Use under-ripe quinces as the high pectin content will help the jelly set. If you are a little nervous about the jelly setting, have a couple of packets of Jamsetta on hand. Follow the instructions on the pack for no-fail results.
Photo: Marina Oliphant
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- 8 quinces, washed
- 2 large lemons, quartered
- 2 kg caster sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, split
Place whole quinces, lemon, sugar, vanilla bean and 3 1/2 litres of water in a large stockpot. Bring to the boil and simmer for 2 hours. Pour into a large jelly bag or colander lined with muslin, suspended over a large bowl and strain. Do not squeeze the bag or your jelly won't be clear.
Set aside the drained fruit for another use.*
Return the strained liquid to a clean saucepan, bring to the boil and boil rapidly for 1 hour, skimming the surface if necessary. Do not stir the jelly.
Place a few small saucers in the freezer to chill.
Test if jelly is at setting point by dropping a teaspoon of liquid onto a chilled saucer. Place saucer back in the freezer for 2 minutes. Remove and gently run your finger through the jelly. If it wrinkles and forms a skin, it is at setting point. If not, try again after 5 minutes. You will notice that your bubbling pot of jelly starts to thicken and the bubbles become thicker. This indicates that the setting point is close.
Once setting point is reached, remove pot from heat and wait for bubbles to subside.
Pour into sterilised jars and seal while hot. Refrigerate after opening.
Makes approximately 1 1/2 litres.
*Consider uses the quinces in this crumble recipe.