How to sterilise Jars, ready for your homemade goodies!

I thought it might be useful to mention how one sterilises jars as I certainly had no idea until I wanted to make my first jam. Of course, the same goes for marmalade, chutneys, pickles and mincemeat (the Christmas cakes and my all favourite mince pie variety, that is!! and not the kind of minced meat Rachel from 'Friends' used for her trifle!).
What to do:

In the oven:

1. Preheat oven to 140c/gas mark 1
2. Wash your jar/s with mild soapy water and rinse thoroughly. However, do not dry! Instead..:
3. Place jars on a baking sheet, on a baking tray, in the middle of the oven for approximately 20 minutes or until you see they are completely dried.

In the microwave:

1. Wash your jar/s with mild soapy water and rinse thoroughly. However, do not dry! Instead
2. Place them in a microwave whilst still wet
3. Put microwave on full power for around 50 seconds or until completely dry

Things to watch out for: 

*Dry heat can damage rubber seals therefore, if you are using Kilner jars, it is best just to boil their rubber seals seperately rather than put them in the microwave or oven.

* Do not use metal lids, or anything with metal in the microwave, instead boil them, just as you would the rubber seals.

*Always put your jam or other in the jars whilst they are both hot. Do not let the jars cool down as, if they are cool, they could break when having something hot poured into them.

I haven't mentioned sterilising in dishwashers and agas and all sorts of other things I may be missing, just because I haven't tried them. However, if you have any other sterilising methods or tips, please do share them in the comments below.

Hope this was useful!

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