Too much food! When I first started homesteading, I never thought I would have this problem, but right now we have so much produce coming in that I am overwhelmed! The easiest way to deal with excess is to freeze it, but our freezer is full to overflowing, so it is time to start canning. Canning is time consuming, and it can be a long process with a lot of steps depending on what you are making, but I can't tell you how wonderful it is to pull out a can of pre-prepped food to use later. I WILL remember to thank myself for all of this hard work later!
I decided to use up some of the meat and vegetables in the freezer to can a chicken noodle soup- except we raise rabbits for meat (and chickens for eggs), so in this case it is a rabbit noodle soup. Also, canning noodles is a no no, so we also leave out the noodles and simply add them in when we are ready to eat it. So really we are canning a rabbit vegetable soup.
Here is what you need:
- 3.5 quarts chicken stock (I used homemade rabbit stock)
- 4 cups rabbit, chopped
- 2 cups carrots, chopped
- 1 cup celery, chopped
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 tsp basil (you can add whichever herbs you like)
Dump all of you ingredients into a large pot and simmer for about 20 minutes to blend all of the flavors together. This sounds quick, but all of that chopping takes time...
Next use a slotted spoon to ladle the chicken and veggies into sterilized quart or pint jars. Fill each jar about halfway and then fill the rest of the way with broth, making sure to leave one inch of headspace in each jar.
Put on the lids and rims, and process in a pressure canner for 75 minutes for pint jars or 90 minutes for quart jars. This recipe makes 4 quarts.