Cake Making Equipment

Cake making

Wares of Knutsford’s range of baking equipment includes all you need for making, decorating, presenting and storing cakes of all kinds.

Cake making basics

Start from the beginning of the cake making process with mixing bowls. The Mason Cash series of mixing bowls comes in the traditional design that you will probably recognise from your grandmother’s kitchen. Made of high quality stoneware, it will be the foundation of your baking equipment and is as stylish as it is practical. Three different sizes are available with the classic cane design.

After beating up your batter, you can choose from a huge selection of high quality cake pans and tins, including muffin pans, springform tins, square pans, sandwich pans plus specialities like heart shaped, fluted, eclair, jumbo cupcake and savarin pans. There is also a choice of silicone loaf pans, paper fairy cake cases and shaped cookie cutters.

Make sure that your cake is cooked to perfection before removing it from the oven with our neat, stainless steel cake tester, and then choose from various sizes of wire cooling tray to allow air to circulate as heat dissipates.

Cake making decoration tools

Once your cakes are cool enough to decorate, Wares of Knutsford stocks a selection of icing and decorating tools, from the basic palette knife and professional icing smoothers and scrapers to fondant stamps and piping icing tools. These will help you come up with spectacular creations whether you are attempting your first children’s birthday cake or producing cakes on a professional level.

If you are making a basic sandwich cake, a wire cutter will produce neat, even slices.

Presenting and storing cakes

A handy cake lifter will help you move your final product from its workstation to the next stage in safety. You can present your cakes on silver covered cake boards in various shapes and sizes and choose from a selection of doilies. These are great if you are transporting cakes but still want to present them prettily.

There is also a stylish selection of cake stands, from traditional ceramic models to a funky, modern wire cake stand. These will show off your cake at its best and allow easy access for cutting, while glass domed examples work double duty by keeping your cake fresh at the same time. When serving, a triangular cake slicer and server will help to keep your servings neat and intact from cake stand to plate.

Finally, Wares of Knutsford stocks a massive range of storage tins with a great variety of shapes, sizes and designs. The airtight environment will help to preserve cake in its best condition.

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Glass Drinking Jars

glass drinking jars

If you’re planning BBQs and parties for this summer, take a look at Wares of Knutsford’s glass drinking jars selection, a funky way of serving drinks at events. Handled jars are a great modern version of the old fashioned hip flask and are useful for picnics and days out as well as garden parties.

Handled jars offer a more creative and interesting way of serving iced drinks, cocktails, milkshakes, iced coffee, cider or beer. With a chunky handle, they are safe for children to use and the lid means you can stage a stylish picnic instead of using paper cups!

Try a delicious Pimm’s punch – you’ll need a bottle of dry cider, 250ml of Pimm’s and a few handfuls of fruit (a mix of lemons, oranges, apples, strawberries for example). Fill the jars to about three quarters full with cider, add the fruit and a straw, then pour the Pimm’s on top so it creates a separate layer of colour.

Wares of Knutsford is also pleased to be able to offer such an economical price for such a funky product – prices start at £10.50 for a pack of six!

Glass drinking jars by Mason

The Mason range includes clear glass handled jars with full lids in a choice of gold or red and white gingham, or silver coloured lids with a hole for a straw. You can also buy the jars without lids. They are available in 450ml and 630ml sizes. The jars are made of high quality, chunky clear glass and can be bought in packs of six, 12, 24 and 48 – the larger a pack you buy, the cheaper the jars get!

Glass drinking jars by Kilner

Kilner offers handled glass jars in clear and in a choice of blue, green or pink coloured glass. All glasses are 400ml size and are sold without lids. Coloured versions come in packs of three, six and 12 while the clear glass drinking jar comes in pack sizes six, 12, 24 and 36.

Flower patterned lids featuring a centre hole for a straw can bought separately in packs of six, which are also suitable for Kilner preserving jars. Don’t forget to order too a 24 pack of paper straws in a classic red and white spiral design!

Lidded jars are great for cold drinks but should not be used for hot drinks or for preserving.

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Jam Jars For Everything

jam jars

Wares of Knutsford believes that it has kitchen storage sorted, mostly by using jars. Buy jars and line them up so that you can see the entire contents of your house – kitchen, bathroom, craft room, office, children’s bedrooms, man cave and anywhere else – at a glance. To this end we have separated all our jars into categories to help you work out what to use and where.

Jam jars

Wares of Knutsford believes you can buy jars for jam of every kind on our site. There are plain, competition standard jars and more deluxe versions in sizes ranging from miniatures to large 725ml options. There are also 192 jar bargain packs which offer excellent value for money.

Small and mini jars

Popular with business for giving out samples, hotels and guest houses for individual servings and with brides creating wedding favours, the small jars range again encompasses plain jars and decorative options such as heart shaped or hexagonal jars.

Shaped jars

Ideal for gift giving and adding a touch of luxury to home made produce, the decorative jam jars section contains models which are as pretty as they are practical.

