Tuesday, October 5, 2010
This is me embracing AZ
I set aside a Saturday a few weeks ago and put up two dozen jars of prickly pear jelly. Why do they call it "putting it up," by the way?
I used this recipe from homegrown evolution.
I do have a few different pointers about how to harvest your prickly pear fruit. I called up a friend of mine who has been canning prickly pear jelly for over 30 years. Here are a few of her pointers: don't bother burning off the spines. just harvest your fruit (with big metal tongs, like the bbq grilling tool ones), rinse it off, and then stick it in the freezer overnight. Pull it out, let it thaw, and then mash it with a potato masher. Strain the pulp twice, once with an old (but clean of course) pillow case, and the second time with a strainer and cheese cloth. Then your juice is ready! Also, it can be used for more than jelly. You can also make syrup, use it with lemonade as a drink, or marinate meat with it.
I'm so glad I called her! Not only did her pointers help out a ton, but she also had a great anecdote about not washing the pillowcase with your underwear after you are done using the case to strain out the pulp and pricklies... I will let you imagine the rest... :)