It is very hit and miss with me .Sometimes the set is perfect (never using pectin) and sometimes it stays liquid no matter how long I boil/reduce the liquid.
Is it possible that I am not boiling the skins/pips enough ?
Does boiling for a long time after the sugar has been added destroy the pectin?
Is it the high heat involved that causes this to happen?
I know I can just add pectin (or even just apple jelly) but I am frustrated at not having got my technique down pat after a good score of years doing it each year with my own fruit.
Some of the tips in this thread might be helpful - https://www.boards.ie/discussion/2058193170/making-jam
*Most people in Ireland will call it Jam rather than jelly
It is jelly I am making(without any pieces of fruit)
I was hoping there might be others in the same predicament as mine where they have made the jelly only to find it is much too liquid and wary that (as has happened in the past) any further boiling will just ruin the final product ,turning it into something more like a paste than a jelly.
Even when I had ,in other years bought bottled pectin and added it to my half finished liquid (far too good for throwing out-it can still be used for sauces) it was not entirely satisfactory and was a bit brutal as a procedure.
I think I might have to prepare small amounts at a time as they seem to work better for some unknown reason and any damage is limited if things still don't work.
"Most people in Ireland will call it Jam rather than jelly"
*except when they are actually talking about jelly!😉
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Learned something new today! I always thought they were the same. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction!
In this part of the world, fruit preserves are called jam.
Also in this part of the world, fruit preserves made from fruit juice (boiled, strained fruit) is called jelly - just like redcurrant jelly or apple jelly.
Because you people don't know this does not make those that do wrong.
I make apple jelly flavoured with blackberries or sloes. Always find it takes longer to get a set than books will advise. I just keep boiling and testing, usually an hour. Don't use bought pectin but a good mixture of apples; cookers, eaters and crabs.
Is that long boil before you strain off the skins etc or after you have added the sugar?
I find that boiling it with the sugar for too long doesn't do the job.It just gets thicker and thicker without setting any better.
I have tried a preliminary long boil (without the sugar ) and while it worked well I don't remember it being any better.
What I have taken to doing is doing a short boil and pouring off the liquid without straining.
This works very well sometimes but not always and I think the fruit has to be right to do this (not too ripe I suppose)
Since we have animals that love the dregs I give them this and perhaps I give them too much of the pectin for my purposes.
We bring all to the boil, long enough to make sure apples (cut in quarters etc) are breaking up but no longer. Then strain through cloth overnight. Then add sugar at approx rate of a 1 kg bag of sugar to 2 pints (excuses mixing measures). This we bring to a good rising boil, skimming off any froth. Test for set. Then into jars. Been doing this for years and get a good jelly set when cool - not too thick and not runny.
Apples have always worked extremely easy for me as they must be naturally full of pectin.Same with red currants.Never a problem.
But blackcurrants are a bit hit and miss.Sometimes they can be a bit ripe and sometimes ,perhaps I may be in too much if a hurry and not boil the skins long enough.
Then maybe try 50/50 blackcurrant/ apple? Or whatever proportion. The best we've tried are sloes, you only need maybe 5% sloe which gives a good rich colour and a slight touch of tartness to balance the sugar.
Yes,I have added a bit of apple in the past and the blackcurrant tolerates it very well as it is such a strong flavour.
Sloes sound interesting .A lot of the bushes in our area have died though and I would have to keep my eyes open later this year to see if I can find any more.
A friend makes slow gin ....