Vintage Glass Jelly Moulds

glass jelly moulds

The vintage trend is everywhere – clothes, home decor and cooking are going retro with a vengeance. Meanwhile on the television the likes of Kirsty Allsop and ‘The Great British Sewing Bee’ programme are championing traditional crafts and the best parts of running a house the way your grandmother used to. It’s quaint, it’s sweet and it’s all quite easy to achieve.

Style up your kitchen with glass jelly moulds

You may not be ready to replace your entire wardrobe with vintage prom dresses, but a few decorative tweaks can give your home a charmingly retro style. You don’t need to replace your whole kitchen – unless you can boast metres of gleaming steel and glass, your existing kitchen units should lend themselves to some vintage dressing as this mostly involves some clever accessorising.

Now ideally anything you have in your kitchen should be useful as well as beautiful, so choose carefully. Wares of Knutsford has an ideal selection of retro themed kitchenwares including Mason Cash mixing bowl and enamelware. However some of our favourite items are the vintage glass jelly moulds. Available in two shapes, round and oblong, the mould has a genuinely vintage look and, best of all, is actually really useful for presenting beautifully shaped jellies, blancmanges and similar retro desserts – for adults as well as children!

Blancmange recipe for glass jelly moulds

Like chicken Kiev, prawn cocktail and vol au vents, blancmange fell out of fashion for a while, but now it’s back! A glass vintage jelly mould is perfect for this recipe.

  • 300ml full fat milk
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground almonds
  • 5 leaves of gelatine
  • 425ml double cream
  • 600g ripe strawberries, hulled
  • 1 and a half tablespoons icing sugar

Start by whizzing up the strawberries in a food processor. Pass the resulting puree through a sieve to remove seeds, then set aside for later.

Boil the milk with the caster sugar and ground almonds, then reduce to a simmer for about five minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside for a little while to cool.

Meanwhile soak the gelatine in a little cold water for five minutes, then squeeze out any excess and add to the pan of hot milk, stirring until the leaves dissolve. Add about three quarters of the double cream and the strawberry puree and mix well to combine. Pour the mixture into your jelly moulds and allow to set in the refrigerator overnight.

To serve, turn out the blancmange and whip up the remaining cream with the icing sugar to decorate.

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Save Money Buying Bulk Jars

bulk jars

Organised types will be preparing for their cooking year by stocking up on the equipment they will need for preserving, baking and barbecuing. Planning ahead can not only save you time and stress later on but also money. If you know what you will need you can take advantage of special offers when they come up and can buy in bulk to save you running out of essentials at the last moment, allowing you to take advantage of economies of scale with bulk buy bargain prices. Wares of Knutsford’s bargain jars in bulk buy package sizes are one of our most popular products, offering both convenience and excellent value for money.

Buy in bulk jars

Wares of Knutsford’s jars in bulk buy packs are offered in an impressive range of styles. There are 192 jars with lids in every pack, and as usual Wares charges the same flat postage rate no matter how big your order, so you can add as much as you like to your online basket without having to worry about mounting postage costs.

Along with the traditional, standard jam jars and versatile 190ml jar you can choose from square and hexagonal styles, while there is also a selection of more decorative styles. The bulk buy section of the website also includes some specialist jars such as honey jars, verrine jars for pates and pastes, Bonne Maman style jars in two sizes, clip top jars and miniatures. There are straight sided jars and globe shaped options, so there’s something for everyone.

There is also a bargain pack of 50ml miniature whisky bottles, ideal for wedding favours and other special events.

Bulk jars for cosmetics

Wares of Knutsford’s bulk jars selection is not just for the kitchen – there is also a choice of cosmetics jars for those planning either to start a commercial venture with their home made products or to give a lot of gifts! Buying in bulk always offers better value and can help small business owners to keep their costs down. Remember that Wares of Knutsford also offers wholesale prices for business owners, so don’t hesitate to contact us for details.

Bulk buy cosmetics jars come in dark red plastic with a white lid and in clear or amber glass with a black, bakelite screw top. Sizes range from tiny 15ml jars up to 120ml.

If you’re looking for something specific but can’t find it in the bulk buy section, please contact our friendly and helpful staff as we are happy to create custom packs.

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Kitchen Craft Kitchen Accessories

clip top storage jars

Kitchen Craft is one of the UK’s best known and loved manufacturers of kitchen accessories. Founded by Thomas Plant as an ironmongery, the company is now run by his great, great grandsons. The firm focuses on retaining the traditional values of its heritage and combining them with a keen eye for modern trends in cooking and design. Wares of Knutsford is pleased to offer a variety of products from this well respected British name in kitchen accessories, including the Classic Collection, the Italian Collection and the Natural Elements range.

The Kitchen Craft Classic Collection

At Wares we are big fans of vintage and enjoy celebrating the best of the past. The Classic Colleciton does just that but adds a contemporary edge for modern usability. For example, the collection includes a whistling kettle in 2.3 litre size, available in black, cream or stainless steel. There’s no mistaking that classic whistling sound, but these kettles are built to use in modern kitchens so can be used on any kind of hob including induction. The kettle comes with a ten year guarantee and features a flip top whistle and a clear ‘Max Fill’ mark. Co-ordinating items are available.

