one. I despise drinking water, even though I know I should!

  26. 576
    Erinn says:

    I love water as cold as possible with lots of lemon or lime juice.

  27. 577
    jeanie says:

    I like a big glass of room temp water in my favorite mason jar from Lagunitas Brewery.

  28. 578
    Karen Stoneking says:

    Iced tea and lots of it. I also enjoy water with a bit of cranberry juice added. I also use water for coffee and my husband likes it straight up on the rocks :). We would truly love to have a water filter unit. Thanks for the giveaway

  29. 579

    I love my water in a large red wine glass, ice-cold with fresh lemon and lime wedges squeezed in it. It’s such a delicious way to enjoy a class of water. It feels decadent during dinner!

    Also, I love a raspberry Emergen-C in my trusty stainless steel water bottle when I’m at work. It’s a great afternoon pick me up.

    I love your site!!!

  30. 580
    Roberta says:

    I drink a lot of water since I quit drinking sodas. I prefer ice cold filtered water with ice. At times I like Crystal Light Peach Tea or hot green tea also. My old Brita gets quite a workout.

  31. 581
    kim says:

    with sliced cucumber…yummy

  32. 582
    Angela says:

    Water at home is plain on ice. A perk of work is free bottled water from a bubbler that goes into a sigg.