Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Hot Peppa Jelly, Baby!







My neighbor gave me a huge pile of very hot banana peppers. I have never made pepper jelly or any jelly before, so I got busy on the internet and found a bunch of recipes. Had to buy some pectin and had no idea where to look for it in the store, because I'm not even sure what it is. It's magic jelly juice, I think.

First, I cut the tops of the peppers, de-seeded them and scraped out the membranes. I did the same with one sweet bell pepper. I did not wear rubber gloves when I did this, because I was like, "Rubber gloves are for pansy-asses!" A little while later, I absentmindedly rubbed an itch on my nose. My left nostril is still burning as if I rubbed some sort of flesh eating acid on it. So trust me here--wear the gloves.

Put the rough chopped peppers in the food processor with a cup and a half of cider vinegar and processed until the peppers were quite finely minced. Then I dumped that mess into a big sauce pan with 6 1/2 cups of sugar. I thought that seemed like a LOT of sugar, but apparently it's not. Especially since these peppers are not at all sweet, and something had to go in there to counteract the fire.

Then I just let it go to a boil, like a big cauldron, for about 4 minutes. I then added a pouch of Certa brand pectin. I had no idea if this was enough, because all the different recipes and directions I read had conflicting information. But it looked different when I added the stuff. It suddenly began to look like jam, which excited me to no end.

One more minute of boiling, then I ladled into sterile jars. Then I put the sealed jars in a big pot of boiling water for 10 minutes. Now I'm waiting to see if it actually sets up and gets thick. Again, not sure how long it's supposed to take. I have a good feeling about it, though. And I had a little taste of it before I put it in the jars and it was yummy!

P.S. I'm adding this later. After a couple of hours, the pepper jelly firmed up beautifully. It's the perfect consistency. I wish my whole life was like that.

13 comments:

Alex said...

lovey, next garlic jelly. and share or teach me.

Janine Serresseque said...

Do you know how to make garlic jelly, Alex? That sounds real good! I will research.

Joy W. said...

ok, i'm still on the pesto thing. i made a bunch and have leftover pesto, which i've been putting on everything. for lunch just now i had tomatoe's from my garden, corn and pesto. dear god it's good!!!!
i cannot thank you enough for posting your recipe, janiney!!

Janine Serresseque said...

Joy, you are so cute. You might like this; Make a personal sized pizza by taking a flour tortilla, spreading a layer of pesto, a sprinkle of cheese, scatter some veg on it and cook it in the oven. The tortilla gets crispy like a thin crust. Also, pesto can be frozen in an ice cube tray, then when the cubes are hard, you can pop them into a freezer bag and keep dollop sized portions of it to use for flavoring soups and sauces.

debra said...

mmmmm...garlic jelly. The hot pepper jelly looks yummy too!

When can I come over?

:-)

Janine Serresseque said...

Debra, git yer ass home. It's time we had some cocktails.

pnlkotula said...

For a quick party spread, if you set out a block of cream cheese and pour the pepper jelly on top (melt it a little) and serve with wheat thins, you're golden. Although I don't use HOT pepper jelly, but I imagine it's good, too, if you like it hot. Mmmmm...

sassafrasjunction said...

Lord that sounds good! My mom's VERY southern relatives all make their own jellies and preserves, et al, and I've always wanted to try it myself, so your post gives me some courage to try and do so...
:)

Alex said...

I am terrified of canning ect.
we always got it from the Pungo Inn.
maybe it's a witch thing!

Janine Serresseque said...

Alex, explain.

Alex said...

too many cryptic thoughts, sorry. I really do struggle with words.
Pungo, we always bought garlic jelly from the Pungo Inn (no longer around), in Pungo Va home of the Pungo Witch, a little southeast virginia lore. Plus the Inn is dear to me since that is where JohnG and I told my dad we were getting married. And garlic jelly is in my top ten foods.

and the thought of canning brings me to my knees though I throughly enjoy the fruits of other's labors.

Lauren L-C said...

I'm truly impressed! I usually just buy a jar at Padows ... Janine, I'm long overdue for a posting and it's been absolutely eons since I saw you last. How's tricks?

Janine Serresseque said...

Hey, La!
Good grief, I haven't posted in ages. Wanna post a recipe? You are surely one of my cooking idols, and entertaining idols. You taught me what a balsamic reduction is, and I now throw the phrase around like I've known it all my life.

I am looking forward to seeing the play you're in.

Lately, I have been learning low sodium cooking, which is really challenging because, well, salt makes stuff taste good. Ah, the joys of middle age.

Love you guys!