This section is from the book "The Table: How To Buy Food, How to Cook It, and How to Serve It", by Alessandro Filippini. Also available from Amazon: The Table: How To Buy Food, How To Cook It And How To Serve It.
To avoid the trouble of preparing them each time they are needed, it were better to clean many at a time, for they will keep in perfect condition for five or six months, if put away in a well-closed tin box. Procure ten pounds of currants or Sultana raisins, lay them on a table, and should they be damp, dredge a little flour over to prevent them adhering to the hands. Rub them thoroughly, then take a wire sieve, No. 3 (or as fine a one as will prevent them passing through), place the currants on it, and shake them well for two or three minutes, so that they be perfectly free from flour and stalks. Lay the sieve containing the currants in a large dish-pan, filling it to the level of the sieve with hot water, then, with a skimmer, stir them, so that they get washed thoroughly for at least five minutes. Lift up the sieve, and let them drain in the same for three minutes. Cover an iron oven-pan with a- sheet of brown paper, pour the currants on it, spreading them out evenly, and set it in a very slow oven for ten minutes; remove, and lay them aside in the warmest spot on the kitchen shelf, and leave them to dry thoroughly for at least two days. If in the country, the pan can be left out in the sun during the day. When dry, lay them on the table, and should any more foreign matter be found.among them, pick it out carefully with the fingers, and examine them well to see whether they be free of stones, stalks, stems, sand, etc. When finished, put them away in a closed tin box, and they will then be ready for use.