i have a slight obsession with beets. especially pickled and marinated beets. there is a market near our house that i like to pop into several times a week to grab a jar or two. once i get it home, the new jar lasts maybe two hours. i just can't help myself. they are that good. they are also quite expensive, for beets anyway. they're $8 for a small jar and with the direction my beet intake is headed i could be broke by next tuesday. not really, but it is a pricey little habit. i think i'm going to give pickling them myself a try. i got some good canning and pickling book advice from some friends. now i just have to decide which one to order. it looks like an easy, but time consuming process and it seems there are many specific tools that are needed before getting started... a pressure cooker/canning pot, hot jar lifter, canning funnel, among other things.
my question is... have any of you canned before? i would love to hear about it. any suggestions and advice would be great. i would also like to know what your favorite thing is to can or pickle. i am going to try pickling beets first, but if it's something that i enjoy (and i have a good feeling it will be) then i would love to try canning many things. i picture my pantry being filled to the brim with jars full of pretty, colorful canned vegetables. is that what your pantry looks like? i can't wait to hear what you guys have to say on the subject.