Kilner, Mason and Leifheit jars

Well known names in the preserving world, these robust, high quality jars work for professional use or home cooks.

Clip top jars

More user friendly than screw tops, clip top jars work with both modern and traditional décor. The wide range includes miniatures, terrines, coloured glass, hexagonal and spice jars.

Faceted and hexagonal jars

Another decorative option for gift giving.

Drinking jam jars

A modern take on the hip flask, handled jars are a funky way to serve cocktails and iced drinks at outdoor events.

Spice jars

Available with grinder or shaker tops, organise your herbs and spices to suit your needs.

Aromatherapy and pharmacy jars

Make your home made cosmetics look professional with our smart jars in amber or clear glass.

Honey jars

Beekeepers recommend short, squat jars with wide necks and high quality lids.

Le Parfait jars

The famous French preserving brand includes various styles.

Pickle, chutney and pasta sauce jars

Using vinegar proof, heat sealable lids for long term preserving.

Terrines, verrines and dip jars

Sophisticated styles for pates and cream cheeses.

Plastic jars

A safer option to glass when children are around!

Sweet shop jars

Easy access, large volume storage for sweets and treats.

Storage jars

Covering volume storage for dried goods of all kinds. A serious kitchen essential.

Decorated jars and jam pots

Pretty jars for tabletop use or gift giving.

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Packaging for Hampers

packaging for hampers

Thanks to customer demand, Wares of Knutsford has launched a new department specialising in packaging products. These include boxes and bags specially designed for the attractive presentation of jars, both commercially and as gifts, and a selection of sturdy cardboard trays to use as hampers. To make life easier, there is also a selection of hamper packaging to help fill out and decorate the other products.

Shredded paper packaging for hampers

Shredded paper makes excellent packaging for hampers, working not only to protect the contents but also to make the hampers look pretty. Wares of Knutsford supplies fine cut shred in four colours – brown, deep red, tea green and vanilla cream, all of which combine perfectly with our card trays, jar boxes and bags. The shred is straight cut to 2-3mm size and is sold in 1kg bags. The shred is ideal for small businesses creating display packs of goods or for wrapping gifts.

Use the shredded paper in cardboard trays, hampers, boxes and packages of any kind to create a gift tailored to the recipient rather than buying a pre-packaged selection of gifts which may not all be appreciated. Use the shredded paper with jars of food products or cosmetics, sweets, bottles, soaps, ornaments or small gifts of any kind – and then re-use it again later!

Decorative packaging for hampers

As well as shredded paper, Wares of Knutsford supplies ribbons, labels and other decorative items to make your hampers and gift boxes look special. The assorted jute ribbon selection can be tied around jars and bottles or around presentation boxes and hampers as a finishing touch and comes in a selection of muted colours and classic designs to combine beautifully with our display boxes and bags or any wrapped gift. The roll contains five ribbons in three different designs at 1cm wide and 3m long.

Take a look too at our vintage style jute ribbon, available in 40mm width on 2m rolls in green or natural colour. Again these are designed to co-ordinate with out wider range of packaging but also look fabulous tied around glasses, bottles, vases and jars to create a modern rustic look.

Wares of Knutsford also offers pastel coloured ribbons and a huge range of labels and tags to decorate your home made foods and cosmetics and to make sure your gifts get to the correct recipients!

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Glass Amber Medicine Bottles

amber medicine bottles

Wares of Knutsford would like to draw attention to its range of amber medicine bottles. These have a number of practical and decorative uses and can be put to great effect by a creative mind.

The amber medicine bottles range

The bottles come in 50ml, 100ml, 300ml and 500ml sizes. The two smaller bottles come with screw caps in black Bakelite in packs of six, 12, 18, 24 or 36. The larger sizes are available with screw caps in EPE lined aluminium or ridged black plastic in packs of six, 12, 24 or 36.

Amber glass is traditionally used for cosmetics bottles to protect the contents from the damaging effects of light. UV rays such as from sunlight can degrade lotions and potions, but the darker amber glass works as a form of sun protection to keep them in the best condition.

If this is no concern or you want to show off the contents, the shame style medicine bottle, with straight sides and high, rounded shoulders, is available in clear glass in 300ml and 500ml sizes.

Remember that Wares of Knutsford charges a flat delivery fee no matter how much you order, so take advantage of economies of scale and bulk buy! Wholesale conditions are available to small business buying in pallet quantities, so don’t hesitate to contact our friendly and helpful staff to discuss your needs.

Using amber medicine bottles around the home

While amber glass bottles have their practical applications, the rich colour can also create quite an impact when used around the home for decorative purposes. Try filling the bottles with a couple of sprigs of delicate flowers such as Queen Anne’s lace or something clean lined and simple such as eucalyptus. Group a few of the bottles together on a windowsill to create a charming vignette.

Try also grouping amber bottles with glass in other colours – try a display group with clear and blue glass, or line small bottles in different coloured glass along a table to update the concept of the centrepiece. This would work equally well at weddings and other events as at home.

