In the last few years, awareness has grown as to the problems of plastic use and the damage that discarded plastics can do to our oceans and wildlife. Most of us now do all we can to recycle plastics whenever possible and to reduce our use of single-use plastics. In today’s post, we’re going to take a look at how to make use of a sustainable product - glass - and at how to reuse glass jars to rustle up some super-tempting desserts and other treats. Read on for some mouth-watering suggestions that are sure to be a hit at your next dinner party.
Cheesecakes in jam jars
The beauty of using jam jars for making desserts is that they show off every layer of the ingredients in a way that a conventional dish just can’t do. Try these sensational individual cheesecakes to see what we mean.
10 ginger nut biscuits, crushed
1 pack of cream cheese
275ml double cream
Zest and juice of 2 large limes
30 gms butter
6tbsp icing sugar
175gms raspberries or strawberries
Add the icing sugar, lime zest and juice and the cream cheese to a bowl and use an electric mixer to combine these ingredients.
Separately, whisk the double cream until it forms soft peaks. Add the double cream to the other bowl and combine.
Melt the butter and add it to a bowl, along with the crushed biscuits, then combine. Divide the biscuit mix between six clean glass jars and press down.
Spoon the cheesecake mix into each jar, filling the jars up to the bottom of the neck of the jar. Add the raspberries or chopped strawberries to the top and chill in the fridge. If you plan to take these cheesecakes to a party or a picnic, seal the jam jars with lids, before placing the jars in the fridge.
Trifles in jam jars
As we mentioned above, you can see all the layers of ingredients in any dessert that you make in a jar. Since the very essence of a trifle is its layers, that makes it perfect for serving in glass jars.
Start with a jam swiss roll, cut into thin slices and add these to the bottom of each jar. They don’t have to sit perfectly flat in the jar and, in fact, they look better if they sit slightly against the sides of the jar, so that you can see all that scrumptious jam and sponge. Next, pour in a layer of cold custard and then add a layer of fruit, to suit yourself. This might be fresh strawberries when they are in season, but out of season, you could always opt for tinned oranges or frozen raspberries (defrosted, of course). The next layer is the whipped cream and then finally the jelly at the top. Instead of making the jelly in the jar, make it in a bowl and let it set first, then mash it up a little with a fork, then spoon it into the jar.
The beauty of the trifle in a jam jar idea is that you can pretty much make it up to suit yourself - if one family member doesn’t like custard, for example, just skip that and add something else. Fancy the ingredients in a different order? Just pop them in the jar in whatever order you wish!
Breakfast in jam jars
So far, we’ve come up with a couple of ideas for desserts in glass jars, but what about serving some delicious and healthy breakfasts in glass jars, too?
One of the easiest ideas is to simply layer Greek yoghurt, fresh fruit and granola in a jar. It takes just minutes to prepare and looks as good as it tastes, perfect for setting you up for the day ahead. If you keep some frozen blueberries, raspberries and strawberries in the freezer, you can mix and match each day to keep it interesting.
If granola isn’t your thing, you can do the same with muesli, adding raspberries, for example, along with fresh milk (or almond milk), chia seeds, nuts and a teaspoon of honey or maple syrup.
If you’re looking for a filling and nutritious breakfast in a jar, why not try something oat-based? One great thing about oats for breakfast is that you can make this the night before, leaving it in the fridge overnight. Add oats, milk and yoghurt to a glass jar and combine. Stir in a teaspoon of honey and add some blueberries, chopped dried apricots or whatever other fruit you have to hand. Stir the fruit in and sprinkle a few oats on the top. Seal the jar with the lid and place it in the fridge overnight, ready to serve first thing in the morning.
We hope we’ve inspired you to try a few new recipes and to reuse some of the glass jars you have in the kitchen. Feel free to share your own ideas with us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.