I’m blessed to have several friends who are experienced and enthusiastic canners. I have a pantry full of homemade jams, pickles and chutneys. Not only are these babies beautiful to behold, they’re little jars of anticipation. When I rifle through my pantry, I’m reminded of all the delicious things I’ll get to try. As much as I’ve always admired my canning friends and the goods they produce, I’ve never ventured into the world of canning myself. UNTIL NOW.
My friend Lila and I have started making canning dates– each time choosing what we’ll make, splitting the ingredients and getting together for an afternoon of canning. Our first endeavor was Moscato & vanilla bean jelly, a recipe from yerttography. Not only is it tasty (sweet and almost creamy thanks to those delicious vanilla beans), it’s really beautiful– it’s a rich amber color and there are tiny vanilla bits suspended inside.
Moscato & Vanilla Bean Jelly
(makes 9 half-pint jars)
- 7c Moscato wine
- 7c sugar
- 3c water
- 1 vanilla bean, halved
- 2 pkgs liquid pectin (we used powdered)
- the juice of one large lemon
What You’ll Do:
In a large, non-reactive pot, pour in the wine, the water, and the sugar. Stir well to dissolve the sugar. Scrape the vanilla seeds from the pod and drop them into the liquid. Put the pod halves in there, too. Reduce this mixture by at least 1/3 over medium-high heat, stirring often.
Begin to process your jars and lids.
Bring the wine mixture to a rolling boil, then add the lemon juice and pectin, stirring to combine well. When the temperature reaches 230-240F, test a small amount on a chilled plate. If it sets after a few minutes, turn the heat off and skim the surface. If it does not set to jell, continue cooking and test every five-ten minutes. Continue to scrape any scum or foam off the top. Remove the vanilla seed pods.
Fill your sterilized jars, leaving 3/4-1 inch of head room. Secure lids and rings and process in a rolling boil for no less than 15 minutes. After processing, let the jars rest on the counter top for at least 24 hours before moving them. Don’t open your jar of golden goodness for at least 48 hours.
For more recipes like this one, check out the Domesticity page.