You could also make your bathroom look neater and more elegant by decanting your cosmetics products into amber glass bottles. Label them so you know which is which, and see what a coherent look they add to your bathroom instead of the mismatched bottles that were there before.

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New Plastic Square PET Bottles

plastic juice bottles

Wares of Knutsford is pleased to introduce another new product in the form of a range of square plastic bottles made from PET plastic with tamper evident screw caps.

Plastic juice bottles range

The range includes three bottles in 250ml, 500ml and one litre sizes. The bottles are square for easy stacking and storage, with straight sides and neat, tamper evident screw caps available in blue or orange plastic. Safe, lightweight plastic makes them ideal for travelling and they can be filled with all sorts of drinks.

The plastic juice bottles are available in three pack sizes: 12, 24 or 36. Remember that the bottles get cheaper in larger pack sizes!

The benefits of plastic juice bottles

With the summer coming it’s more important than ever to make sure you stay hydrated. When you’re out and about it’s easy to forget to drink so carrying your own around with you can be useful. It’s expensive to always buy small bottles of drink, so consider making your own juices, cordials or smoothies, and filling the bottles with the UK’s very good tap water instead of buying branded water.

The smaller bottles are easy for small hands to grip so you can encourage your children to make sure they drink enough in hot weather, while the larger bottles are ideal for days out, sports events and trips to the gym.

Wares of Knutsford’s square plastic bottles are conveniently designed to stack and store using the minimum amount of space in your kitchen or larder.

Home made cordial for square plastic bottles

It can be difficult to persuade children to drink plain water so this healthy cordial is a refreshing alternative to additive packed fizzy drinks and commercial juices.

Citrus iced tea

  • 6 tea bags
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • 10 sprigs fresh mint
  • 300ml freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Juice of one lime

Make the tea in the usual fashion, with 1.2 litres of boiling water. Add the sugar and mint and leave to infuse for ten minutes. Strain the tea and allow to cool completely, then stir in the orange and lime juices. Fill the plastic bottles with the tea, keep them refrigerated and give them out regularly on hot days. The tea is also a great alternative to alcoholic drinks for barbecues and picnics – serve in a jug with plenty of ice and garnished with some fresh mint and orange slices.

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Mini Jam Jars 30ml

mini jam jars

Summer is approaching and with it comes wedding season, so Wares of Knutsford felt this would be a great time to introduce one of our favourite new finds: as a result of customer demand, we are now stocking 30ml jam jars, the smallest jam jar in our range and perfect to use for wedding favours among other projects.

Mini jam jars for wedding favours

Creating your own wedding favours is a great way of keeping the budget under control, keeping to a particular theme and making your event personal. Wares of Knutsford has found that mini jam jars and bottles are particularly popular with imaginative brides, who are filling them with home made jams, chutneys, liqueurs, sweets, cosmetics and lotions, among other creative wedding favours. The jars can be used not just for weddings, but for other parties and events when guests will appreciate a small gift to take away. At 30ml, the jars will fit neatly into table settings without getting in the way, and can be dressed with labels, ribbons or tags to fit colour schemes and other themes.

Mini jam jars for professionals

These 30ml jam jars in clear glass are ideal to give out samples of jams and preserves. If you plan to sell your home made produce, use 30ml jars to give tasters at markets and events to encourage potential customers to come back and buy more. Our miniature jam jars are also popular with small hotels and bed and breakfast businesses trying to create an elegant breakfast menu on a budget – similarly if you often have guests to stay at your home, you can recreate the smart, boutique hotel effect by offering a choice of jams, marmalade and honey in miniature jars with fresh bread and croissants at breakfast. They are a useful size to give a variety of foods in gift hampers, without bulking out the package.

The jars are available in packs of 12, 24 or 36 and in our bargain bulk buy size of 192 jars and ar more economical in larger pack sizes. They come with vinegar proof, heat sealable lids in a choice of gold, silver and black.

Wares of Knutsford is pleased to offer wholesale prices to business. Please don’t hesitate to contact us for a price list and delivery conditions.

Remember always to sterilise jars before filling them and if you re using them commercially, make sure you follow labelling guidelines.

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Candle Holder with Tea Light

candle holder

Wares of Knutsford is pleased to introduce a new product. The glass tea light holder would make an excellent small gift on all sorts of occasions but is equally tempting to buy for yourself.

Clear glass candle holder for tea lights

The round, clear glass tea light candle holder is so simple it would look as good in an elegant drawing room as in a cottage garden. It is 9cm wide and 6.5cm tall, making it an ideal stocking filler for Christmas and a great addition to gift hampers all year round. The candle holder comes with a tea light so it can be wrapped and gifted without any further ado.

If you are using the tea light holder in your own home, group it with other clear glass objects – candle holders in different shapes or vases – to create a stylish vignette. The affordable price means you can buy a few and group them together to create impact in an otherwise unremarkable setting.

As well as using a basic tea light to give a gentle glow to an unloved corner, you can use the holder to burn scented and coloured tea lights to give extra atmosphere to your home.

