I love canning and preserving fruit,making pickles,jams and jellies and having a difficult choice to make during breakfast and snack times when I am confused between what to have with my breads or desserts!The Fall season – September to November is the time when we get lovely ripe fruits and fresh herbs to preserve and make lovely accompaniments from.
There are certain fruits which team up with certain spices and herbs and taste heavenly!Examples can be Mango and Cardamom,Apple and Cinnamon or Plums and Star Anise.The lovely juicy Pineapple is no exception and can be teamed up with fresh Mint to create a lovely Jelly which can be used on breads,toasts,bagels muffins and over desserts like Ice Creams or Puddings.The combination is heavenly and the mouth feels so awesome after having a spoofull of this delicious jelly!The recipe is by Gina Steer who excels in Jams and Preserves!
Many of you must be having this thought in mind – “Jellies are wobbly,gelatinous and soft desserts which melt in the mouth”!Jelly also refers to “a clear or translucent fruit spread or preserve” – Wikipedia!So this Pineapple and Mint Jelly is just that!
1.Use a ripe and big Pineapple for this recipe.Ripe Pineapples should be yellow in colour and have their wonderful characteristic aroma when smelt near the top stem.
2.I used a green colour for the Jelly.You can use Yellow colour or keep it plain!
3.For a more “herby” Jelly,Basil Leaves can be used which are snipped into small pieces.
4.Measurement of sugar – For every 2 1/2 cups of Juice take 250 gms of sugar – granulated/powdered.∗
5.The set test – If you have a Candy Thermometer,it should show 220 degrees.Or simply perform the plate test.Keep 2 small plates in the refrigerator once the Jelly starts boiling after adding sugar.After 15-20 minutes drop some liquid on the cool plate.If the liquid shrivels up like a “skin”,it is set!∗∗
6.Measure all ingredients for this recipe!
Preparation Time : 3 – 31/2 hours
Makes : Approximately 600 gms of Jelly
1 ripe Pineapple(around 800 gms)
6-7 sprigs of Mint
2 Apples – approximately 450 gms(Granny Smith,Fuji or whatever is available)
Sugar as per measurement∗
5 cups Water
2 tbsp finely chopped Mint Leaves
A few drops Green food Colour(optional)
Cut the Pineapple carefully using a sharp knife.Remove the top as well as the bottom parts where the stem and prickly leaves converge so that the Pineapple stands on a base.Start slicing from the border where the “black eyes” start and do not cut into the flesh.
Remove only the “eyes”.Now you have a nice and sweet half of Pineapple which would be further cut into chunks.Put the chunks into a pan.
Cut the Apples into chunks of the same size and add them to the pan.
Add the Mint sprigs and water and place on heat.
Allow the water to come to a boil and close the pan.Reduce to the lowest heat possible and simmer for 1 – 1 1/2 hours till the fruit is very soft but not mashed.
Cool for 15 minutes and strain through a cheesecloth or soup strainer till all the juice is extracted.Press the fruits on top with a potato masher gently to extract all the juice.
Pour the juice back into the pan and add sugar by measurement∗.Boil on medium – low heat for 25-30 minutes and perform the set test∗∗.
Once the set test is passed,take off heat and leave for 10-15 minutes.If you want to skim the top then do so now with a slotted spoon.Add the food colour and chopped Mint Leaves and pour through a clean and dry funnel into sterilised glass jars.
Lovely shots of the delicious Jelly..
Seal the lid and refrigerate after coming to room temperature.
If you do not have the canning ingredients then pour into clean glass jars and cover with a clean handkerchief or kitchen towel.Leave to come to room temperature then close tightly with the lid and refrigerate!
Enjoy your hard work and get used to complements as well!..:)