re-canning jalapeno peppers

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Yesterday, my nearest neighbor brought over a 10lb box of beautiful large white mushrooms, a 5lb bag of "baby" carrots and a #10 can of whole pickled Jalapenos and a dozen 1/2pint jars to put the peppers in.


He is an unemployed, single dad with a 20 year old developementally challenged daughter. He makes the rounds of some local food banks and this was part of what he got yesterday. He told me they do not eat 'shrooms, already has a lot of carrots and can I recan the peppers for him. He got the veggies for us cause DH tells him I'll can anything!


I canned 18 1/2pints of sliced 'shrooms and 9 pints of carrots. The Ball Book says to process pickled jalapenos for 10 minutes in a BWC. The can of peppers has a best by date of July 2011. I told him the peppers might be a bit soft or mushy if I re-can them. No problem for him.


Sooo, when I do the peppers, if I need more liquid for the jars, should I dump the existing liquid, and use the Ball recipe for ALL the liquid or just make up some Ball recipe to top off the jars? ..................Thanks, Pigzzilla

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Interesting. I'm not aware the Ball Blue Book covers canning a #10 can of already processed peppers, so -- no -- it's not covered and I would not recommended it at all.


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Recanning commercial products is not recommended. You will find that stated in the USDA guidelines.


This is what it says:

Is it safe to jar already canned food?

Often people think that they can save money by buying larger containers of canned food, transferring the contents (or leftovers from the first use) to smaller jars and re-processing it. Others wonder if this is a way to save leftovers from any size can for a longer time than they will keep in the refrigerator.


There are several problems with these practices:

(1) We have no safe tested processes to do this. In some cases, the way the heat is distributed throughout the jar during canning will be very different if you start with already canned/cooked food than with fresh. Excessively softened foods will pack more tightly into a jar, or arrange themselves differently and the process time recommended for fresh foods will not be enough for the already canned foods. Underprocessing can lead to foodborne illness or at the very least, spoilage and loss of product. You definitely could not just transfer the food and "seal" the jar. You would need some heat treatment known to destroy any organisms transferred with the food.


(2) The expense and time of recanning foods far exceed the cost savings of bulk or large-quantity packaged foods. To re-can food, you now add the expense of a jar and lid as well as the energy to re-can the food.


(3) Most likely the quality of the food will be greatly reduced in canning the food for a second time. The heat of canning does cause loss of some nutrients, and a second round of canning will further reduce the nutritional value. Textural changes from heating will be added to those already produced.


Without tested processes for re-canning foods, there is no way to know how to reduce the canning process and the default (although not a recommendation) is to process for the full time and temperature as if starting from scratch. When you consider you are not even saving money and resources, it does not seem worth the loss of food quality to practice this re-canning of commercially canned food. Our recommendation is to not plan to do this.



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