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Reusing Whole Spices

 
gardener
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Location: Virginia (zone 7)
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Today I've been canning my Tomato Juice Cocktail and the Ketchup I make reprocessing the tomato pulp from the juicer. I've been boiling the ketchup down into a thicker consistency this year. It does make a better product, but that's not very frugal, unless I use an outdoor fire to cook it over.

Where I have found a way to be more frugal is in reusing the spices from the ketchup recipe. Why didn't I think of this sooner?! The cinnamon, celery seeds and cloves used to flavor the vinegar, once strained out and kept in the freezer can be used multiple times. I can't taste the difference.

Spices are expensive! Some are outrageously expensive!! When I see a recipe from now on that says to strain and discard the spices, I'm going to have to reconsider that. I'm sure that there are ones that this wouldn't work for, nothing ground up or too leafy. What spices can you think of that may be used multiple times?

 
pollinator
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I've been wanting to build a rocket stove for my pressure canner. A cross between this


and this



Important concept is the pot fitting down inside the stove so that the sides of the pan get heated as well as the bottom.

You can use a tea ball to put the spices in. That way you just pull the ball out rather than pouring the whole thing through a strainer.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Your rocket stove idea sounds great. I sure wish I had something better. I have one (quite old) electric stove that has only one large eye and three small ones. On canning days there's lots of juggling of pots and canners each needing time on the large eye.

If I ever see a tea ball at a second hand store I'm grabbing it. Until then, I find that reusing the mesh bags garlic bulbs came in, tied with butchers twine does okay.
 
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