Remember all those concord grapes I picked a couple weeks ago?
Last Friday, I finally made some jelly from them. The recipe, it seems, was on the inside of the Sure Jell box. While I googled recipes, many mentioned fruit pectin, so I picked up a box at the store and discovered full jam and jelly making instructions inside. It was quite the messy process, so I couldn’t take pictures every step of the way, but I did the best that I could at the times that my hands weren’t covered in grape juice.
After picking all the grapes from the stems, the next step was to mash them. I figured scrunching them in the blender was the best method for that:
After they simmered came the most tedious part. I had to strain the juice out of the grape muck. Of this step there are no photos. I scooped the grape muck into cheese cloth, and let the juice run out. My hands, the counter, my shirt, my floor all ended up pretty grapey at this point. From about 3 pounds of grapes, I ended up with this much juice:
According to the Sure Jell box, this is where measuring had to become precise. I’ve forgotten the exact proportions now, but I think it was about 7 cups of sugar to 4 or 5 cups of juice, plus the box of Sure Jell, brought to a boil then simmered. Next I ladled the thick liquid into 4 pint sized jelly jars:
I added the lids and processed them in boiling water for 5 minutes. They were then set to cool on a towel for the next 24 hours.
Here’s the mess I made of my kitchen in the process:
The taste of the jelly is nice. It doesn’t taste hugely different from a jar of Welch’s, but it has a stronger, fresher, grapier taste to me. Worthwhile? Meh, I don’t know. But now that I know how to make jelly, I might be willing to try it with other fruits. It made for a tasty breakfast this morning, anyway.
The whole I time I was making this jelly, I had this crazy internet-ditty song playing in my head. If you click on this, I’m sure you will be stuck with it too! Don’t say I didn’t warn you! 😉