florrie2August 29, 2008

Hi Folks: Last year I canned many pints of applesauce and apple butter. Some didn't get eaten this year and I want to reprocess the extra jars it with fresh apples.

The jars were stored in the basement refrigerator and are still firmy sealed.

My DH is terrified of botulism, so I'm boiling the expired apple/stuff for a half hour before adding new apples.

What do y'all think?



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Boil it and eat but I wouldn't boil it and re-can it.

"The botulism toxin is easily destroyed by boiling, but the dormant bacterial spores are very hardy and can survive prolonged boiling. Unless they are killed by the extreme condition of higher-than-boiling temperatures (which require a pressure cooker), the spores will proliferate into active bacteria when the can cools down, and the toxin will accumulate. One precautionary measure is to boil any canned produce after opening to destroy any toxin that may be there. But all suspect cans, especially those bulging from the pressure of gases produced by bacterial growth should be discarded."

I'd dump 'em if you have doubts.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 1:36PM
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It's not necessary....if they were well canned to begin with they are fine now.
Besides if there HAD been botilism toxin in the applesauce, it would have grown and boiling doesn't kill the toxin the botulism spoors produce.
Applesauce is a very low risk food and if you cooked it in a boiling water bath for the reccommended time and there is no mould and it doesn't smell putrid, it'ss afe to eat and boiling for an additional 30 minutes won't help.
Linda C

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 1:58PM
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florrie, if you processed that applesauce properly in a boiling water bath there's no reason to re-process it anyway, just leave it in the jars and eat it as you wish.

If you didn't water bath the stuff, I don't think I'd eat it at all. although it is a fruit, which is usually impervious to botulism, some jars of improperly processed applesauce have been found to harbor botulism, mostly because of the density of the product, I think. If you didn't heat process 'em, I'd sure be dumping them, refrigerated or not.


    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 5:16PM
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As LindaC and Annie said, if you boiling water bathed the applesauce properly, it doesn't "expire". Quality may diminish with the passage of time but it's still perfectly safe to eat. Lots of people can on a two-year cycle (rotating garden produce) and what they can is just as safe to eat in year two as it was in year one. Pickles soften, jams turn brown, etc. but it's still fine to eat as long as you aren't bothered by texture or color issues.

Apple butter is even less susceptible, due to the addition of sugar. Of course if there's a broken seal, that product should be discarded. At the least there's the risk of mold.

But I wouldn't re-can something that's been properly processed. The shelf life is far greater than a year, as along as the seal is unbroken.

I might add that recent research has shown that windfall apples have a higher pH (are less acid) due to bruising and lemon juice should be added for processing.


    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 7:20PM
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Thanks, everybody. The applesauce was properly canned originally, but I stored it in the downstairs fridge for lack of pantry space. It was still tightly sealed when I opened it yesterday.

I added some more apples, sugar and spices, then froze the new batch.

Should be fine now.


    Bookmark   August 30, 2008 at 3:09PM
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