Creating atmosphere with a candle holder

There’s nothing as atmospheric and flattering as candlelight, both in and outside the house. Even unlit, a selection of candle holders helps to dress your house and give it that personal touch that makes it a home. With summer approaching, gardening is doubtless a priority on many housekeeping lists. If you can’t stretch to a complete re-landscaping, you can nonetheless make your garden or yard look inviting and attractive with a few easy lighting tricks.

For example, if you have a tree in your garden, organise some hanging tea lights – the candlelight shining through foliage will create magical patterns of light and shade in your garden. Similarly, line up some tea lights along walls and windowsills for gentle light to create an intimate and welcoming feel in the garden. The muted light works wonders to disguise scruffy borders and threadbare grass!

Summer’s light evenings mean you can get away without harsh lighting but as the hours pass, a couple of tea lights along a dinner table continue the momentum of a pleasant meal or gathering. Place between posies of flowers for a fresh and pretty look and to draw attention away from uncleared plates and glasses.

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Veg and Fresh Fruit in April

Fresh fruit in April

Speak to any expert on healthy eating, any expert on budget cooking or any expert on eco friendly eating and they will all tell you that seasonal eating is the way to go. Buying fresh, local fruit and vegetables while they are in season makes sense in every way – this when foods are at their cheapest and tastiest. April, like March, is still a time of transition for locally grown foods and there are some wonderfully colourful choices of veg and fresh fruit in April.

Fresh veg in April

Fresh greens take over from heavy root vegetables for spring, in the form of broccoli, kale, purple sprouting broccoli, leeks, spinach, salsify, spring onions and watercress. This last is a dramatically underused leaf in the UK. Its smooth, peppery flavour adds interest to salads and sandwiches and grows milder when cooked. Watercress soup will be a revelation if you’ve never tried it before. Used in juices, particularly with carrot, it gives a massive nutrition boost.

Fresh fruit in April

Much of the fruit we use in April has been imported, but will be in season in its home country so the same principles apply. While apples, pears, rhubarb and the citrus fruits of winter can still be eaten, shops will be stocking bananas, passion fruit and kiwi.

How to use fresh fruit in April

It’s hard to beat a banoffee pie for sheer sweet indulgence, but as spring is a time to lighten up, try using three of this month’s seasonal fruit in one exotic, healthy and delicious salad.

You will need:

  • 6 ripe passion fruit, halved
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 pineapple, peeled and cored and cut into chunks
  • 8 ripe kiwis, peeled and cut into quarters lengthwise
  • 3 bananas, thickly sliced
  • 10 pitted prunes, halved

Spoon out as much of the seedy pulp as you can from five of the passion fruits. Press through a sieve over a saucepan, extracting as much juice as possible. Add the sugar and cook gently, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat, stir in the lemon juice and set aside to cool. Scoop out the contents of the last passion fruit and stir in.

In a large bowl, toss together the pineapple, kiwis, bananas and prunes. Pour over the passion fruit syrup, stir well to coat the sliced fruit and serve immediately with cream or ice cream.

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What to Grow In April

What to grow in April

April is one of the busiest months in the gardening year – the days are lengthening, the soil is warming and the last frost should have passed. Your list of what to grow in April should include beans, cabbage, carrots, sweetcorn, cucumbers, herbs, lettuce, peas, peppers and tomatoes.

What to grow in April: salad

Grow a crop of mixed greens for variety and stagger your planting – salad leaves have a relatively short shelf life so you don’t want hundreds ready to eat at the same time. Start a few this weekend, a few more next weekend, a few more the next and so on to ensure a long cropping season. Lettuce is easy to grow in a sunny location, producing quick results. Complement your salad leaves with some herbs – basil, oregano, sage and thyme all love the warmth and the flavour of fresh herbs will really lift your cooking.

Cucumber plants can be very productive and fast growing so be circumspect in your planting – vine varieties tend to be tastier than bush varieties but need more room. Tomatoes can be grown by anyone, anywhere. They grow upwards rather than outwards so even balcony gardeners can have fresh tomatoes all summer. There is a huge variety of tomato seeds available, in size, colour and taste, so choose a few for bright and interesting looking salads. Similarly, peppers are colourful and flavoursome and need relatively little space to grow. Try a variety of mild and hot, big and small and different coloured varieties.

What to grow in April: other vegetables and fruits

Both pole and bush beans are ready to go in April. Plant on a 7-10 day schedule to ensure long term cropping and avoid a glut. Get sugar snap peas and garden peas in now for a crop in May, while carrots can also be planted now for early summer cropping.

Sweetcorn offers a fast and plentiful return, but make sure to plant in a square format rather than in a row so that fertilisation by wind can occur. The fresher the corn, the sweeter and more delicious the flavour, so only pick the cobs off minutes before you are ready to use them.

Cabbage is easy to grow and nutritious so do include it on your schedule for planting in April. Fertilise the soil well and give them plenty of water once the heads appear.

