Wild Violet Jelly
We would bring them back to the house and make jelly from them and sometimes syrup.
I posted her recipe here and over the weekend I set out to pick violets. It seems my lawn right now is mostly clover and the only violets I could find were down on the back side of the woods where there is a good size patch of them. The bad part is that they are the tiniest, micro-sized violets I have ever seen. The acorns laying on the ground dwarfed them. I’m sure they are a good size for the wood fairies though.
I placed one I picked from the lawn next to the one growing on the side of the woods. Needless to say I only managed to find about 1 cup of the violets. This might be better later in the week when the ones in the lawn start to bloom. I will check.
To make violet jelly you will need about 2 cups of fresh, dry wild purple violets. Pick these in mid morning after they have had time to dry out from the dew overnight. I only had slightly over 1 cup of violets so I cut the quantities in the recipe is half.
It’s time to make an infusion, put them in a container you can seal tight and pour 2 cups of boiling water over them, or enough to cover them by about 1/2″. Give them a gentle shake to wet them all and set in the sun for about 4-6 hours. I left mine overnight.
You will see that the water will change a beautiful shade of violet.
When ready strain and save the infusion. Put the violets on your compost bin.
Place 2 cups of the infusion in a stainless steel pan. You might have to add a bit of fresh water to make 2 cups. Add 1/4 cup of strained, fresh lemon juice.
This is the fun part the infusion will change from this pretty violet to a bright fuchsia color. If you have kids you will want to show them this part.
Next add 4 cups of sugar to this. Heat and gently stir until it boils and the sugar is dissolved.
When it reaches a boil that you can’t stir down add your pectin (I used 1 packet of Certo) and follow the packet directions. (Each brand of pectin has different processing directions.)
When done pour into sterile jelly jars and seal.
The FDA will tell you now to water bath process all jelly and jams, and recommend water bath boiling for 5 minutes. I personally do not. To me this is unnecessary. There is enough sugar in this that it isn’t a high risk. Common sense will tell you when you are ready to eat the jelly. If it doesn’t “pop” when you open the jar for the first time, or you see mold…Throw it away, don’t eat it.
But for goodness sake don’t take my word on it, the new guide lines tell us to water process it. You use your own best judgement.
I am going to assume you already know how to make jelly. If not you can read about it here. In the future I will be posting step by step directions with pictures.
If you decide to make this let me know how you liked it. This is just perfect on fresh toasted bread. It has a delicate flower taste that is hard to describe.
When I was in San Francisco I stopped in a little gourmet shop to have a look around. They were selling 2 oz. yes two ounces for $6.50 a jar. The jars didn’t even have any pretty fabric decoration or stickers on them. WOW, I wonder if they would like a new supplier.