One good thing about semi-public whining is it forces you to do something or look silly. After all, I’m the one that preaches about CSA subscriptions making us try new things and eat a wider variety of produce. Put up or shut up, right?
Since I was all pathetic about muscadines in my last post, I made some muscadine jelly Saturday. It wasn’t that scary. I went with the guidelines Jenna suggested: “Juice the muscadines. Use Pomona’s Pectin and a little honey and make the BEST muscadine jelly EVER.”
I started with a pint of green muscadines.
First, they got crushed in the blender.
Then they cooked on the stove for about 10 minutes.
At this point, I was entranced by the aroma. It was winy and earthy and very interesting.
I strained the muscadines, reheated the juice, and added some pectin and honey – roughly 1 tsp of pectin and 2 tsp of honey. (I was too skeptical to measure carefully.) Then I brought it to a boil and added a little more honey.
This stuff never set. But I was still excited.
It would make a nice sauce for pork or duck; I think it would overwhelm chicken. Maybe chicken thighs would work.
Not having any of these around, I considered making muscadine sauce corn along the lines of caramel corn. But in the meantime, I was intrigued enough to start on the other pint of muscadines.
These dark ones didn’t smell nearly as good. They were a week older, but the aroma was just so different that I don’t think it was age. These guys smelled sticky sweet with no complexity.
I followed through with the rest of the process, and this batch of jelly set up just fine. On a whim, I added the green sauce back to the pan, added more pectin, and reheated it. The result is a decent jelly. (To be fair, I’ve never really liked grape jelly that much. I am a peanut butter and honey kid.)
I haven’t had it on toast yet, but I did use it to make muscadine jelly vinaigrette for an arugula salad.
I waited until after supper to tell Chris what the dressing was. He couldn’t believe it!
I kind of wish I had done the popcorn thing so I could have experienced the green sauce by itself. Hopefully, I’ll get some light muscadines again and have another chance.
Oh dear, did I just ask for more muscadines?