The polka dot stoneware range is another great example of kitchenware which will complement a traditional, rustic or modern classic kitchen, featuring pastel spots on a neutral, cream background. The range includes storage jars, a bread bin, butter dish, pitchers and jugs, mugs, toast rack, egg cup, cake tins, a composter, egg cosies, a teapot and a sugar pot and cream jug set – everything you need to create a modern rustic look in any kitchen!

Other accessories by Kitchen Craft

Kitchen accessories should be as useful as they are beautiful, a philosophy fully embraced by the brand. Among other items, Wares of Knutsford offers labels, chopping boards, rotary whisks, kitchen scales, chopping boards, fondue sets and all sorts of other cooking items including both essentials and the kind of specialist kit needed for more adventurous and exotic kitchen experiments.

Furthermore, the Italian Collection and Natural Elements ranges contain all you need to produce delicious and stylish recipes, whether you are a professional or amateur cook. Start with mechanicals such as mincers and pasta making equipment and continue with elegant oven to tableware in cream and soft mint green, while the traditional balance scales and accompanying weights must be the most perfect combination of form and function possible.

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Clip Top Storage Jars

clip top storage jars

At Wares of Knutsford we are proud of our wide range of kitchenware but ultimately, we are still all about the jars. Take our clip top storage jars, for example. We believe you won’t find a bigger or better range anywhere else on the internet – or in real life!

The Wares of Knutsford clip top storage jars range

The clip top storage jars range encompasses a dizzying array of sizes. The smallest is a tiny 70ml miniature and the largest is a huge and useful three litres. In between you’ll find 72ml, 100ml,120ml, 125ml, 230ml, 250ml, 350ml, 500ml, 750ml, 800ml, one litre, 1.3 litre, 1.5 litre, 1.8 litre, two litres and 2.2 litres.

The variety doesn’t stop at size, as there are clear and coloured glass versions and even a clear plastic option. Shapes include round, square, hexagonal, oval globe shaped and even ribbed jars. Jars can be bought in a variety of pack sizes and in some cases singly, but remember that the more you buy the cheaper they get!

You can also choose from a 20 piece clip top spice jar set and sets in different display packs, such as baskets or distressed wood stands. These are ideal for gifts or to help create a rustic kitchen style.

The main benefit of the clip top closure system is the airtight seal created within the jar, which helps to keep the contents fresh and in optimum condition. This is achieved thanks to a rubber ring around the lid, of which spares can be bought at Wares of Knutsford in packs of ten at 85mm and 100mm sizes.

How people use clip top storage jars

At Wares of Knutsford we are fascinated to hear how our customers use our products. While their traditional use is to store dried goods such as pasta, rice, pulses, flour, sugar etc., it seems clip top jars are a favourite way to house wedding favours or party favours for all sorts of events. Other customers tell us they use clip top jars to keep their crafting and art products in order or to help children keep their rooms tidy, as they are the ideal way to keep Lego, beads, small toy figures, hair accessories, make up and plastic jewellery at bay while being easy for children to find. Our clip top jars can even be found in ‘man caves’ and sheds, keeping nuts and bolts, string, cable ties, garden seeds and other ephemera in order. In fact, there’s very little they can’t hold!

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Mason Jar Mugs

Mason jar mugs

At Wares of Knutsford we are proud of the quality and variety of our jar range, and are particularly excited about some of our more unusual items. Have you ever considered Mason mugs for drinking? Not only do jar mugs offer a cute and stylish way of presenting drinks, they are also practical.

The Mason jar mugs range at Wares of Knutsford

Made of heavyweight glass with a chunky handle, Mason jar mugs are ideal for outdoor events at home or away – barbecues, picnics, parties, festivals etc. They are certainly more sophisticated than a paper cup and more modern than a hip flask. The lids mean they can safely transport drinks and are great for pre-filling drinks for guests at outdoor events. The lid prevents not only spillages but insects and debris from entering the glass, however the handled jars are not suitable for hot drinks or for preserving.

The range includes options with or without lids in a variety of sizes. Mason drinking jars come in 450ml and 630ml sizes in clear glass, with lids in a choice of gold or red and white gingham. Alternatively Kilner makes drinking mugs in clear glass in 500ml or in a choice of blue, green or pink in 400ml, embossed with the famous Kilner logo.

There is a choice of pack sizes, with items getting cheaper the more you order, so take advantage of economies of scale and buy in bulk to save money! As usual at Wares of Knutsford, all orders are subject to a flat postage rate, no matter how many items are in your online basket.

Don’t forget to order some paper straws to go with your drinking mugs for some classic styling!

A summer cocktail for Mason jar mugs

The glorious pastel colour of this mint lemonade will look super pretty served in Mason jar mugs with a straw, plenty of ice and extra lemon and mint to garnish – serious non-alcoholic cocktail style without a paper umbrella in sight!

