We have all heard of pressure canning and water bath canning, but what about dry canning. Well, just like it's name, it is canning without any type of moisture, particularly since moisture is what you are trying to avoid.
Dry canning is primarily used for long term storage. There are many other methods, such as 5 gallon buckets or mylar bags, but dry canning is easier. Dry canning allows you to store dry foods for the long term but in more manageable size. Instead of dealing with 5 gallons of long term storage food, you are working with quart sizes.
Dry canning is actually very easy. All you are doing is using 1 quart canning jars. Put whatever dry food you want to store in the canning jar, whether it be rice, beans, lentils, barley, pasta, or anything similar. The only other things you have to do is seal the jar and remove the oxygen. It is as simple as that.
Once the jar is sealed, there are several way to remove the oxygen:
- Oxygen Absorber – add an oxygen absorber to each jar
- FoodSaver Jar Sealer – if you have a FoodSaver, use the FoodSaver T03-0023-01 Wide-Mouth Jar Sealer
- Pump n' Seal Food Vacuum Sealer – I own this tool and love it. You simply pierce the lid, place the special tape over the hole, then use the pump to remove the air.
After removing the oxygen your done. Take the jar and put it into storage. It will last for many, many, many years. If you want to use what you've stored, simply open it up and then reseal it when done. What is really nice is that you aren't opening up a 5 gallon bucket.
I highly recommend giving this a try if you want to do long term dry food storage but don't want to store large amount in a single container. I have done this with beans, barley, and all kinds of dehydrated vegetables and have never had a problem. I plan on adding rice to my dry canning list next.