Over the past few weeks I have been making jelly. Lots and Lots of jelly. Maybe more jelly than we can possibly use, but it is fairly easy to make and the only ingredients that I have had to purchase are sugar, pectin and lemon juice. More canning jars were necessary too, but only one box since there were loads to be found around here.
Did you notice that no fruits were bought for my jellies? That's because the focus ingredient was found on our land. The garden isn't quite in yet, but there is a harvest out there if you look for it. Dandelions (got plenty here!), Lilacs were in full bloom last week, violets are plentiful in the pasture and our ancient apple tree is in bloom as well. The old gal gave us maybe 8, at the most, apples last year. The blossoms are so pretty and thinking that there might be a use for them...instead of having thousands of pretty petals go to waste why not put them to use and make jelly???? You can use crabapple blossoms as well, if you have them, I dont so apple it was for me.
First you need to pick your blossoms...I made a double batch of "Apple Blossom Tea" so I picked 4 cups of petals. Make sure there are no stems or leaves in the container, from what information I found on the internet it can make the jelly bitter.
The apple blossoms then got packed into a quart sized canning jar. For every 2 cups of blossoms you use 2 cups of boiling water, pour the water over your petals to steep. I let it sit over night and then strain it. I have milk filters from filtering our goats milk so I used that. Anything that will strain out the petals and bits of plant stuff will work, maybe a coffee filter would work too???
Measure out 2 cups of your "Apple Blossom Tea"
1/4 cup lemon juice, I used bottled concentrate
4 cups sugar. Put these first 3 ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Make sure there is plenty of room. Once the mixture comes up to a rolling boil, you will be glad that you have that extra room.
Here we are at a rolling boil. Now is the time to add a 3oz pouch of liquid pectin. Once it reaches a rolling boil again, boil for once minute and then remove from heat.
I skimmed off the foam.
Then ladeled it into my clean and sterilized jars. Leave 1/4" headspace and then put into a water bath and process for 5 minutes.
TaDa!!! Enjoy on your homemade bread, pancakes, thumbprint cookies, etc...mmmmm
i can vouch for the bitterness..with my lilacs, i left them on their stems and there's a bitter undertone to the cordial i made (it's basically the same recipe to make cordial, minus the pectin - and then you use it as a soda concentrate and mix it with sparkling or still water) i will try another batch where i pick all those little purple flowers off!
do you do the same with the dandelions? just leave it down to the yellow bits?
Yes, same for the dandelions, just leave the yellow bits. I had some of the white in there too and I dont think that it affected the flavor any. The dandelions were a huge pain, although the jelly does taste really good!
I feel so stupid. All this time you have been going on about making 'jelly' I thought you were talking about what I guess you would call 'jello!' Opps.
You've been making jam! Which makes much more sense!
No need to feel stupid....its just a word thing. I had to look and see that in the UK jelly (here in the states) is called jam. Im assuming that what we call jello here in the US is jelly in UK (does that wording make sense?) :)
I just did the same thing this spring with wild violets. I plan on doing it with rose petals in the next month.
I like liquid pectin best of all and I can't find it here..only the dry powdered which sometimes works sometimes not...(for me anyway)
Thank you for a wonderful tutorial and a great idea!
Never knew you could make jelly/jam out of apple blossoms ... guess I will have to try that out too!
Great post. I am right into making my own jelly. http://caroleschatter.blogspot.co.nz/2011/11/making-jam.html
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