I have been advised that due to the low flash point of beeswax (ie. the fumes produced become exceptionally flammable and could cause a fire) it should always be melted in a bain marie (ie. in a bowl over boiling water). As beeswax also has a very low melting point (approx 62 degrees) this should not take long.
I suspect that dipping the cloth in the liquid wax would result in a cloth with far thicker wax covering than required or even useful. So I am going to experiment with melting the wax and brushing it on. Will feedback later.
Forgive me if this post is full of typos but this
has been on my right shoulder for much of this afternoon. And whilst we now get on quite well and she no longer tries to give me multiple ear piercings, she does still have rather sharp claws and I am wearing a sleeveless top and my right shoulder is rather sore. Also she is moulting and so is intent on removing her loose bits of feathers. She does not seem to have appreciated that I am not a bird, I do not have feathers and I do not need the feathers I don’t have to be removed…..
Today has been a busy kitchen day. I think a month away has given me aga homesickness. So today I made, yoghurt, granola, kimchi (for the first time), granola bars, yoghurt cake and bread. But the most exciting aga experiment did not involve food, but this.
At the Artisan Fair at Byron Bay on Friday evening last week I came across a lady selling waxed cotton food wraps. This appealed to me on several fronts. First, no plastic, second the food can breath and third it is a lot prettier than cling and fling 😉 What appealed to me less was the price. So I had a go at making my own.
First cut your cotton. Taking the modern connotation of the word organic out of the equation for the moment, cotton is an organic substance, polyester is not. Linen or hemp would probably work just as well, but I happen to have a lot of cotton oddments lying around so I used cotton.
Place on a baking tray. Use an old one, you are not going to be cooking with it again.
Sprinkle granules (or grated) beeswax over the cotton and place in the oven. I used the aga on Bake but about 180 would be about right. Do keep an eye on it. The wax melts fast and you don’t want it to burn. It’s not as if you are making a souffle, opening the door is not going to cause a culinary disaster.
Once melted brush the wax evenly over the fabric (again using a brush that isn’t going to be used to spread beaten egg over your prized apple pie).
Hang up to dry. I put ours outside. It is a windy day. They were dry in seconds.
Wrap up your food.
You will have noticed that the baking tray is quite small. I wanted some bigger clothes. So this time I just sprinkled the wax, folded and sprinkled again (a bit like making puff pastry!). The wax melts through all the layers.
It worked just fine. So now I have sizes for cheese, for small bowl and for large bowls.
I had intended to read the paper now, but the parrot seems to have eaten it
10 thoughts on “food wrap and parrots”
Well, this is probably one of the most brilliant things I’ve seen yet! I’m assuming they’re reusable? Hand wash or delicate setting in the washer perhaps? Now “aga” had me flummoxed for a bit by I got it with context clues. An oven, yes? Is this another one of those Britticisms? ;p
I think handwash probably. Agas were actually invented by a Swede. They are essentially very large cast iron stoves. Originally heated by coal (as was my first) oil and gas are more common today and our current one is oil fired. They provided heat and have either two or four ovens (hot and warming) as well as top burners.
We use ours to heat all our hot water and several radiators as well as provide all the heat we need for a large kitchen.
In addition we have have two wood burning stoves which heat water and radiators. Consequently we only have our central heating on in the depths of winter and almost never use the water heating function.
I have never heard of beeswax cloths. I’m going to do some research. Hurray to you for making your own.
Please see edit about melting wax.
Great eco-friendly idea. Love it! I didn’t realize beeswax had a low flash point, I’ve always just quickly melted it without a double boiler. Good to know, don’t want to burn down the house.
I think it needs some modification to make it a little softer. Husband suggested adding a little glycerin. Some experimentation still to do.
I have been using waxed cloths for my daughter’s lunches for years now… I used to use baking paper until I came across them in a market. Now I make them too. There is always a way!!
Wanting to make some of these for Christmas. Just wondering how you are going using these a few months on?
They are still going strong. I wipe them clean with warm water and soap if necessary and leave to dry. I expect they will wear out eventually but so far so good.
Yes, no doubt they will wear out eventually, but so far so good, indeed! That is wonderful. What a great alternative to plastic! When they are falling to pieces you could cut them in to small pieces for your compost bin no doubt.