My garden is coming along OK. It's not going to keep me from having to buy things at the grocery store (this year, at least), but it's WAY better than past years. In the future I hope to have a harvest that will take us through the winter without having to buy ridiculously priced veggies.
With that in mind, I'm starting to give consideration to pressure canning. I prefer freezing most things since that preserves the nutrients better, but I'm very interested in having things like broth, homemade soups, and cooked meats canned and on the shelf so that there's more room in the freezer for the veggie harvest.
My freezer is only so big!
My mom had a pressure COOKER that she used quite a lot. I remember listening to the little pressure gauge rattling away and smelling chicken and rice cooking. I actually own a pressure cooker and haven't used it. I guess I'm a little afraid of it, too!
I found this site, Simply Canning, that has a lot of useful information for beginners. I'm inspired to overcome my fears after reading through it.
I don't want to purchase a new pressure canner ($$$$!!!). I don't want to purchase an old canner (safety issues). I've been looking on CraigsList and everyone else seems to be posting about them--in the WANTED section.
Do you do any pressure canning? Do you feel safe about the whole experience?