Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Sweet Cherry Jelly
I had tons of sweet cherries, and while I love them fresh, I had made myself sick on them already and there was no end in sight to the cherries. After some hunting I found a sweet cherry jelly (as opposed to the more abundant recipes for sour cherries) and decided to try it. Why jelly you might ask, as opposed to the less work of jam? Well I don’t like fruit chunks, that is right, I am an odd duck, but I just can’t get over the texture of chunks of fruit in my food. (As a note, this also means that I do not eat anything that involves cooked fruit – so no pies for me). Anyways, I wanted to be able to enjoy this lovely mix, so I opted for the jelly not the jam.
The recipe I found was on the kraft Canada site. I have made a couple modifications to their recipe and posted it below, but you can see the original here.
10 cups stemmed sweet cherries
1/2 cup water
3 1/2 cups sugar
1 box CERTO Pectin Crystals
1.Crush the cherries ( a potato masher works well here, but make sure you are wearing something that you don’t mind staining, the really juicy cherries shoot juice everywere!). Do this in small batches and remove the pits. Note: The original recipe says to put the pulp
2.Transfer the pulp of the cherries to a large saucepan and add the water. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally, over medium heat.
3.Once the mixture is boiling, reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4.Pour the mixture into a jelly bag (if you don’t have one, you can use layered cheesecloth) and let the juice drain out. Note: The original recipe says not to squeeze to the bag, but I will often do at least a gentle mixing of the contents to make sure I get all the juice out.
5.Measure exactly 3 ½ cups of juice (I used the original recipes 8 cups of cherries and was a little short, if you are you can always just start at step one and make a little more juice. The juice you have already made can sit for a while with no ill effects on your jelly).
6.Mix the juice and the pectin crystals in a large saucepan and bring to a full roiling boil on high heat. Once the mixture is boiling, stir in the sugar and bring it back to a full boil (ie, when you stir the mixture the boiling doesn’t stop) and boil for 1 minute. Stir constantly at this point.
7.Remove from heat and skim the foam from the top, you can take up to 5 minutes to do this, but I like to keep it at about 3. (note, I always keep the foam in a Tupperware, and then snack on it later, it is still really tasty!)
8.Pour into warm and sterilized jars (I usually do this by running them through the dishwasher or having them sit in boiling water for 5 minutes). Fill to ¼” of the rims and seal with 2 piece lids.
9.Let them sit at room temperature until set.