Posted by jennifer. | Posted in Garden, Healthy Eating, Life | Posted on 01-12-2012
Our acquaintance from the coffee shop has passed on another lovely bag of orange gold. I took four of the persimmons to try the Persimmon Jelly recipe in Stocking Up (a canning book). I was supposed to use “3-4 pounds, about 50 fruit” of the American persimmon. I might use more fruit next time (the full four pounds) because this could have used a little more persimmon flavor.
The way I did it was:
Place a large pot of water to boil with the jars in the jar holder (cage-like thing) to sterilize while I cooked the fruit. The lids went in a small pan of barely simmering water.
Diced about 4 ripe persimmons (mine are Fuyu, and they only had one seed among the lot) – next time I’ll use at least 5 or 6, depending on size. Place in pot with 1-2 cups water (I used 1, book calls for 2. Bring to gentle boil and stir, making sure fruit is covered so it can soften (if you’re using the soft varieties, just mash it and boil 10 minutes), after 5 minutes I started trying to mash it. I had to take it out and cut the fruit smaller so it could soften faster. I then tried to smash the pulp from this through a sieve with a wooden spoon – my old sieve came apart by the time I was done. I also learned that getting a mouli is definitely worth the time save if I’ll be making jams and jellies regularly (and they can be used for baby food).
Once 3 cups of pulp was extracted (I had to give up in the end and add about 1/3 cup filtered water, but I was close!), 3 Tbsp lemon juice (about the juice of one lemon) and a packet of pectin (the kind for reduced/sugar free canning) was mixed in, and the pulp went back into the pot on the stove, brought to a boil and 1/2 cup of honey added. The moment the sheet test was confirmed (probably 5-10 minutes after it actually happened… Directions said 1-2 minutes… “Did it run together?” I should trust that little voice that says “Looks okay” a bit more), I turned off the heat and brought up the jars. The recipe fills 3 half pint jars. I was supposed to only give them 1/4 inch of head space, but didn’t catch that until later. So, I ended up with an extra half jar – yum!
Last part is to cap them – lids on, bands finger-tight, submerge the jars into the hot water bath for 5 minutes. Allow to cool, check seal (press center of lid, it should be stuck sucked down), and label. Who knows how long this keeps because I expect it to be finished by Christmas!