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by Lauren at Modern Self-Reliance
If you have viewed the "Garden" section of Pinterest you will have no doubt come across someone touting the great "honey" like taste of dandelion jelly. I, like a few others, actually really like dandelions. I do not consider them a weed, I think they are a joyful yellow flower that dots the landscape of green lawns and are a sign of spring! So when I heard I could make jelly from dandelion tea I was pumped.
I went out to my apartment complex and found the jackpot of dandelions on the side of an embankment. In 45 minutes I collected a quart of flowers and joyfully skipped back to my apartment like a young schoolgirl (just kidding, but it is something I might do). With my flowers in hand, I spend about 45 minutes removing the stems. I steeped the yellow petals in water overnight. This doesn't smell too great so I was a little nervous about my jelly the next day.
After work, I came home, bought pectin and was ready to thicken that dandelion tea into dandelion jelly! I am thinking this will make a great, unique, homemade, Christmas gift. I can see already, all those tiny 1/2 cup mason jars filled with yellow sunshine jelly! Besides, all the Pinterest posts rave about how they kids love it, and how they have to find it from family.
As I had arbitrarily collected the flowers, and bought 2 boxes of pectin I thought why not make a big o' batch of it. If I have to fill my water bath canner, I might as well make a big batch. So I am doubling the recipe. In go my 6 cups of dandelion tea,then the two boxes of pectin and lemon juice. I bring to a boil and look back at my recipe,4.5 cups of sugar. Ok, double that, 9 cups of sugar! Holy moley! 9 cups of sugar! Oh, ok. I know there is a lot of sugar in jam....I'll add almost 3 lbs of sugar...
My jelly thickens up nicely and I dare a taste test. I pull out a small amount on a spoon and wait for it too cool. This is the moment! The moment I taste dandelion, sunshine, kinda like honey, jelly. And...it's sugar water. I mean, it kinda tastes like honey because honey kinda tastes like sugar. I do taste the dandelion as it's not exactly like a spoonful of sugar. I see why kids love it! Mom just handed them a tablespoon of dissolved sugar!
I processed for 10 minutes in my water bath canner. If you want to try canning check out my article on how to get started ----- Simple Guide to Water Bath Canning -----
Results: Dandelion Jelly
Well, I will never make this again. I will just go buy honey (or learn to keep bees). And those great plans for dandelion jelly Christmas presents? Family: I'll save you the diabetes and come up with something else.
I have included the recipe so you can critique it and explain how your recipe is better than this one, and how your jelly doesn't taste like sugar-water. I did see one recipe that called for an orange instead of pectin, and I would use this recipe if i was to try it again. Maybe the orange will up the flavor. As for now, what do I do with 5 pints of sugar-water jelly?
I don't claim to have made up this recipe, so check out the original here -----Simply Canning -----
- 3 Cups dandelion tea
- 4 1/2 Cups sugar
- 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 box powdered pectin
Add dandelion tea, lemon juice, 1 box of pectin into a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add your sugar and bring back to a boil. Continue boiling 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and fill jars.
- Add dandelion tea, lemon juice, 1 box of pectin into a large saucepan.
- Bring to a boil.
- Add your sugar and bring back to a boil.
- Continue boiling 1-2 minutes.
- Remove from heat and fill jars.
- Leave 1/4 inch headspace and process 1/2 pint and pints for 10 minutes in a water bath canner.
How did your dandelion jelly turn out? Better than mine? What do I do with 5 pints of sugar-water? Really, I want to know. Thanks for reading!
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