You will need:

  • A large handful of fresh mint leaves
  • The juice of six lemons and the zest of three
  • Three tablespoons sugar cane syrup
  • Still or sparkling water

Wrap the mint leaves in a clean tea towel and bash gently with a rolling pin – bruising the leaves will help to release the flavour. Add the mint with the lemon juice and zest and the sugar syrup to a pitcher, then top up with the water. Stir well then sample the lemonade and add a bit more lemon or sugar according to taste.

Chill thoroughly and add plenty of ice to serve.

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Proud Supplier of Mason Jars

Mason jars

Wares of Knutsford is pleased to supply jars by all the major names – Kilner, Le Parfait, Familia Wiss, Leifheit and, of course, Mason. All of these jars are variations on a theme, made of high quality embossed glass with distinctive lids.

About Mason jars

Mason jars are one of the most popular styles in our range, used particularly for preserving. The jars come with a rubber ring inside the screw on lid which create a completely airtight seal when used properly, helping to preserve the contents.

Named for its creator, John Landis Mason, this style of jar was patented in 1858. Antique versions of these jars have become highly collectable, depending upon their condition, rarity and age. While the Mason jar is now manufactured under various names, the basic system remains the same and is as effective as it ever was.

Wares of Knutsford’s Mason jar range

Wares of Knutsford is a Mason jar supplier of three different sizes: one litre, 500ml and 250ml. They are sold in packs of six, 12 and 18 and include the familiar gold coloured lids. With a separate, heat sealable metal disc and screw band. Wares of Knutsford also sells a useful pack of 12 spare lids for one litre and 500ml size jars – while the lids can be cleaned for re-use it’s worth replacing them sometimes as with preserving there no room for error when it comes to allowing bacteria in!

How to use your Mason jars

While Mason jars are designed to provide the perfect conditions for preserving fruits and vegetables, our customers have found a wide variety of ways to use them. They make ideal garden fairy lights with a tea light inside, vases, containers for crafting tools and small children’s toys and to grow herbs in! They are ideal containers for wedding favours or certain gifts – such as when filled with the ingredients for making cakes.

Wares of Knutsford is also a drinking Mason jar supplier. These cute, handled jars make an unusual way of serving drinks. They come in 450ml and 630ml sizes and can be bought with or without lids. Mason drinking jars are ideal for long cocktails such as Pimms or a Long Island iced tea, or non-alcoholic refreshments such as real lemonade. Made of heavyweight glass with a chunky handle, they are sturdy enough to be used outside or by children.

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Beginner Brewing Kit

beginner brewing kit

In recent years Brits have fully embraced home brewing as a hobby. The trend for drinking alcohol in the UK is moving from quantity to quality, and beer drinkers in particular are focusing on taste and texture. Home brewing can produce premium tasting lager from only 67 pence per pint…

Beginner brewing kit by Kilner

Kilner makes beginner brewing kit in the form of a 40 pint pack, allowing you to make a unique lager in the comfort of your home. The kit is supplied with all the ingredients necessary for 40 pints of lager, including malt blends and yeast of commercial brewing quality, and is easy to use for home brewing beginners or more experienced hands.

While all ingredients are included, some equipment is necessary for successful home brewing. This can easily be purchased as the Kilner Complete Equipment Starter Kit, or you can go for the Kilner Complete Lager Set, a brewing kit for beginners which includes both equipment and ingredients. The Equipment Starter Kit can also be used with other Kilner home brewing kits, such as the make your own bitter, cider and wine kits.

How to use a beginner brewing kit

The process is simple and kits come with a full set of instructions. Before beginning it’s important to sterilise and rinse all your equipment. Meanwhile, place your bag of malt in hot water to soften for a quarter of an hour. The contents can then be emptied into the fermentation bucket. Stir in three litres of hot water to dissolve the malt, then top up the bucket contents to 23 litres with a hot and cold mix to result in a final temperature of 20-25C.

When the temperature is correct, add the yeast and stir in well, then use the hydrometer and trial jar to measure the starting gravity of your brew. Then cover your fermentation bucket with the lid supplied, without snapping closed so that fermentation gases can escape. Allow to ferment for eight days at between 18-24C. After this you can test your brew again, at which you should receive a reading of 1008 or lower. Repeat this process the next day to ensure the stability of the brew. If your reading is above 1008, leave the brew a few more days then retest.

Your brew should then be ready for bottling, with the addition of sugar. The sealed bottles should then be left at an ambient for seven days before being moved somewhere cool for another week. Once the lager is clear, the brew is ready to drink and enjoy!

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Kilner Homebrew Starter Kit

Homebrew Starter Kit

If you’re planning to indulge in a little home brewing this year, Kilner’s home brew starter kit has all the equipment necessary for a successful brew for amateur or experienced home brewers. Home brewing has taken off as an incredibly popular hobby in the UK, as an enjoyable and affordable way to enjoy premium quality drinks. Wares of Knutsford has responded to demand by building up this category to include everything you need, from equipment to ingredients.

Kilner Homebrew Starter Kit

The home brew starter pack contains the essential kit needed for home brewing lager, bitter, cider or even wine – you just need to add the ingredients. The pack includes 100g of steriliser, a trial jar and hydrometer for measuring the gravity or alcohol content of your home brew, a 35cm bottle brush, a 45cm mixing spoon, a siphon with a tap and sediment trap, 50 crown caps with knock on bottle capper and a 25 litre fermentation bucket.