If you’re brave and live in a sunny spot, you may want to attempt to grow melons this summer! You’ll need plenty of room but kids love the sweet, tender flesh.

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Homemade Wedding Gifts and Favours

homemade wedding gifts

Spring has sprung and wedding season is approaching in the UK. Brides are under enormous pressure, both financial and creative, as weddings become ever more expensive and competitive. If you are a bride or a wedding planner organising an event for this year, consider homemade wedding gifts to enable you to follow the wedding theme, fit in with table settings and delight guests – all without spending a fortune.

Wedding favours are designed to please guests, sometimes to provide a memento of the occasion and to look elegant as part of a table display. Wares of Knutsford can supply materials for all sorts of imaginative wedding favours and out helpful and friendly staff are happy to help you out with ideas too! There is a whole wedding favours category on the Wares of Knutsford website but you could also get ideas on other sections of the site.

Personalising homemade wedding gifts

By personalising wedding favours rather than buying an anonymous gift, brides can ensure a co-ordinated table display and show off their creativity. Wares of Knutsford’s miniature bottles and jars are huge favourites with brides shopping for homemade wedding favours, but of course the contents are what counts. This means you can fill the jars or bottles with homemade liqueurs or cordials, jams and chutneys, homemade cosmetics such as bath milk or body lotion. By making your own favours you can also tailor to your guests – so children will receive a jar of sweets rather than alcoholic liqueur, for example!

Once you have decided upon your contents, you will need to decide how to present the favours to be personal to you. This can mean ribbons or bows, but should also include a label stating the contents and any usage instructions. These labels are ideal for personalising purposes, displaying a picture of the happy couple, for example, the date and location or a personal message to recipients.

Choosing bottles and jars for homemade wedding gifts

Brides seem to favour small or miniature bottles or jars, because they fit neatly into table settings without taking up too much room. Hexagonal designs are more decorative than basic jars and bottles and so are popular for modern themed weddings. Clip top jars are fashionable and great for guests to keep because they are easy to re-use. Look for more exotic or unusual jars or bottles to make your homemade wedding favours stand out.

Remember that larger pack sizes mean cheaper prices, and Wares of Knutsford charges the same flat postage fee no matter how much you order!

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Farm Shop Packaging Suppliers

farm shop packaging

Wares of Knutsford is proud to supply small business as well as individuals, and our new packaging department is an ideal place to source smart packaging for farm shops and other produce sellers. The range is elegant and simple, allowing farm shops to present their wares at their best without distracting from the product itself.

Farm shop packaging for jars

The new Wares of Knutsford packaging range includes a number of options specifically for jars. These could contain not only jams, chutneys, pickles and other preserves but also cosmetics. There is a choice of gift boxes in natural or green and in various sizes, in two or three jar options. The boxes come flat for easy delivery and storage and are simple to put together as and when you need them. The boxes can be labelled as required or left blank, as there is a window for each jar so that customers can see what the boxes contain. Jar gift boxes make excellent farm shop packaging with their neat appearance and easiness to use.

Alternatively, there is a selection of jute bags for jars. These too come in a number of sizes and in two or three jar varieties. The bags included an integrated carrying handle and plastic windows to display the contents of the bag.

With packaging for farm shops, home made jams and other items can become smart gifts.

Trays and boxes for farm shop packaging

The new range of card boxes from Wares of Knutsford will allow farm shops and other small businesses to make up attractive hampers using a selection of attractive products. These can be seasonal or made to order, as the trays are delivered flat for easy storage, to be made up as needed. Like the jam boxes, the hampers come in natural or green, in different sizes and in square or rectangular. There is also a card tray with a wood effect for a but of rustic charm.

The hampers make it easy to package farm shop products attractively – simply add some coloured shredded paper and some ribbon, also available in Wares of Knutsford’s packaging department.

If you run a farm shop and are looking for ways to present your products, don’t hesitate to contact our helpful and friendly staff for ideas and to ask for a wholesale price list. They will be pleased to help you create a uniform style for your packaging to fit a sophisticated, rustic or whatever sort of image you are going for.

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Sugar Craft Accessories

Sugar craft accessories

Have you been watching The Great British Bake Off? The show’s popularity demonstrates just how popular baking and decorative cake making have become as a hobby in the UK. Wares of Knutsford is helping customers to keep up with the trend with its Icing, Piping and Sugar Craft department, full of all the sugar craft accessories you need to create cake decorations from gentle experiment right up to spectacular, Hollywood style creations worthy of a film star’s wedding.

Sugar craft accessories for working with icing

Before decorating, you will need to ice a cake and Wares of Knutsford can supply a variety of foundation tools for this task. An icing smoother is indispensable for an even finish to marzipan, fondant icing and sugar paste, while the Icing Scraper Set contains both smooth and serrated edge tools to work with buttercream and royal icing. You can also choose from a carefully edited selection of spreaders or palette knives and an essential non-stick rolling pin.

