Thursday, September 13, 2012

Corn Cob Jelly

Please excuse the wild children and Cozy Coupe in the background.

File this under "Weird Things To Can" (perhaps along with Tomato Jam). Corn cob jelly sounds so, well, weird, right? How could that possibly taste good?

It does, I promise. In fact, it tastes remarkably like wildflower honey. I've heard others make that claim, but I didn't believe it until I tried it for myself. But kind of like Queen Anne's Lace Jelly, this isn't something I would necessarily want to add to my PB&J's. So after I made it I had to figure out how to use it. Turns out it tastes great on a cheese board, on fried green tomatoes, on hush puppies, and even on top of more corn (in the form of fritters). I'm sure it would be delicious on any other kind of pan-fried offering. I might even get brave and try it in place of honey in different sauce and dressing recipes. If you try to make it, let me know and tell me how you used it!

Oh, and my pal Jillian has a great how-to for freezing corn, in case you were interested (save those cobs, Jillian!).

Corn Cob Jelly
Makes 3 1/2 cups, or 3 1/2 half-pints

12 sweet corn cobs
4 1/2 cups water
3 1/2 cups sugar
1 packet liquid pectin

1. In a large pot, combine water and corn cobs. Cut the corn cobs in half (carefully!) if necessary. Cover and boil for 30 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.

2. Using cheesecloth and/or a fine mesh strainer, pour out the liquid and reserve it. Discard corn cobs (carve yourself a pipe, leave for squirrels and other critters, or simply compost). Rinse out the pot and add the "corn stock" back to it.

3. Place the pot over medium-high heat and add sugar. Bring to a boil and add pectin. Reduce heat to medium and continue to cook until the jelly is at preferred "set" stage (when it sheets off your wooden stirring spoon or congeals as soon as it hits a plate pulled from the freezer).

4. Carefully pour the hot jelly into desired vessel(s) (freezer jars, canning jars, or a dish for the refrigerator). Wipe rim(s) and cover. If you want shelf-stable jelly, process in a hot water-bath canner for time appropriate to your jars (5 minutes for quarter-pints, 7-10 minutes for half-pints, 15-20 minutes for pints). Jelly will last for 3-6 months in the fridge and up to a year in the freezer or pantry (if processed properly). Enjoy!

*Optional step: If you want your jelly to be more yellow, add a few drops of yellow food color to the corn stock before adding sugar and pectin.


Anonymous said...

I will assume this is a condiment, but what is it served with?

Anonymous said...

Oh, silly wabbit, corn cob jelly is used on buttermilk biscuits and butter.

"Butter my biscuits and call me honey," said she. :)