The kit contains the necessary equipment for cleaning and sterilising and for the fermentation process, plus some bottling equipment. You can choose from a wide range of bottles for your home brew at Wares of Knutsford, including traditional beer and wine bottles and some more modern and decorative options, such as swing stopper bottles and even a demijohn in green glass.

Wares of Knutsford also stocks all the spares and extra bits you need, from bottles and bottle tops to new bottle brushes, hydrometers, air lock and bungs and trial jars. Experienced home brewers can easily update their kit when necessary from Wares of Knutsford’s home brewing department.

Ingredients for the homebrew starter kit

With your equipment all ready, you just need the ingredients, which can be bought in handy ‘Make Your Own’ packs from Wares of Knutsford. Kilner sells kits for making your own lager, cider and bitter plus Pinot Grigio and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. These kits contain all the ingredients you need, simply add water, and you could be drinking your own unique, home brew from just 67 pence per pint. All the ingredients supplied are of the highest, commercial quality.

You can also buy the equipment and ingredients kits for lager, bitter and cider all in one, which is an ideal way for beginners to get started with home brewing.

All the kits include detailed, step by step instructions and the Kilner website is full of helpful information for home brewers.

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Wedding Fayres for Wedding Favours

wedding favours

If you’re planning a wedding right now you’re probably trying your best to create an event that is unique to you and your other half. You may have spent months browsing the bridal magazines and attending every wedding fayre within a 50-mile radius but it can still be hard to get your hands on the elements that will truly say ‘us’ on your big day.

This is one of the reasons why more and more people are opting to create their own wedding features these days. From table centre-pieces to chair decorations, it seems that DIY has been given a new lease of life when it comes to wedding planning. Wedding favours, in particular, are regularly ‘home-made’ allowing the bride and groom to put their own stamp on the gifts they offer and ensure that they are perfectly suited to the people who will receive them.

Wedding favours inspiration

Wedding favours don’t have to be complex, they just have to say something about you and your guests. They should be small enough to not take up too much space on the table but big on personality in order to delight or amuse. To help you out, Wares of Knutsford has a beautiful selection of jars and bottle just waiting for you, or your friends and family, to fill. These have all been hand-picked for their elegance and practicality, leaving you free to spend more of your time deciding on what the contents should be.

Ideas for DIY wedding favours

The contents of your chosen bottles or jars are only limited by your imagination – and budget, of course. Your wedding favour ideas should be based on the type of wedding you’re planning and the type of guests who will be there. If it’s a fun and funky theme, the young and young-at-heart with be thrilled with a jar filled with retro sweets, whilst bottles filled with a heady cocktail are perfect for a more grown-up affair. For sheer sophistication, you could offer your guests a single flower in a beautiful bottle or a sparkling gem within a stunning jar. If you’re planning a small gathering, how about creating your very own message in a bottle for each of the guests who attend? You don’t have to say much but what you do say is sure to be appreciated and demonstrate a level of thought and feeling that no mass-produced favour could ever hope to copy.

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Marmalade Labels

marmalade labels

The preserve on everyone’s to do lists at this time of year is marmalade, with its unusual, bittersweet taste and rich, golden colour. Marmalade can be made not only with oranges but also lemons, mandarins or other members of the citrus fruit family, and brings a taste of summer to the winter breakfast table.

You might be making just a small batch of marmalade to use up a glut of fruit, or considering a commercial endeavour to make money out of your marmalade making skills. Either way, put a bit of effort into presentation. This involves not only sourcing some attractive bottles but also labels for marmalade that both help to make your produce look attractive but also comply with legal regulations.

Regulations for commercial marmalade labels

Trading standards provide some very specific requirements for marmalade labels if you are planning to sell your product. First you must ensure that the name of the main type of fruit used is mentioned – for example ‘orange marmalade’ – the same applies if mixed fruit is used, so ‘orange and lemon marmalade’. Ingredients must be listed in descending weight order, including the proportion of fruit per 100g of product and the amount of sugar per 100g in the finished product. You can buy a refractometer to measure the sugar content for you.

These rules are specific to jams and marmalades and are in addition to the general labelling rules, which include that you must state the name of the product, specific allergenic ingredients used, a use by date, storage and usage conditions, your name and address and the net quantity.

If you are planning to sell your produce, contact your local trading standards office to make sure your labelling complies with regulations or you could face legal difficulties.

Attractive marmalade labels

Once you have the legal business in hand, you can get back to the main purpose of your labels, which is to make your product unique and eye catching. Fortunately Wares of Knutsford has a great selection of labels for marmalade jars, including some decorated with watercolour paintings by mother and daughter artist team Rosemary and Caroline Wagstaff.

The choice of colours includes cornflower blue, ocean blue, periwinkle, coral, olive green, forest green, sunshine or rose red, with patterns including polka dots, stripes and gingham. The Words of Art range includes labels with colourful fruit borders, which are ideal for jams and marmalades, and some funky modern labels featuring the Union Flag or a royal crown, plus themed labels specially for honey, vegetable products or spices.

