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Old 06-13-2002, 02:50 PM   #1
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It's Official #991


World of Pain ... Looks like a great time!
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Old 06-13-2002, 03:01 PM   #2
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Old 06-13-2002, 05:07 PM   #3
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Cactus Jelly anyone?



Jalea De Cacto (Cactus Jelly)
This is the best recipe that I have been able to find for cactus jelly / jam. However, it does not appear to be wholly satisfactory and some notes on possible improvements are appended.


Yield: 6 half-pints
Processing Time: 5 minutes
Temperature: High, Medium-high


Prickly pears*
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice**
6 ounces liquid fruit pectin***
Boiling water
Cheesecloth

1. Place prickly pears in a large saucepan or kettle. Cover prickly pears with boiling water, allow to stand for 2-3 minutes, and pour off water. (This aids in softening stickers of prickly pears.)
2. Peel prickly pears, cut into pieces, and place in a medium-sized saucepan. Cover prickly pears with water and boil at high heat for 5 minutes.
3. Pour boiled mixture through cheesecloth. Drain as much juice as possible and discard seeds.
4. Measure juice. Combine 3 cups of cactus juice, sugar, and lemon juice in a large saucepan or kettle.
5. Bring mixture to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to medium-high, add liquid pectin, and cook mixture for 8-12 minutes, or until the mixture begins to thicken. Skim off any foam that may have formed.
6. Pour mixture into hot, sterilized, half-pint canning jars and seal according to manufacturer's directions.
7. Process jars immersed in a Boiling Water Bath for five minutes to seal the lids. Test seal when cooled.****

Notes

* Prickly pears are fruit from the prickly pear cactus (Opuntia sp.) and may range in color from yellow-green to deep purple-red and in colour in size from that of an apricot to 6-inches long. For this reason, there is no accurate way of judging how many pears it may take to obtain a given amount.

**The acidity of the lemon juice is needed to promote setting of the pectin which combines with the sugar to set when cold.

***Liquid pectin is added because, presumably cactus fruit does not contain sufficient pectin to set. Even so, cactus jelly made in this way may "jell" soon after processing or can take as long as 2 to 3 weeks. Clearly native American people making cactus jam did not traditionally have access to liquid pectin and probably sufficient pectin was obtained either by stewing the peel of the fruit which in this recipe is discarded, for a longer time with the fruit pulp before straining , or from another type of fruit containing pectin . A modern equivalent could be to use green cooking apples, and as a starting point I suggest about an equal weight of cooking apples to the weight of cactus fruit.

To test for pectin, put 1 teaspoon of juice into a small glass, allow to cool and add 3 teaspoons of methylated spirit. Shake gently and leave for 1 minute. A jelly like lump indicates that plenty of pectin is present. Lots of small lumps indicate that little pectin is present and that the jelly is unlikely to set unless more pectin or another high pectin fruit is added.

****This step should not really be necessary as a well-made jam / jelly should keep well for months without further sterilisation

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Old 06-13-2002, 05:08 PM   #4
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Freak.
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Old 06-13-2002, 05:18 PM   #5
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Look, it's Chinese Water Torture.
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Old 06-13-2002, 05:21 PM   #6
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LOL ok that was funny.
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Old 06-14-2002, 03:43 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by zonelistener



Chinese Water Torture.
That's actually very, very classic. Kudos to you man, for that was very very classic, as i may have already mentioned.
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