Green Pepper Jelly for SHF22

Sugar High Friday's extravaganza of sweetness takes an extra measure of creativity here at A Veggie Venture. Sweets and Vegetables, you see, aren't an everyday match. But the TIME-famous folks at Delicious Days hosting August's Sugar High Friday made it easy: gooey sticky sweet spreads in glass jars! Opening my favorite canning cookbook, the standard Ball Blue Book, I knew the pages would yield a vegetable jam. Yep, there 'twas: a jelly made from green peppers.

So I reviewed my Practical Home Canning Tips, dusted off the canning supplies in the basement, turned down the air conditioning ... and got to work!

THE TASTE TEST ... Green Pepper Jelly may be sweet but it's also astringent. The lick-the-spoon test suggested it might be better suited for savory treatments like stirring a spoonful into a sauce for fish or glazing grilled pork or chicken. But the bread-n-butter test cinched my approval: like with marmalade, the sweet and tart combination is terrific for everyday toast and good bread. Yum.

WHAT I LEARNED ...
  • Food coloring is a necessity. There may be perky navy blues and crisp navy whites but green pepper jelly, sans food color, comes out brownish army bluck.
  • The book says the same recipe works for red peppers, with, of course, red food coloring.
  • Liquid fruit pectin should not be substituted for the specified powdered fruit pectin. Luckily, I learned this BEFORE starting to cook.
  • August is a hard month to find canning supplies. Two stores were out of powdered pectin, one out of half-pint canning jars.
  • "Pop" is an oh-so-satisfying sound!
Thanks, Nicky and Oliver, for the jammy inspiration!

GREEN PEPPER JELLY
Print or bookmark Green Pepper Jelly
Hands-on time: 15 minutes Day One, 60 minutes Day Two (not all active)
Time to table: 24 hours
Yields 6 half pints

7 green peppers, washed, stems, ribs and seeds removed, in quarters
1 jalapeno, ditto
1 1/2 cups vinegar
1 1/2 cups apple juice (+ potential need for more)

1 package powdered pectin
1/2 teaspoon table salt
5 cups sugar
Green food coloring

DAY ONE In a food processor, puree half the peppers and jalapeno with half the vinegar. Transfer to a very large covered container. Puree the remaining peppers with the remaining vinegar. Transfer to the bowl. Stir in the apple juice. Refrigerate overnight.

DAY TWO [Set up the boiling water canner and a pot to sterilize the lids and bands. Run already clean jars through the dishwasher on the extra-hot cycle to get hot.]

Strain the peppers through a chinois / china cap / other strainer into a four-cup liquid measure. If you don't end up with four cups liquid, add more apple juice to make four cups.

Transfer four cups to a large pot. Sprinkle with pectin and salt, bring to a boil, stirring often. (I wish I'd used a non non-stick pan for this for it took too long on medium heat to get this to a boil. Next time I'll use stainless steel.) Once it boils, add the sugar. Return to a boil, stirring often if not constantly. Let boil hard for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add food coloring. One jar at a time, ladle through a funnel into hot, sterilized jars with 1/4 inch headspace. Wipe the lips. Add lids and bands and tighten. Process 5 minutes in boiling water canner.


(c) Copyright 2006 Kitchen Parade

10 comments:

My words to you are... I love you! For the post below!
I just did my first marmalade ever. And I decided I want to try it again, but I had so so so many question, of which you've answered most! Canning is my thing, definitely, I just have to find good jars... next thing I'll try, that I've wanted to try a while, is pickles... yummie, and perfect for those one week hells we girls go through (I always crave salty)...
so once again THANK YOU! for the post below :)

Just me again...
wondering, because I can't find jamjars anywhere in Sweden (atleast not online or at the usual bulk stores we've got), but I could find honeyjars... can I used honeyjars or are there a big difference between them? If you need to see what they look like, here's a picture: http://www.biredskapsfabriken.se/svensk/cgi-bin/produkter.pl?falt=5&varde=195%2D22&mall=mall_vara.html&tillbaka=falt%3D4%26varde%3D709%26sok%3D%26mall%3Dmall%5Flista%2Ehtml%26sida%3D1
Let me know :)
xxxx Lexi

Hi Lexi, The honey jars in the picture won't work. Look for something called "canning jars" (what that is in Swedish, I don't know but Anne's Food might). Canning jars are a combination of a glass jar, a round metal lid and a metal band that work together to safely seal the contents for unrefrigerated long-term storage. The underside of the lid has a special layer of thin rubber around the edge. When the lid is tightened with the band and the jar is treated with heat, the rubber seals the lid to the jar, preventing air and microorganisms from getting inside.

Hope this helps. Keep at it, with your tenacity, Lexi, I KNOW you'll figure this out!

PS I've been to Sweden a few times! In both winter and summer!!

I love love love pepper jelly! [I don't have the patience to make it homemade - I cheat and buy mine.]

Thanks for the reminder. It's now on my grocery list. YUM.

I'm really going nuts... because it doesn't appear that anyone are seeling the kind of canning jars you are using (that to me are pretty) here in sweden, not even wihtout motives... what we have however are these glassjars with a glass lid that are attached with metal hangers, and you put a rubber part under the lid. I just don't like them at all... and still they aren't sold everywhere... (i used them for both my marmalade and my chutney)
i'm starting to lose my spark for this when just the jars are a soooo hard to find...

Oh dear, Lexi, keep at it. The jars you describe may be perfect. I have some antique jars that work that way too though I won't use them for canning because antique jars aren't necessarily built to withstand heat from the hot water bath. But if yours are new, they're likely made to withstand heat. Do check with Anne, also with Ilva at Lucullian Delight. I'm SURE they'll be able to point you in the right direction, give you some good Svenska tips!

How unusual! This is super original! I have never had this before! Brilliant!

Thanks, Bea, from you that seems extra complimentary! And I'm loving the little bit of sweet-tart, especially since I'm in bread-baking binge too.

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