1. Prepare glass jars by washing them thoroughly, then leave them to drain on a clean table, top downwards. Also wash glass tops.
2. Sterilise the rubber rings by putting them into boiling water for a minute or two.
3. Prepare vegetables by washing, peeling, scrap ing, or shelling them, etc., then cut into convenient pieces or leave whole.
4. Parboil vegetables in boiling salted water for five minutes. This is not absolutely necessary, but it is a safeguard, especially if the source of the vegetables is unknown. In the case of green-coloured vegetables a little carbonate of soda may be added, in the proportion of 1/2 teaspoon to each pint of water, and 1 1/2 teaspoons borax.
5. Remove vegetables from boiling water and plunge into cold water. This will help to set the colour.
6. Drain the vegetables, then pack them neatly into the clean jars.
7. Then fill up the jars with clear water - preferably rain water - add salt if desired in the proportion of one tablespoonful to two pints of water (salt has a tendency to harden, so in the case of peas and mealies it is better to omit it), adjust the rubbers, and screw on the metal covers partly. If spring-top jars are used, adjust the wire clamp (see Fig 3), but do not snap it into place. (Lids should not be screwed down tightly, otherwise the steam cannot escape and jars might crack).
8. Pack jars into the boiler, taking care that they do not touch each other. In the absence of a false-bottom or wire-rack, jars should be made to rest on straw, hay, strips of wood, or old cloths.
9. Fill up the boiler or saucepan with cold water to reach up to the necks of jars, although equally successful results will be obtained if water only comes up half-way of jars, as the steam will do the cooking, provided the lid of the saucepan fits on tightly. Put the cover on the saucepan, and set on stove.
10. Bring it gradually to boiling point, and keep it boiling for whatever time is prescribed in the recipes. The time should be counted after the water begins to boil, not when the jars are placed into the canner.
11. Ten or fifteen minutes before the jars are re moved from the fire, screw down the lids tightly if metal screw-top jars are used, or, in the case of spring-top jars, fasten down the wire clamp.
12. Boil the sealed jars in the canner or boiler for 10 or 15 minutes longer; then remove the jars, and put them out of a draught, or leave them to cool in the water. The jars should cool down slowly, otherwise suction will not take place, therefore unless allowed to cool in the water, cover them up warmly with a blanket.
13. Test the jars after several days by unscrew ing the metal screw or loosening the clamp of spring-top jars. If the jars are perfectly sealed the covers will not come off, but will be fixed on tightly.
14. Should tiny gas bubbles appear, sterilisation has not been complete, in which case the lids will also be found to be loose. If fermentation has not gone too far, the process of sterilisation may be repeated.
17. If liquid is desired to be very clear, salt need not be added to the water in the jars.
18. A little sugar added to maize or peas will im prove their flavour.
An admirable Home Steriliser.