Okay, so it's really jelly and me. But it so easily could be jelly and you! I want to show you how simple it is to make a batch of jelly. The hardest part is getting the juice. You can do that on your own by juicing your own fruit or you can buy 100% fruit juice from the store. Jams are even easier because you can use frozen fruit if you don't have fresh.
Today we are making jelly. Apple jelly. Remember this, trip to the apple orchard? Well, the apple were so small that they were very hard to peel. You know what they say, if you can't peel 'em, juice 'em! Hahahaah...no? Okay, well, we will move on.
I used a steam juicer to get all of the goodness out of the apples, then I threw the remains to the chickens. They were not appreciative of the sacrifice. Dumb things.
After I had that liquid gold! I decided to do what any busy mother would do. I stored it in the fridge until I could find time to make some jelly.
The time came today! Hooray! I had my waterbath canner on the stove for a week. It was calling to me. So I decided to do it. Jelly used to be a big process for me. Now it's something I can do, juice to jelly, in less than an hour. And that's two batches! If you can get a system going, it makes it easier. Here is my system.
|While I am waiting for the second boil, I set a timer for one minute.|
|Fill the hot jars with jelly. Leave a 1/4 of an inch of headspace.|
|I keep a small pan of water almost at a boil. Then I can steralize and heat my lids before they go on the jars.|
|Wipe your rims clean. (I use a wet paper towel or a clean rag.) Then place the lid on the jar and apply your rings. Do not over-tighten.|
|After the time is up, I let the jars cool for a few minutes on the canner rack.|
|Then I pull them out to cool on the counter and listen for the ping of victory! ( that means your jars are sealed!) Remember to tighten your lids again after they have been processed so that you get a good seal.|
I really hope some of you get inspired to try this. It's easy! You can do it! Homemade jelly is just one of those things that can't be duplicated in the the store. Plus, they make great gifts. We gave jalapeno jelly, a block of cream cheese and a box of Wheat Thins as teacher gifts this week. Last year I was able to give grape jelly to several of the school staff at the end of the year. It's a fun thing to give and it makes you look like you are a master in the kitchen even if all you can do is boil water! Let me know if you give it a try!