Monday, November 1, 2010

Jalapeno Pepper Jelly

Recently, a friend of mine went up to Pennsylvania to visit some of her family. Her dad and step-mother have a farm up there and she brought back quite a few wonderful goodies from the farm. 2 bags of peppers, jalapenos and red peppers, were just a part of the bounty.

I had tried turning some of the jalapenos into baked poppers, without the breading. While the filling was wonderful, even boiling the peppers ahead of time made it impossible for me to eat them after the first one. It surprised me, because I've had milder jalapenos before and thought I could handle these.

But the hotness didn't stop me from trying another recipe: Jalapeno Pepper Jelly. I thought this would be a great thing to break out for Thanksgiving and Christmas as a snack when we have people over, because the green jelly strikes me as very festive.

--3 large green bell peppers, seeded, diced (this is where I used the mild red peppers)
--5-7 jalapeno peppers, seeded, diced
--1/3 cup water
--5 lbs. sugar
--3 cups cider vinegar (I didn't realize until afterward there's a difference between white distilled vinegar, which is what I bought, and cider vinegar. However, taste-wise, I really thought it still tasted good.)
--3 pkgs (3 oz.) Certo
--Few drops green food coloring, optional (I needed more than a few drops but be careful. If you decide to use the food coloring, it will bloom into green very quickly.)
--Rubber gloves (Trust me on this, if you've never prepared raw jalapenos.)
--8-10 hot sterilized canning jars

Using a scrupulously clean blender, process peppers with water until smooth. Note: Wear gloves when handling hot peppers and keep hands away from eyes.

In a large saucepan, combine pepper mixture, 1 5 lb. bag of granulated white sugar and 3 cups of vinegar. Stir together to dissolve sugar. Boil for 4 minutes, watching carefully (mixture boils over easily).

Remove from heat and stir in Certo and food coloring (if using). Stir well until all is combined.

Pour into hot sterilized jars. Seal and process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

I didn't actually do the boiling water bath for mine. Several years ago, I learned from my husband's grandma that canning is a huge hassle and not worth the time, effort and money to get the supplies. She said freezing is an easier way to preserve food. I still used the canning jars with the threaded rings and flat lids. After I poured my jelly into them, I laid the flat lids down on all of the jars (I had enough for 7 1/2 jars) and then screwed the threaded rings on them. Because the jelly was poured into room temperature jars, I allowed them to cool, undisturbed, on the counter overnight. By late the next morning, the jars had sealed themselves, pulling the the lids down flat like jars of food that have been sealed for safety in the grocery stores. I'm storing them all in the freezer. I did try a bit of jelly from the half jar though and it turned out very well!

No comments:

Post a Comment