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Product of the Month – 190ml Deluxe Versatile Jar

versatile jar

If you’re looking for jam jars that are as sturdy and practical as they are attractive then the Wares of Knutsford Product of the Month is the ideal choice.

The 190ml Deluxe Food/Jam Jar is a versatile jar that is perfect for a whole host of contents and would look great in your kitchen – or in someone else’s.

The ideal versatile jar

This versatile jar could be filled with a multitude of jams, marmalades or pickles. The choice of coloured lids that accompany it just add to its appeal and make it the perfect pick if you plan to give your homemade goodies away as gifts, or even to sell them. The lids fit much better than many of the products from other suppliers and their appearance is such that there will be no doubt as to their quality – or the effort you have put into making your creation. They are heat sealable and vinegar proof, ensuring that the contents will stay in perfect condition for months to come.

As well as preserves and pickles, this 63mm jar could be filled with sweets, chocolates, homemade fudge or other goodies. It would also be the ideal holder for wedding favours or as the base for an original table decoration at an important event.

A versatile jar available in versatile quantities

You can choose how many of the 190ml jars you need or want as they are available in packs of between 12 and 192. Just remember, however, that the more you buy, the better value they become. Even in the smaller quantities, they are superb value for the quality of the product but you can get even more for your money the bigger you buy.

Their modern appearance has made them a firm favourite with Wares of Knutsford customers and helped gain them the title of product of the month. The 63mm lids’ colours – whether plain or checked – are easy to coordinate with your own choice of ribbons or other decorations, to provide a truly unique touch, and their straight sides ensure that labelling is never an issue.

Even blindfolded, however, you could be in no doubt as to the quality of this versatile 8cm tall jar. Its heavyweight glass fills you with confidence and gives the impression that only the best products have been used to create what lies within. If you’re looking for a great value glass jar that delivers on performance and appearance, you have just found your perfect product.

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Blood oranges nutrition and eating guide

blood oranges

You can tell blood oranges are good for you simply by their colour. That is because the dark tones of their flesh are caused by anthocyanins, which are antioxidant pigments that are common in flowers, vegetables such as red potatoes, and fruit – although not normally in citrus fruits. This type of orange is also sodium free, cholesterol free and fat free and they are a very good source of healthy vitamin C. One orange can provide you with over a quarter of the dietary fibre you should eat each day, along with beneficial calcium, folate and thiamine.

Buying and storing blood oranges

If you have been tempted by their nutrition value – and their great taste, you should choose fruit that haven’t got any soft spots and those that feel heavier than they look for their size. They will keep for around a week at room temperature or for up to three weeks in the fridge. To ensure you always have to fruity tang of these oranges to hand, they are excellent for making marmalade.

More blood oranges nutrition facts

There are three main varieties of this type of blood oranges that are widely available in late winter. There are Taroccos, mainly grown in Italy, Sanguinellos, from Spain, and the newest, the Moro. Other varieties include the Khanpur, Maltese, Ruby Blood, Delfino, Vaccaro and Red Valencia. Do not mistake Vainiglia Sanguignos and Cara Cara Navels with the typical blood orange as their pigment is created by the addition of lycopene and not anthocyanins. The seedless Tarocco variety is renowned for having more vitamin C in it than any other type of orange grown in the world today. This is put down to it growing in the fertile soil around Mount Etna. A scientific study of the juice of the Moro found that it could improve liver steatosis, although the test was carried out on mice. There are some people, however, who believe that drinking this juice or eating the fruit could help to prevent a fatty liver from developing.

The blood orange in cooking

Blood orange marmalade is particularly tasty, benefiting greatly from the raspberry tones in the oranges, and the zest is great used in cakes, cookies and even stir fries. The sliced fruit can make a mouth-watering addition to salads, such as a Sicilian winter salad made up of sliced orange, fennel and olive oil, and they can be used to make vinaigrette-style dressings and even sorbet, soda and beer.

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Eat the season with February fresh foods

Eat the season

It may be chilly outside but the abundance of February fresh foods is enough to warm even the coldest cook’s heart. It may no longer be the season to be jolly but it sure is the season to enjoy creamy cauliflower, hearty kale, glorious game and some of the finest produce the sea has to offer.

Eat the season: Meat and fish

We’re into the final weeks of the game season and so it’s time to fill up on hearty hare, sumptuous venison, and decadent guinea fowl and partridge. Turkey is also still around – if enough time has passed since Christmas for you to allow it back on the menu again. Enjoy rich gravies and sauces, innovative stuffings and lashings of pickles, for a menu that will have no trouble banishing the winter blues.

Continue to eat the season with seafood and fish dishes on your February menu, you’ll be spoilt for choice. There is no better source of February fresh foods than the sea when the likes of hake, halibut, haddock, gurnard, dab, Dover sole, red mullet, turbot and skate are just waiting to be devoured. The only difficulty you will have will be trying to decide which to cook first. What better excuse to use an abundance of ingredients to make a luxuriously hearty fish pie – topped with in-season potatoes, of course.

