Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Making Muscadine Jelly

Before you get the wrong idea, I'm not exactly known for my domestic skills.  However, when we bought our house many years ago, we were blessed to have a rather large muscadine vine right in our backyard.  It has grown progressively bigger and bigger each year.

Two years ago I had the bright idea to make muscadine jelly.  That's about as far as I got...thinking about it.  So, this year after watching the muscadine's once again turn from tiny green berries into large, plump dark purple grapes, and smelling them day after day from pretty much anywhere in my back yard, I decided to finally give it my best.  Saturday morning, Glen, the boys and I went out and picked as many of the ripened grapes as we could find.  For some reason Haley had no interest whatsoever in our muscadine project.

We ended up with about 3 1/2 pounds of muscadines.  There are still tons of them on the vine that aren't quite ripe yet. Here's our haul all nice and clean and ready to be turned into jelly.

Adam and Ryan wanted to do all the mashing themselves.  Ryan got to do more because Adam accidentally squished a grape too hard, spewing boiling hot grape juice on his finger.  Can I just say that my house smelled heavenly while these babies were cooking.  While the boys were stirring and mashing, I was sterilizing jars and lids.

Here's what you get after cooking and squishing for about 15 minutes or so.  The boys decided it looked like barf.  Nice...  Regardless, we strained the mucadines through a sieve to remove the skins and seeds, and ended up with a nice juice that looked and smelled similar to grape juice.

Next it was back on the stove for more cooking, adding the sugar and pectin, and finally, putting the finished jelly into jars.  We ended up with 8 jars total.  You should have seen the boys licking the pan and spoons.  YUMMY!!  Can you guess what we had for breakfast Sunday morning?

 If you'd like to try this yourself, I highly recommend it.  It wasn't all that difficult and the finished product is really good.  My jelly isn't as jelled as a commercial jelly, but very similar to all the other homemade jellies I've eaten.  Search the internet for recipes and you're sure to find plenty of inspiration.   Best of all, this jelly takes only 3 basic ingredients...the muscadine juice, sugar and pectin. 

1 comment:

  1. You're awesome. Any time I've made jelly I've just gone to the store and purchased juice because I'm just too dang lazy to make it out of fruit. I always love to see people canning!