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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I open the canning jar?

Although households in France have been using this jar for over 100 years, the American consumer has often never seen this type of canning jar. Clearbrook Farms is one of the only companies, in the world, that has mastered the art of pulling a vacuum with this jar. This enables us to make our preserves without preservatives, delivering an all-natural product. 

1. To open the jar, lift the handle from it's closed position while leaving the clasp over the top of jar. 

2. As you raise the handle, in a semi-circular direction, it will push up on the clasp.

3. As you reach a point of resistance, push up on the handle. The handle and clasp will act as a fulcrum and break the vacuum.

What's the difference between a preserve and a fruit butter?

The Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act was published in 1940. To bear the name of a standardized food, like preserve or spread, a product may contain only those ingredients and components listed in the standard in the amount specified. 

The federal standards do not differentiate a preserve from a jam. To be called a preserve, there must be a minimum soluble solids (brix) content of 65%. This is the standard measurement of the sugar which is derived from first the fruit and second the added cane sugar. 

Clearbrook Farms finishes its preserves at 67% soluble solids, 2% greater than government standards of identity. We are very proud of our quality and consistency. To paraphrase the Federal Standards of Identity : Fruit Butters are smooth, semisolid foods each of which is made from a mixture of one or a mixture of fruit ingredients and one or a combination of sweeteners, spices, flavoring, acidifying agents, fruit juice, pectin and preservatives. The mixture of fruits shall contain not less than five parts by weight to each two parts by weight of sweetener. The soluble solids content is not less than 43%.

Fruit Butters are made by cooking fruit and sugar together until a smooth thick ìbutter-likeî consistency is achieved. Fruit Butters do not actually contain butter.

How do I remove the label from the canning jar?

We have found the easiest way is to use is to use mini-glass scraper (like the Allway Brand) available at most hardware stores. Be careful, this is a razor-blade! If there is any glue residue, try a solvent (like WD-40 or Glue Begone).

What is the shelf life of Clearbrook Farms Products?
How should I store them?

As a result of the vacuum created in our canning jars during production, (see "How do I open the canning jar?"), we like to say that our products will "last forever." With time, however, the brilliant color and flavor of our products will fade. 

To ensure customer satisfaction, we advise that our preserves, fruit butters and fruit tart be eaten within 18 months. And, for maximum flavor, our products should be served at room temperature! Most people store preserves in their refrigerator. In fact on our label, it suggests "keep refrigerated after opening." If you keep the preserves free of "foreign materials" (butter, bread, peanut butter, saliva, no double dipping!, etc.), then it does not need refrigeration. 

We recommend using a clean spoon when removing preserves from the jar. In our home, there are typically five open jars in the pantry. If you store the product in the refrigerator, take it out and allow it to warm to room temperature before serving. Because the Fruit Butters and Fruit Tart are lower in solids (not as much water is boiled off) they should be refrigerated after opening.Depending on their storage conditions, the tart shells will last for 12-18 months.  Please do not store in the refrigerator or freezer (even after the carton is opened)! The shells are crisp because they are low in moisture. If they are put in the refrigerator or freezer they will absorb moisture and become soft.

What can I do if my preserves crystallize?

The simple answer is nothing can reverse the crystallization process. 

This typically may occur, if the preserves are stored in a very cold refrigerator for a long time. If you see this crystallization start, scrape the crystals out and store the preserves in the pantry ( see storage suggestions )

Can diabetics eat Clearbrook Farms Products?

The easiest answer to this question is to always consult your physician. All our products contain carbohydrates. Our products are not sugar free.

Are our products Gluten Free?

All flavors of our Preserves, Fruit Butters and Fruit Tart Fillings are Gluten Free.

Are our products Kosher certified?

All of our products with the exception of the Bakehouse Tart Shells, are Kosher certified through the Orthodox Union (OU).