Eat the season: Fruit and vegetables

It should never be a chore to eat your ‘five-a-day’ in February with mellow cauliflower, tender purple sprouting broccoli, comforting swede and turnip and the sweetest of parsnips on offer. Meaty kale and traditional Brussels sprouts are the ideal accompaniment to a warming casserole, whilst Jerusalem artichoke, chicory, shallots and celeriac offer flavour bursts to complement a multitude of meals. Cauliflower cheese is an ideal midweek supper that will not break the bank or, for a real taste of the high life, treat yourself to some black truffles – or at least a shaving or two.

If you have a sweet tooth, homemade crumbles are the order of the day. There can be fewer better combinations in a bowl than tender rhubarb, buttery crumble and lashings of creamy custard. Who says winter has to be bleak? Seek out perfectly ripe blood oranges, clementines, pineapples and pomegranate for a vibrant fruity feast, or turn to windward bananas, lemons, passion fruit and kiwi fruit for a real taste of the summer sun to come.

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Buy Pitcher Jugs Online

pitcher jugs

A pitcher jug is rarely found on any list of essential kitchen items, but once you have one you’ll be surprised at just how useful it is. Pitcher jugs are useful not only for their capacity to hold large quantities of liquid, but they’re also very versatile. They can be used on a simply decorative basis, to serve drinks, as a vase for flowers and are also an attractive way to store those kitchen items that you like to keep to hand on the worktop rather than stored away in a drawer.

Polka dot pitcher jugs range

This selection of attractive jugs from the Classic Collection is made of stoneware and decorated with a pretty, pastel coloured polka dot pattern on a cream background. The classic design makes them look at home in rustic and traditional style kitchens and the jugs are dishwasher safe. This style is available in three sizes: 500ml, one litre and 1.3 litres, and matching mugs, a sugar pot and storage caddies are also available.

If the traditional style is for you but the polka dots don’t fit your kitchen, a series of three, cream coloured churn jugs offers a similar effect.

Kilner pitcher jugs

The well known Kilner range includes a very cute red pitcher jug in powder coated steel. With a two litre capacity it’s ideal for pouring liquids or as a vase for displaying flowers. It also comes with a matching red enamel jam pan, both of which co-ordinate beautifully with the red enamelware available from Wares of Knutsford. If you’re trying to create a country kitchen look in your home, these items will make a big impact, helping you to achieve the style without spending too much money on a complete kitchen refit.

Displaying flowers in a pitcher jug

Flowers help to create that ‘heart of the home’ feel in a kitchen. A pitcher jug of flowers looks more relaxed than a carefully arranged hothouse display, so look out for romantic, cottage garden style flowers such as sweet peas, lavender, daffodils, daisies and pinks – if you can pick them wild rather than buying them, even better! Make sure you add plenty of foliage and keep the jug topped up with water.

Don’t feel you have to use the flowers as a table centrepiece, as leaving the jug casually on a worktop or shelf adds an effortless feel to your attempts to create the country kitchen feel.

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Mason Cash Cookware UK

Mason Cash cookware UK

Mason Cash is a traditional British company known for its fine pottery cookware, which it has been making for over 200 years. Its products look great in any British kitchen, whether modern or traditional in style.

Mason Cash cookware UK origins

Started in Church Gresley in Derbyshire, the pottery took advantage of deposits of clay and coal found locally. The ‘Mason’ part of the name comes from a colourful Master Potter in the 1800s with the nickname ‘Bossy’ Mason. In 1901 the pottery was acquired by Thomas Cash, who added his own name to the business to come up with ‘Mason Cash and Co’. The pottery became famous for its white and cane coloured glazed earthenware.

Mixing bowls were a staple product of the firm as far back as the 1800s, but when Thomas Cash took charge in 1901 the firm come up with its own distinctive style. This iconic mixing bowl is almost exactly the same now as it was more than 100 years ago, recognisable by the unique pattern decorating the exterior.

Over the last century the firm has expanded its ranges and since 2007 has been owned by the Rayware Group, however it retains the traditional style and quality that the Mason Cash name has become known for.

The modern Mason Cash cookware UK range

Along with white and cane mixing bowls in a variety of sizes, Mason Cash has carefully brought its range up to date without diverging from its distinctive traditional blueprint. You can now add a Mason Cash mixing bowl to complement your kitchen decor, with ‘Zest’ and ‘Heart’ ranges available in cream, pink, red, green and lemon yellow, featuring fresh colours and updated versions of the Mason Cash cookware UK exterior molding.

Apart from mixing bowls there are also pudding basins, baking dishes and a smart terracotta range, all of which looks good enough to go straight from oven to table.

Traditional cream pudding basins are available in seven sizes, either individually or as a set. The Zest and Heart ranges feature 14cm ad 16cm pudding basins to complement the mixing bowls. Mason Cash bakeware comes in round, oval and rectangular shapes and is known for its strength and durability. The products are microwave, freezer and dishwasher safe and work as well in a professional kitchen as making a Sunday roast at home.

