Karen Solomon http://ksolomon.com/
Author of Can It, Bottle It, Smoke It: And Other Kitchen Projects, bakes cakes in canning jars that are great for gifts or picnics.
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Canning jars are built to withstand a tremendous amount of heat. In addition to being boiled for canning jams and pickles, they can also be baked in the oven and I like to use them to make adorable portable cakes in a jar. Start with two and one half cups of fresh seasonal fruit. Put those into four, half pint, canning jars. Combine one half cup of flour, one half cup of sugar and one half teaspoon salt. Whisk it together with a fork and pour it on the fruit and then top with butter. Once your jars are filled, move them to a square baking dish. Fill the inside of the baking dish with some dried beans to keep the jars from sliding around. Bake it at 350 for one hour. After baking, let the jars cool completely. I like to put a little whip cream on top and if you like you can keep them in the fridge for up to a week. They make a great gift and they are awesome for a picnic.