Canning Salsa

Canning Food

Canning Food

Canning food is important in more than one way. Canning use to be very important tradition in many families in the past.  Food preservation or canning was a way of life for many people. There is a gap in cultural knowledge of canning food because we are so depended on industries to can food for us. We depend on Mass Production and Mass Transportation to deliver food to us from 100 of miles away. But we can change all that if we bring back the tradition of canning food and being less depended on the Food industry for the food we eat.

Canning is also called Natural Storage because you can preserve fruits and vegetables in their natural state. It is an excellent way to store food you’ve grown on your own. Nuts, beans, peas, and grains store well in their natural state. An interesting fact that everybody should know is that you can store potatoes, winter squash, pumpkins, and sweet potatoes in cool places for 6 months!

The canning process can be fun, you can do it by yourself or you can can with friends and make it an activity to do every other month or when you pick the foods you’ve grown to store. To can you can use many different methods but the easiest and most popular is the Boiling Water Bath or Stem Canning process, this process is great for preserving high acid foods like; fruits, jams, pickles and jellies. For this process you have to boil water to 212 degrees (F). Using a Pressure Canner is the best way to process low acid foods such as; meats, beans, and vegetables. The Pressure Canner can reach temperature as high as 240 degrees (F), which is needed because high temperatures in both processes are needed to kill off bacteria that cause food to spoil.

We decided to make and can salsa because it seemed quick, easy and fun; which it was.  We used the Boiling Water Process to can the salsa, because it was the fastest and easiest. The first step we did was make the salsa of course, the second step was to boil water and place the jars and lids in the pot for 5 minutes to sterilize them, next we poured the salsa in the jar leaving ¼ of space at the top, next we made sure there was no air bubbles in the jar, and we cleaned the jar and rim so no bacteria well form, then we place the lids on top and sealed it, and last but not least we boiled the jar with salsa in it and we were done.

It was a fun experience learning how to can salsa and learning the importance of canning food. Canning helps you eat in season and extends your season without having to buy food that was transported from another country. Eating in season is also healthier and better for you. Everyone should learn how to can because it fun, and a great way to bring friends and family together for a great night of canning foods.

YES YOU CAN CAN!

~ Tamara Sandoval

The problem of nuclear power plants

Fukushima Nuclear Disaster

Fukushima Nuclear Disaster

Have you ever thought about the problem of nuclear power?

Nuclear power is an important world problem. After the earthquake on March 11 in Japan, I had a lot of opportunities to think about nuclear power plants. For instance, “How can people continue getting energy without nuclear power plants?” “Which is more important: safety or its usefulness?” and so on. As a Japanese person, I would like to write about nuclear power. I would like people to know more about the situation in Japan and how dangerous nuclear power plants are.

Nuclear power and Japan

Now in Japan, the problem of nuclear power plants is very important. Because of the earthquake, the nuclear power plant in Fukushima prefecture has collapsed. And the people who were living around the power plants took refuge from where they lived. Still now, they cannot go back there. That is why there are many problems in education, economy, and health. For example, in the case of education, many children who got affected by the nuclear power plant and took refuge became late in their studies, and because of it, the difference in education is increasing. I got this information through newspapers or on TV before I came to Fort Lewis College and while teaching junior high school children who took refuge from the Fukushima prefecture. Before the accidents of the nuclear power plants, Japan was aiming to increase the number of nuclear power plants in order to increase the self-sustenance of energy in Japan. However, now Japan is searching for new ideas to keep the balance between the safety and reaching energy stability.

Nuclear power and Native Americans

After I came to Fort Lewis, I learned about Native Americans. In my class, I learned about Native Americans and the environment. This is the news I got from Native American times:

“In all, about 10 percent of all power plants operate within 20 miles of reservation land, according to an Associated Press analysis of data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Many of those 51 energy production centers are more than a half-century old and affect roughly 48 tribes living on 50 reservations. Fewer than 2 percent of all people in the United States identify as Native American and only a small portion live on tribal land.” (Native American times 6th July 2012 – http://www.nativetimes.com/news/environment/7422-many-native-americans-live-next-to-power-plants)

The reason why the government tries to establish nuclear power plants is to help the economy. I would like for Native American leaders to look at the situation in Japan and think about the health of their people, because I believe that without health we cannot keep the economy well.

~ Hanae Miyabo