Sugar craft accessories for cutting icing

When you are creating intricate sugar craft shapes, there’s a certain amount of manual dexterity needed. However even the most artistic bakers also rely upon an arsenal of icing tools. These start with a series of cutters. Wares of Knutsford’s icing tools selection includes cutters in a variety of basic shapes, in stamp and plunger styles. Use these to make fantastic ribbons, bows and swirls out of fondant icing, sugar paste or marzipan for professionally styled celebration cakes.

Tools include a easy to use embossing and cutting wheels, cutting sets in butterfly, daisy, leaf and basic flower shapes and a comprehensive cutting and embossing set featuring 17 different heads. There is also a lightweight patterned rolling pin to create an embossed effect on marzipan and fondant icing.

The department also contains piping icing equipment, including squeezy icing bottles and a selection of piping bags in various sizes. The Deluxe Biscuit/Icing Set makes decorating super easy with an idiot proof icing gun and a selection of icing nozzles and biscuit cutters.

For detailed work, the Icing Modelling Tool Set contains eight double headed tools to create a variety of modelling and sculpting effects.

A useful extra for simpler baking is a cake plunger, used to core cupcakes so that they can easily be filled with your choice of flavour – maybe buttercream, jam, chocolate spread or even fruit. The plunger maintains the centre section you have removed so you can create a decorative top.

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Vintage Jars and Bottles

vintage jars

The vintage theme is huge at the moment and the most popular way to style your wedding. Vintage also works very well for kitchens, clothes, restaurants and bars. If you are looking for vintage bottles and other accessories, Wares of Knutsford has a whole section of products dedicated exactly to that. Hunting down the genuine article is time consuming and can be expensive, while clean and undamaged kitchenware is extremely rare. Wares of Knutsford’s vintage selection helps you to achieve that retro look but with brand new, pristine goods at affordable prices.

Whether you are planning favours and table settings for a wedding, opening a small business or re-doing your kitchen at home, check out the selection of vintage bottles and jars at Wares of Knutsford.

Mason and Kilner style vintage jars

Wares of Knutsford stocks storage jars by a number of well known brands such as Mason, Kilner, Familia Wiss and Le Parfait. These kinds of vintage jars have been used for preserving and storage for decades – sometimes even centuries, and the basic design has barely changed in that time. What that means is that they are as practical as they are good looking, with a number of uses around the home.

Available in a variety of sizes, airtight lids mean they are ideal for storing dried goods in the kitchen, but a number of out customers use these kinds of jars for organising other areas of the home, including children’s bedrooms, craft rooms, bathrooms and even ‘man caves’! They also make a popular way to present wedding favours.

Sweet shop style vintage jars

Sweet shop style jars take on two basic forms. Straight sided glass jars with ball topped lids look classic and beautiful when filled with colourful sweets. However, like Mason and Kilner jars, our enterprising customers have discovered that the most mundane lentils, pastas and even flour can look elegant on a kitchen shelf when stored in these pretty jars.

Another funky style of sweet shop jar is the spherical tilt or tall jar, which has a flat bottom and side so that it can be used sitting upright or at an angle for easy access. Again these are great for organising around the home as well as in the kitchen, and come in various sizes, with a choice of coloured lids.

If you need to buy in bulk for a big wedding or event, or for a small business, Wares of Knutsford is pleased to offer wholesale prices for pallet sized orders. Don’t hesitate to contact our staff to find out about pricing and delivery.

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Sweet Jars for Shops and Stalls

sweet jars

Wares of Kutsford’s sweet shop jars category is full of sweet jars that fit the traditional picture of a sweet shop jar and some more creative options.

Standard tilt or tall sweet jars

The model described as a sweet jar is round with a screw top and flat bottoms and sides so that it can be tilted or stand upright. Don’t feel restricted by the description of ‘sweet shop jars’, because this model provides great, practical storage for all sorts of goods, in the kitchen and elsewhere in the house.

The clear glass container means you can easily see what’s inside, while the jars are easy to access when tilted, even when stored up high. This shape comes in a range of sizes, starting at 130ml and going up through 180ml, 192ml, 395ml and 870ml to two litres. The jars can be bought singly or in packs. The 130ml, 192m, 395ml and 870ml versions come with a choice of lid colours, while the 180ml and two litre versions come with silver lids.

Traditional sweet jars

Pot club jars offer a classic look for storage. They look great filled with colourful sweets but can also make even mundane foods such as pasta and rice look elegant. Group a number of the jars together for serious visual impact.

Pot club jars come in packs of three, six or eighteen and in sizes including 250ml, 500ml, 750ml, one litre, 1.5 litres and two litres. With straight sides and glass lid topped with a ball, this is a timeless look for any kitchen. The Bronte jar offers a more traditional alternative with a quaint look, in five litre, 2.8 litre, 1.4 litre and one litre variants. Using attractive storage jars is the easiest way to turn necessary storage into a decorative feature in your kitchen, bathroom, craft room or anywhere you want to get organised.