The terracotta range includes a number of open casseroles in different sizes, a covered casserole, rectangular and square baking dishes, an exotic tagine, baking stone, wine cooler and a bread form, to cover all your kitchen needs.

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Liqueur Mini Bottles

liqueur mini bottles

At Wares of Knutsford we’ve noticed that our customers have been using our mini liqueur bottles for all sorts of things apart from liqueurs!

Uses for liqueur mini bottles

First of all, of course, you can use our liqueur mini bottles for liqueurs. Whether you are making them for personal use, to give as gifts or to sell, you are sure to be able to find an appropriate bottle among our huge range. There are classic whiskey bottle shapes and fancy, decorative bottles, all available in packs of six, 12, 24 or 36.

Our small bottle selection is also popular with those making wedding favours, to hold essential oils, craft supplies or small quantities of ingredients. They are great for sample sizes of cosmetics and aromatherapy products too.

Bottles are available in clear, blue, amber and green glass, with 5ml smallest size in the range. A number of different caps are offered including screw tops, corks, droppers or swing stoppers.

Recipes for liqueur mini bottles

If you have a winter wedding coming up or simply fancy spreading a little colour, try some jewel coloured liqueur in mini bottles – it’s cute, cheerful and warming on a cold day!

Blackberry vodka liqueur

If you still have some frozen blackberries left in the freezer and are all jammed out, this delicious, deep purple hued liqueur is a very adult way to use them. Quantities given make about a litre.

  • 750ml good quality vodka
  • 450g blackberries, fresh or frozen
  • 600g caster sugar
  • 250ml water

Heat the sugar with the water gently until completely dissolved, then leave the mixture to cool.

Add the vodka, fruit and sugar syrup to a large container, trying to avoid crushing the berries. Seal and allow to infuse for at least a couple of weeks. Stir carefully every few days. Strain the mixture through a fine muslin cloth into your mini liqueur bottles and store in a cool, dark place for a couple of weeks before using.

Damson Gin

This plummy liqueur has a sweet and sour flavour that works beautifully with hard, full flavoured cheeses such as a sharp cheddar.

  • 450g damsons, skins pricked
  • 225g sugar
  • 700ml good quality gin

Add all the ingredients to a large, wide necked jar, seal and shake gently to help the sugar dissolve. Store in a cool, dark place for 8-12 weeks, turning the bottle every few days. Strain into your liqueur mini bottles.

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The Best Way of Preserving Fruit and Veg Left Overs

preserving fruit and veg

There are plenty of reasons for preserving fruit and veg. You may have got a good deal at the supermarket that you’re unable to use all at once or your own harvest may have been more successful than you predicted, for example. However there’s no need for waste as preserving not only means you have fruit and vegetables available at different times of the year when they might not be in season and allows you to sample familiar foods with a different taste and texture. Learn how to preserve left over vegetables this winter to save money and get more creative with your cooking.

Preserving fruit and veg in the freezer

If you have room in your freezer, this is usually the simplest way to preserve. Berries and cherries respond well to freezing and can often be used still frozen, such as for smoothies or baking. Harder fruits such as apples and pears tend to work best if stewed before freezing.

Root vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, parsnips and squash are also easily frozen, simply blanch them first. The same technique can be used for peas, cauliflowers, broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and legumes. Leeks, spinach, aubergines and courgettes can be cooked before freezing. Vegetables cooked into soups, stews or ratatouille also freeze well, while frozen tomato sauce can be a lifesaver on numerous occasions! You can even freeze fresh herbs for a better result than dried.

Freezing is an efficient method of preserving ripe or slightly overripe produce and the results are best eaten within three months of freezing.

Preserving fruit and veg by pickling

Pickling is how to preserve left over vegetables creatively. You can go for a simple vinegar or brine or you can spice up your pickling mixture. You can pickle vegetables separately or in a mixture and use them in salads, sandwiches and with cold meats – they’re also great just for picking at and much healthier than crisps! All you need is a good supply of ingredients, a pan and some clean, sterilised jars.

Pickling is essentially the process of using a salt and/or vinegar mixture to prevent the growth of bacteria. Not only vegetables but also some fruits can be pickled, but the process works best for produce that is mature but not overripe. Like freezing, most pickled produce is best eaten within three to six months.

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How to Make Sugar Free Marmalade

make sugar free marmalade

Life can be harsh for diabetics – there’s so much sweetness that is denied to them. Fortunately however, marmalade doesn’t have to be one of them. Even more fun than just eating it you can make sugar free marmalade yourself! Oranges, clementines, mandarins, tangerines etc. are all in season now, so make the most of lower prices with a batch of home made, low or no sugar marmalade.

Make sugar free marmalade for diabetics

You will need:

  • 5-6 mandarins, peeled
  • 2 oranges, peeled
  • 6-7 tablespoons sweetener
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons gelatine

Add the peel to a large saucepan and add enough water to cover. Bring to the boil, strain and repeat. You do this to remove some of the bitterness which in ordinary marmalade is relieved by adding the fruit. In this case, as we use only the peel, boil and strain the peel three times and allow to cool.

