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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Beautiful Plum Jelly

Just take a look at that beautiful sunshiny Plum Jelly!  I love the translucent plum color.  You wouldn't even have to eat this - just use it as decoration!  :o)  The flavor is fabulous too though, so it wouldn't last long as a decoration at our house... it would be slathered on toast and piled on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!

This batch of jelly is nostalgic.  Dave's Grandpa and Grandma were always so resourceful and frugal.  They rarely let things go to waste.  Their yard, years ago, had a huge Damson plum tree.   In 1994 there was a bumper crop of plums!  I remember picking quite a few and making jelly.  Grandpa couldn't bear to see that fruit fall and go to waste so he spent hours juicing those plums.  I don't know for sure how many gallons of juice he got, but I would guess between 10-15 gallons.  They put the juice in containers in the freezer.  A year later, Grandpa passed away.  He was in the hospital the same time our 5th child was born - in fact after delivery I walked down the hall (small hospital) to his room to talk and tell him about his new great-grandson.  He passed away a few days later.  Who knew plum juice could be nostalgic.  :)   

We inherited a freezer from Grandpa & Grandma.  It came with about 10 gallons of that plum juice.  I've used a little here and there to make jelly, but haven't needed more plum jelly for quite a while.  When we were cleaning out the freezer last week, I decided to thaw a container and see if it was still good enough to use.  It IS 16 years old now!  The jelly not only LOOKS beautiful, it tastes just like it was made from freshly juiced plums!  Carrying on in the tradition of our grandparents - we won't be wasting this juice - no matter it's age!  1994 must have been a good year!

I'll just leave you the link to the recipe.  It used to be in the package of pectin, but now you have to find it online.  I prefer MCP brand Pectin.  It is made by Sure-Jell now, but the method for freezer jams is different than Sure-Jell.  MCP is the only one I keep on hand.   It says on the website that it is available on the west coast.  I suppose if you're not lucky enough to live where there's MCP pectin, you'll enjoy using Sure-Jell. 

Just click on the link below for the recipe...

If you've never tried making jelly, it's one of the easiest things to learn to can and it cooks up quick.  If you find an abundance of fruit to juice, give it a try!

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