Modern sweet jars

A new addition to our sweet shop jars range is a set of modern, sleek looking storage jars with coloured lids. These come in 0.5 litre and one litre sizes and are very practical as they can be stacked on top of each other in any combination – ideal when space is at a premium. The secure, screw top lids come in orange, green and raspberry.

If you are worried about using glass, the sweet shop jars category also contains a number of plastic varieties of jars, for safety and easy transport.

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Green Wine Bottles

Green Wine Bottles

For home wine brewers, achieving a sophisticated and professional look for their product is quite important to avoid unflattering descriptions revolving around the taste of feline urine! Home made wine can taste downright nasty or, with the help of a Kilner Make Your Own kit from Wares of Knutsford, can be an enjoyable and cost effective way to produce unique and affordable wine of premium quality. Wares of Knutsford offers clear and green wine bottles for home brewers.

750ml Bordeaux Green Wine Bottles

The Bordeaux green bottles come in the traditional wine bottle shape, with a screw cap Nova twist plastic top. You can buy the bottles in four pack sizes – six, 12, 24 and 36, with larger packs offering great savings.

These bottles are ideal to give a professional look to your home made wine, but remember to add a label detailing the contents and any storage instructions.

Once you’ve finished the wine, the bottles can be reused for your next round of brewing or as candle holders, plant pot irrigation or for a number of other creative purposes!

Why use green wine bottles?

The use of green glass for bottling wine comes down to a mixture of traditional and practicality. First of all, wine stored in plastic bottles does not last as long as wine in glass bottles. While you may think this is of no concern if plan to drink the wine quickly, the process of making, bottling and distributing can be a fairly slow process, so glass is used to preserve wine in its optimum condition.

The very first wine makers used clay urns to store wine, but noticed that this had an effect on the taste and was difficult to store, so the ever practical Romans introduced the glass wine bottle. While traditionally different shapes of bottle are used for wines of different regions, the Bordeaux bottle is a good all rounder and the most popular style these days. With its straight sides and high shoulders, it’s easy to stack and keeps the cork wet efficiently when stored sideways. Some straight sided bottles have a more sloping shoulder line and these are known as Burgundy bottles.

While clear glass bottles are suitable for wines which will be kept in a dark place or refrigerated, green glass is used for bottling to help preserve the flavour of wine. Red wine in particular can be compromised by exposure to UV light, which can degrade the flavour.

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Basic Guide on How to Make Wine

How to make wine

Home brewing is becoming an increasingly popular hobby in the UK, allowing you to produce commercial quality wine at a fraction of the commercial price! Legally there are no limits in the UK on how much wine you can produce, as long as you don’t try to sell it. The process of how to make wine is easy enough if you follow basic winemaking guidelines and simply require some ingredients, equipment and a little patience!

How to make wine: the equipment list

A basic winemaking equipment list will include a large, lidded bucket with a fermentation lock, a siphon, a funnel, a trial jar, a hydrometer, sterilising equipment and wine bottles and corks to hold the finished product.

You can buy all of this separately or in a convenient kit made by Kilner from Wares of Knutsford. Our home brewing department has all you need either as a novice starting from scratch or if you simply need to renew some older equipment. There are also ‘Make Your Own’ kits which include ingredients not only for red and white wine but also lager, cider and bitter.

How to make wine at home

Before you begin, sterilise all your equipment – any nasty bacteria hanging around can rui your home brewing endeavours. The basic winemaking method then involves adding grape juice in concentrate form, water, sugar and yeast to your bucket. At this point the mixture will need to kept at a steady temperature of 21C-24C for a certain amount of time to allow for fermentation. Your trial jar and hydrometer will allow you to check on how the process is going and choose how dry or sweet you want your wine to be. Overall you are looking at a few weeks from beginning to producing something very drinkable. In general white wine is ready quicker than red, which needs more time to mature.

Kilner wine making kits contain clear and detailed instructions on the process – you can’t go wrong!

As you grow in experience and confidence, you can start to experiment with the combination and quantity of ingredients. These may not always turn out well but that’s part of the fun!

Patience is key to produce a fine tasting wine – don’t try to rush any of the steps or leave anything out. If you are not sure that your wine is coming along as it should, there is plenty of advice and help online for home winemakers.

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Preserve Setting Points

preserve setting points

One of the most important but, for many people, most daunting parts of jam making is how to determine preserve setting points.

Signs you have reached preserve setting points

All preserves are different and will reach setting points in different ways. In general, is a preserve is reaching its setting point you will notice that the mixture is boiling more noisily than before and that larger bubbles will be developing on the surface. You might also find that the mixture is not rising in the vigorous way it did earlier and is more settled in the pan.

It may only take a few minutes for some preserves to reach setting point, while other can take 20 minutes of more, so it’s important to be vigilant over your preserve pan and start testing early, otherwise you could easily pass the setting point and overcook the mixture.

