Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Cranberry Habenaro Jelly

Want to know my new lunch time obsession?
This jelly with a dollop of cream cheese or goat cheese with crackers or carrots. 
I might have eaten this everyday for lunch for a week. 
I'm addicted.

It is ridiculous on pork, I mean cah-razy good!

Dude, this jelly is the business! 
It has quite the kick, but that can totally be dialed back. 

I am about to make a second batch.
 Between the fact that I am already on my second jar and that I have either promised or given away 5 jars I'm down to 1 left in my pantry.

   I have variations dancing around in my head. Things like, Hibiscus Habenaro, Apricot Jalapeno and Strawberry Serrano. The possibilities are endless! I think I caught the canning bug. I'll be making loads of jams, jellies and preserves this spring/summer. PICKLES I want to make tons of pickles! I'll be putting the canning cookbook my Granny passed down to me and the preserving cookbook my in laws bought to good use this year. But for now I'll make that second batch of this babe!

Cranberry Habenaro Jelly
Makes 8 half pint jars
1 cup dried cranberries, finely chopped
1 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
4-5 habanero peppers, seeded and finely diced
(make sure you use gloves and wash your hands well after handling)
6 cups sugar
1 pouch liquid pectin (optional)

In a sauce pan combine cranberries and vinegar and let soak on the counter for about an hour. In the mean time process your jars. Wash/sterilize 8 half pint jars, lids and rings. Keep jars in hot (not boiling) water until ready to use. After an hour add in the onion, both peppers and sugar to the pan and place over high heat and bring to a slow boil and cook for 10-15 minutes, until it has reduced and thickened slightly. Remove the pan from heat and stir in pectin, if you choose to use it. This jelly should be thick but still pourable once it is set up. Use your discretion on whether you need it or not. Ladle to hot jam into the jars, I suggest using a funnel with a large spout, leave a 1/2 inch head space. Wipe the mouths, rings and lids clean. Screw on lids and process in a water bath for 10-15 minutes. Remove from water and let cool and check the seals. Any that do not seal should be refrigerated and used within a month.

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