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Melba's swap shop: Not all jar gifts are edible

Melba's swap shop: Dec. 5, 2012
Modified: December 4, 2012 at 5:03 pm •  Published: December 5, 2012
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1 1/2 teaspoons allspice

1 1/2 cups chopped golden raisins

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

3 cups sugar

1 cup vegetable oil

4 eggs

2 cups cooked, mashed sweet potatoes (can use canned)

2/3 cup water

• Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, and allspice. Stir in raisins and pecans.

In large bowl of electric mixer, blend sugar, oil, eggs. Beat well and add sweet potatoes and water. Add dry ingredients and mix on low speed until blended.

• Pour 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon batter into each of the prepared jars. Wipe off any batter that might be on the edge of the jar. Place jars on cookie sheet and bake 45 to 55 minutes. Test with long cake tester for doneness.

• When done, remove jars from oven at once, one at a time and seal. You will need padded potholder gloves to handle the hot jars while you put on the lids. If bread has risen above jar's edge, just cut off the excess, wipe edge of jar clean and seal with the scalded lid and ring. Let jars sit until they seal. You'll hear the pop. Turn upside down and cool.

• Bread will come loose from sides and bottom. The shelf life is up to a year, but the jars never last that long. Everyone is so impressed with the bread in the jar, they usually eat it pretty quickly.

• I use pinking shears and cut circles out of Christmas material and put it on the flat and screw the lid on. Can also put the material on after the lid is screwed on and tie it with a ribbon.

— CAROLINE MEDLINGER, Oklahoma City

DEAR MELBA: Suggest to readers that when they get out their Christmas decorations, they might find some of their taper candles have developed curves. Don't just toss them. They should lay the candles down horizontally, and use their hair dryer to warm them while gently rolling them until they are straight.

— DON KILLIAN JR., Oklahoma City

If you have a problem other readers might help solve or an idea you'd like to share, write to Melba's Swap Shop, Box 25125, Oklahoma City, OK 73125. Please include your name and address.