Testing preserve setting points with the wrinkle method

Probably the easiest way to test for a setting point is by using the wrinkle method. Before you begin preparing your preserve, put a couple of saucers into the freezer. When you are ready to test for setting, take a cold saucer and use a teaspoon to put a drop of preserve mixture onto it. Leave the drop to cool for a minute then use the tip of a finger to gently push it. If the drop has formed a slight skin which wrinkles when you push, the setting point has been reached. If not, keep cooking and re-test regularly.

Testing preserve setting points with the flake method

For this method, stir a clean wooden spoon around in the preserve pan so that the head is fully coated in the mixture. Remove the spoon and allow to cool a little, then hold it vertically over the pan. If the mixture drops down the spoon’s head and hangs on the bottom, you have found your setting point. If the mixture slides off the spoon back into the pan, keep cooking and te-test regularly.

Alternatively, you could invest in a sugar thermometer, which is capable of measuring temperatures up to 250C. Stir the thermometer around in the pan to make sure you get an overall temperature reading rather than a hot or cool spot. Jams and marmalades are ready to set when the thermometer reads between 104-105.5C.

You test chutneys slightly differently. Use a clean wooden spoon to drag a channel through the chutney mixture across the base of the pan. If liquid fills up the channel immediately then the chutney isn’t ready. If the channel remains then the chutney has reached setting point.

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How to Sterilise Jars

how to sterilise jars

Before you begin the delicious process of preserving, there is one very important step you must take, which is sterilising jam jars and other accessories. It’s far less fun than cooking but is essential.

The why of how to sterilise jars

The process of sterilisation ensures that any bacteria, fungi, yeasts and any other unwanted organisms are removed from jars and lids so that your preserves will not be contaminated by them. If these nasties are allowed to remain in the jars and come into contact with jams and preserves, they can spoil your food and, even worse, could make you ill when you eat it.

So for the sake of freshness and your health, make sure you always sterilise not only the jars themselves but also any lids or seals that go with them.

Before you begin, check your jars and lids carefully and discard any which are damaged. Cracks, chips and other damage can hoard bacteria and can be dangerous to handle. Wares of Knutsford can supply supply spare lids to replace any which are not good enough to re-use. Before you sterilise, wash jars thoroughly in hot, soapy water and rinse well.

There are a couple of easy ways how to sterilise jars, but whichever you use, try to do it at the same time you are preparing your preserves, as the jars should still be warm from the preserving process to avoid cracking the glass when you fill them with hot jam and to help create an efficient seal.

How to sterilise jars

Firstly and most simply, you can sterilise your jars in the dishwasher, running them through a hot cycle. If you are re-using lids, remove any rubbers seals before washing and sterilising.

However, many people prefer sterilising jam jars in a water bath. You will need a pan large enough to hold your jars and lids, then cover them with plenty of water. Bring the pan to a rapid boil and hold it for at least 10 minutes. Don’t ever put your jars into already boiling water as the glass could crack, and make sure you use oven gloves or a set of special tongs for jam jars to handle the hot jars and lids.

Placing the jars in an oven on a low temperature used to be a popular method for sterilising but has fallen out of favour due to a risk of bacterial contamination from food stuck onto the oven surfaces, so unless your oven is absolutely spotless you are probably better off using one of the wet methods above.

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Jute Bags for Jars

jute bags

As part of our new packaging range, Wares of Knutsford is pleased to introduce jute bags, designed to show off jars of jams, chutneys, pickles or any other produce – even cosmetics or aromatherapy products. There are various models in the range, all including a soft cotton integrated handle for easy and comfortable transport and clear plastic windows to display the contents.

The bags are made of natural hessian, an environmentally friendly and biodegradable material which is produced in India. The reusable bags turn simple gifts of home made produce into a smart, inexpensive gift that looks gorgeous, and are equally suitable for small businesses to display their wares.

Jars can be presented simply in the bags or you can decorate by filling out with some coloured shredded paper.

All the bags can be bought singly or in packs of six, which offers a slight saving on the single bag price. As usual at Wares of Knutsford, customers benefit from a flat postage rate, so you can order as many bags as you like, plus jars or other items to fill them, without worrying about accumulating a huge packing and postage fee at the end.

Two window jute bags

The two window jute jar bags come in small and medium sizes. The small bag is 130mm tall, 180mm wide and 80mm deep and is designed to hold two small jars so that the contents are visible through the plastic display windows.

The medium sized bag is 190mm tall, 205mm wide and 90mm deep, to contain two jars of a maximum of 120mm high by 80mm wide.

Three window jute bags

The three window range is more extensive, with options in extra small, small, medium and tall sizes. The extra small size is 110mm tall, 225mm wide and 60mm deep. Small is 130mm x 260mm x 100mm, medium is 150mm tall by 320mm wide and 120mm deep and the tall bag is 190mm tall by 310mm wide and 120mm deep, and is ideal for small bottles as well as tall jars.

If the bags aren’t quite what you are looking for, our new packaging category also contains some smart cardboard gift boxes, again in two and three jar shapes and in a range of sizes. Colours are natural or green. The boxes are delivered flat and are easy to assemble, with an intergrated carrying handle for safety. The boxes also sold singly or in packs of six.

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