October 07, 2011

Scotch Bonnet Pepper Jelly



Ingredients:
3/4 lb Scotch Bonnet peppers, stems and most seeds removed
2 cups apple cider vinegar, divided use
6 cups sugar
6 oz. liquid pectin (both pouches in the box)

Directions:
In a blender, puree peppers and half of the vinegar. Prep jars/lids. In a heavy bottomed pot bring the puree, remaining vinegar and sugar to a boil. Boil for 10 minutes. Add the pectin. Return to rolling boil. Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Ladle into jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

Yield: approx. 6 8-oz jars, 1 4-oz jar


Quick tip: I used my Vita-mix and it pretty much pulverized all of the seeds in the peppers. The few that remained, floated to the top of the jelly. I don't mind this but it you want an entirely seed-free jelly, run the pulp through a sieve before the boiling step.

Note: A great source for canning information is the Blue Book guide to preserving. I highly recommend it for learning how to can. Here is a bunch of other canning books and equipment I find useful.
My thoughts:
I don't know about you but my peppers really don't seem to ripen until pretty late in the season in any real numbers. This is a great recipe to use up a bounty.

Pepper jelly has that unique quality of being both instantly shockingly hot and sweet at the same time. Luckily, scotch bonnets have a bit of a fruity note to them so this jam isn't all flames. It is rich and complex tasting as well. I recommend a thin spread of it on a sandwich or as a glaze on meat. Anywhere really, you need sweet heat.