Daily Archives: October 21, 2006

AAARGH!! Prickly pear jelly woes.

Our prickly pear cactus fruit

The tops on my newly canned half-pints of prickly pear cactus jelly are popping as I type.  Residue of uncanned juice on the pot and utinsels are jelling up nicely — a good sign of what will happen inside the jars.  It tastes wonderful. 

However…  one of the delights of this jelly is its brilliant red-purple gem-like color.  Mine is not.  It is, as my dear husband called it, “root beer brown.”  I would call it more honey-colored.  Man.  What a bummer. 

The problem is that we harvested it last Friday, and I couldn’t process the fruit until Sunday…  I extracted the juice, freezing half of it.  The other half, I put into a stockpot, and started the process of canning.   But, I ran out of time and had to throw it in the fridge.  That happened one other time this week, and then again this morning.  All told, I think I brought the juice to a boil four times, not counting when it was boiling to extract the juice.  So, I think I just over-cooked it.

I am/was intending this jelly to be part of our Christmas presents this year — what with Martin being worship pastor at church, other friends from church, large extended family on both sides, various neighbors and other friends, I’ve historically made some sort of yummy to distribute to the masses.  This, however, won’t do for presents.  😦 

Well, if anyone reading this knows me IRL and wants a “freebie” jar of rootbeer-colored  honey-colored prickly pear cactus jelly, gimme a holler and you can have one.  I have 12 extra. 

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