Inadequate Water in WB Canner
Hi everyone. Rookie canner here. I've gotten a lot of useful info from reading the forums here. My batch of Annie's Salsa came out great! It's the first salsa my husband or I either one will eat by itself instead of using cheese or something to modify the taste.
Today I made apple pie filling using the NCHFP recipe. I used half the ClearJel after reading the forums on the subject here. Here's the thing...I'd never canned quarts before, and though my canner said it held 7 quarts, the only way to get a scant inch of water over the tops of the jars was to fill it to the brim. I expected water all over my stove and that's what I got. What dismayed me, though, was when I took off the lid, I found that my jar tops were barely awash! Unlike my stove...
Now, my pints had the habit of going "tink" as I move them from the canner to the cooling rack, or shortly thereafter, so I was pretty worried when my quarts didn't. After a nice nap and a few games of FreeCell and a couple of episodes of "Rifleman" off the DVR, I went back in the kitchen and was happy to find that they had, indeed, all sealed.
My question is, what's technically the purpose of the amount of water over the tops of the jars, is it to facilitate the seal or is it required for sterilization for some reason? Is my pie filling going to be ok, since they did seal?