18.2.15

Beeswax Fabric

I've been thinking lately about how I can reduce the use of plastic in my kitchen.  It mostly comes in the form of Ziplock freezer bags (which we wash and reuse) and plastic wrap.  Both of which we are running out of, so I wanted to find an alternative so I don't have to buy more.  I did a little bit of research and came up with an interesting alternative which looked like it was just destined to be a fun project: beeswax coated fabric.  The beeswax wasn't hard to find here, and I have plenty of spare fabric.  It was quick and easy.  It only required two things: beeswax (about an ounce of it made two) and fabric (I made two 11" squares.


So I grated the beeswax ...

Looks like Ramen, doesn't it?
 Spread the grated beeswax out on the piece of cloth on a baking sheet, on top of parchment.  Since the whole concept of this is to use less, I planned to reuse the parchment paper.  I ended up throwing it away because there was wax residue stuck to it. 

I put this in the oven on really low heat, and it only took a minute of two for the wax to melt.  I used a paintbrush to spread it out so it covered the whole square.  And hung them to cool.

Done, in about ten minutes total!  I used it to wrap a block of cheese.

 

 I also tried wrapping half a papaya in it. 


Verdict?  They worked really well.   They are water-resistant so even the papaya juice didn't get through. The fabric gets stiff in the fridge so it keeps its shape.  Take it out of the fridge and it becomes more pliable with the heat of your hands.  One of them ended up in my freezer, so we'll see how it holds up after it comes out.   They might even seal around a bowl, but I haven't tried that yet. I don't expect these to keep forever, but I could always throw it back in the oven to re-distribute the wax.  As for care, I use some liquid castile soap spray and pretty much just rinse it with water. 

It's fun to have cute and colorful things in my fridge.  It's also a fun and not expensive experiment.  I like the idea of them too, so I hope they work well for us!

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