I am an avid fan of gardening and canning! It’s my favorite time of the year, and with spring here and things blooming I have been itching to can something. As you may know, we are not supposed to plant our gardens until after Mother’s Day in the Grand Valley so what was I to do?
We have a bunch of Lilac Bushes growing in our yard and they smell SO good, so I did a little research and alas, I found my next project! Lilac Jelly!
Lilac Jelly – As Adapted by www.commonsensehome.com
What you’ll need:
2 Cups Lilac Blossoms, packed (no stems or leaves)
2 1/2 Cups Boiling Water
1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
1/2 teaspoon Butter
4 Cups Sugar
1 Box Powedered Pectin (1.75 oz)
Wash all the flowers. Remove the stems and leaves, place the blossoms in a heat resistant container (I used a Quart sized mason jar). Bring 4 Cups or so to a boil. Pour 2 1/2-3 Cups boiling water over the blossoms. Seal the container or jar and let steep for at least 8 hours. I did mine for a little longer as I got started in the afternoon, so I put them in the fridge overnight. I wouldn’t let them go too long though as they will begin to rot, so definitely no more than 24 hours and that may be pushing it.
When ready to can, sterilize ten 4-ounce jars, keep hot. Heat lids and rings in hot water, keep warm but not boiling. Fill water bath canner and bring to boil.
Strain the flowers out of the water. Squeeze dry. You should have 2 1/4 cup infused water. Add more water if needed.
Place the flower infusion, lemon juice, butter and pectin in a large heavy bottom pot. Bring to a rolling boil. Add sugar all at once, return to boil. Boil for one minute, stirring constantly.
You want to make sure the sugar doesn’t clump. Skim foam if needed. (The butter will help to reduce foaming.) Remove from heat.
Ladle jam into sterilized jars leaving 1/4″ head-space. Wipe rims clean and screw on the lids. Process for 15 minutes in water bath canner (if you live in Grand Junction, CO…if not, add 1 minute per 1000 ft in elevation over 5000). Remove jars from canner and allow to rest until cool.
Now you can wrap them in tulle, burlap, lace, or get a custom made tag for them to make them extra special!
I suggest having your bridal party come over and help…maybe make it part of your Bridal Shower or a way to kick off your Bachelorette Party!!