Friday, March 18, 2011

Using Recycled Jars for Preserves and Jams etc.

Howdie-Doodie Neighbours! Of course Agee Jars are best and they look lovely all rowed up like soldiers in their identical uniforms on parade.

As true scavengers ourselves, we use discarded metal-capped glass jars or if you prefer new ones are here.
A bit of technique is required in order to fill and seal them without breaking them through thermal shock.

Put the jars in a large roasting pan and add enough hot (not boiling- you'll break them) water to the pan, at least an inch deep but not so much that they float up.

Put the whole lot into a slow oven and heat until the water is simmering. the water regulates the temperature of the jars to around boiling point. This is because if they get too hot they will break just as readily as if they are not hot enough.

The caps should be inspected and any damaged ones- this usually means dents in the metal at the seal or the thread beads worn out- discarded. Then boil them in a pan or we put them in the jug.

Fill the jars with boiling hot preserve and fit the lids loosely. Return to the oven for a minute or two to sterilise the entrapped air.

Remove from the oven and tighten the lids, don't go too crazy or the thread beads on the lids will be damaged. Invert the jars for a moment, the liquid around the seal helps it to seal especially if you're on the third or fourth re-use!

When cooled, check the caps for seal by drumming on them with a fingernail. Any that make a dull low sound are not sealed and should be used up quickly or tossed in with the next batch for a reboil- don't forget to check the jar rim for chips and the lid seal for damage and throw out the offending article to avoid future frustration.

New caps should be available from here.

Neighbourly Regards. Kev.

No comments:

Post a Comment