Once you can handle the peel, finely chop it according to how chunky you like your marmalade. Return to the pan and again add enough water to cover the peel. Bring to the boil then add the sweetener and lemon juice, stir and reduce the heat to simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile dissolve your gelatine powder in a couple of tablespoons of cold water.

When the peel has softened, remove the pan from the heat and once the mixture has stopped bubbling, stir in the gelatine. Decant the mixture into clean, sterilised jars and seal while still warm.

Make sugar free marmalade for Dukan and other low sugar diets

This marmalade is also suitable for those following the Dukan diet and is great served upon Dukan bread or toast, or for Paleo dieters. In fact making marmalade or jam without sugar is healthy for anyone trying to improve their blood sugar content.

In fact you can make a number of sugary preserves such as jams and marmalades without adding sugar, once you get the hang of natural sweeteners. Honey, Stevia or a number of other brand sweeteners can be used instead of traditional sugar, and you will also need a sugar free pectin or, as in this recipe, gelatine to make the mixture set. If you find the end result lacks colour or flavour slightly, try adding a bit of lime or lemon juice, which works particularly well with black and blueberries, or cinnamon for stoned fruits such as apricots.

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Choosing the Best Slow Cooker for You

the best slow cooker

A slow cooker can be a life saver for busy people who still want to eat a healthy and hearty meal at the end of the day. If you don’t get home from work until late, no problem – your slow cooker will have helpfully prepared a nourishing dinner for you through the day.

Originally designed to help cooks observe the Sabbath while still preparing a meal for their family, the principle of slow cooking is very simple and each model works in much the same way. The idea is that you can throw some ingredients in the pot in the morning and return home to a delicious and nutritious meal hours later. However when buying your slow cooker the choice of models on the market can be bewildering so you have to decide when buying your slow cooker how you will use it.

The best slow cooker for complex recipes

Today the best slow cooker will offer clever digital controls with features such as timers which work with temperature controls. Essentially, the more dials and displays you see on the front of a cooker, the more control options you will have. If you want something a little more sophisticated than a turn it on and leave it stew cooker then you are likely to find these features helpful, however in many cases they go unused. For many people the simplicity of the slow cooking experience is what appeals, so consider if you really need these features before splashing out on a more expensive model.

The best slow cooker for busy families

If your priority is to get a large, filling meal on the table with a minimum of fuss, you need to look for something with a large capacity. Complicated controls may be redundant but a large pot is essential. Similarly you will probably be more interested in easy cleaning than complex cooking programmes.

On the other hand, if there are just two of you or even if you are cooking for one, slow cookers can still be useful but you will probably be better off with a more compact model – they take up less space and are designed to work well with a smaller quantity of ingredients.

To get the most out of any slow cooker you will need to experiment with different recipes and temperature settings. You don’t have to be restricted to basic stews and casseroles either – your slow cooker is great for curries, soups, cooking meat and even for desserts such as cakes, creme caramels or rice pudding, as the pot functions as an excellent water bath. Believe it or not it is excellent for making jam too.

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Wholesale Cosmetic Containers

wholesale cosmetic containers

It’s the time of year when resolutions are being made and broken. Among the traditional lose weight, get fit, spend more time with the children, a number of people will be planning to make something of their small business idea. If you believe you can turn your home made cosmetics into a professional success, Wares of Knutsford can help you as a cosmetic container supplier.

Choosing wholesale cosmetic containers

Unfortunately success in business is not only about the product. It’s all about the presentation and the marketing. You have to make people want to buy your product and packaging is one of your most important marketing tools. Wares of Knutsford’s aromatherapy and pharmacy bottles will show off your home made products to the their best advantage. Available in clear, blue, green and amber glass or plastic and with a choice of caps, they will make your products look professional and elegant.

When ordering your bottles, don’t forget to think about labelling as this is an important part of your presentation both aesthetically and in legal terms. Wares of Knutsford offers a range of attractive labels which you can order at the same time.

The wholesale cosmetic containers range

Sizes range from a tiny 5ml bottle to one litre with screw caps and droppers, plus a 100ml perfume spray bottle. Various pack sizes are available and as usual with Wares of Knutsford, the more you buy the cheaper they get. Smaller sized bottles are ideal for aromatherapy blends or for offering samples for customers to try, while larger bottles are available in traditional lotion or medicine bottle shapes.

Plastic cosmetic bottles

Wares of Knutsford also offers a range of cosmetics bottles in clear plastic in 50ml, 100ml, 150ml, 200ml and 500ml sizes with white press caps, plus a 250ml size with a white flip cap. Pack sizes are 6, 12, 24 and 36.

Buying from Wares of Knutsford

If you are starting a business, Wares of Knutsford can help you with your wholesale cosmetic containers supply. Buying in bulk allows you to make savings, with wholesale prices available to those buying in pallet sized quantities. Individuals and registered businesses can take advantage of wholesale terms and pallets can be made up of mixed jars and bottles in box quantities.

If you’re not quite ready for such a large order, Wares of Knutsford’s bulk buy deals offer great value for money and convenience. Bulk buy packs contain 192 bottles or jars and are supplied at Wares of Knutsford’s usual flat postage rate.

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