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Making Beeswax Wraps

By Kirsten Bradley and Nick Ritar 1 min read

They’re great for the environment and your kitchen too!

Every kitchen should be full of these reusable wraps. Use them in place of plastic wrap, but also to wrap bread and vegetables to keep them fresh. Beeswax wraps are washable and can be used again and again. Clean them with cold water and gentle soap as necessary, but we usually just rinse them in water and hang them up to dry. When the wax wears out, the wraps can be re-infused.

Ingredients

  • Thin cotton cloth of various sizes
  • A hand grater
  • Beeswax
  • Metal oven trays
  • Jojoba oil
  • A wide paintbrush
  • Pegs and a drying line

Method

  1. Cut the cotton cloth of choice into squares of your preferred size. We make them from 15 cm wide to about 40 cm wide.
  2. Preheat the oven to 100°C. While it’s warming up, grate the beeswax.
  3. Place a cotton square on an oven tray and sprinkle it with some drops of jojoba oil, then sparsely sprinkle the grated beeswax over the top, all the way to the edges. Less is more—if the wax is too thick, the cloth won’t be able to absorb it all.
  4. Place the tray in your warm oven and watch closely—remove it as soon as the grated wax has melted, about 5 minutes at most. Use the paintbrush to ensure the whole cloth is covered with the melted wax, all the way to the edges.
  5. Pick up the wax-covered wrap and peg it on a line until cool and dry. Repeat until you’ve used all your wax. If there’s excess wax on the oven tray, just press the next cloth into it to absorb it, and reduce the amount of grated wax you add.

Tips

  • Use scraps of cotton fabric, old skirts or pillowcases.
  • The jojoba oil helps the wax to spread evenly throughout the cloth. An eye dropper is useful for adding the oil.
  • Choose a paintbrush you’re happy to get wax on, because you won’t get it off again!
  • When you’ve finished making wraps, scrape any excess wax from your oven trays and add it to your spare wax supply.

Images and recipes from Milkwood by Kirsten Bradley and Nick Ritar, Murdoch Books, RRP $45.00 Photography by Kate Berry and Kirsten Bradley, Illustrations by Brenna Quinlan.

Kirsten Bradley and Nick Ritar left the city to start a small permaculture farm called Milkwood 10 years ago. They currently live, grow, forage and keep bees on a two-acre permaculture farm near Daylesford, Victoria.


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