Judy's hubby Ron and my brother Steve both love my Fireweed Jelly more than any other jelly or jam I send. I understand why....it takes a lot more more time and effort to make it than say, strawberry or raspberry or blueberry......first you have to pick the fireweed...then you have to separate the blossoms from the stems. Ha ha....you think you have 8 cups of blossoms only to go home and find you only have 1/2 of what you need and need to go out on another excursion to get more..then you have to wash and wash and wash the blooms...then a long and drawn out process is involved in making this beautiful purple PHANtasy.....hee hee I really treasure the memory of hunting these beautiful blossoms with my mom on the back of my 4-wheeler...right in our own neighborhood!
As with other lovely concoctions I create in my kitchen, I won't take credit for something I did not invent on my own. This recipe comes to you from "Grannie Annie's Cookin' at the Homestead" cookbook email her for her cookbook at email@example.com, or order it at $14.85 for the book, $3.80 for postage...make checks payable to Grannie Annie, Fireweed Herb Garden and Gifts, 202 North Forest Drive, Kenai, AK 99611.
Alaska Fireweed Jelly
8 cups fireweed blossoms (no stems)
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 1/2 cups water
2 packages Sure-Jell or other powdered pectin
5 cups sugar
Pick, wash, and measure fireweed blossoms. Add lemon juice and water and boil for 10 minutes, then strain through cheesecloth. Reheat and add pectin, and bring to boil. Add sugar and bring to a full boil (I found it necessary to use a wire whip to break up the sugar). Boil hard for just 1 minute (you can't stir it down). Pour into hot clean sterilized glass jars and seal (water bath 10 minutes). Makes a beautiful pink jelly.
So you don't have access to our weed....the Fireweed...find out what IS available and edible in your area....if you substitute your flower for the fireweed I'll trade you your jelly for mine. I'll even send you some fireweed seeds.
We are having grilled blue cheese mooseburgers for dinner....YAHOOOOOO!!! Served with our very own garden-grown lettuce and last year's canned dill pickles....the moose burgers.....I mix with a higher fat hamburger (moose is too lean to eat by itself). I mix in blue cheese crumbles and pineapple chunks...then freeze in my handy-dandy vacuum sealer...and whala!!! instant dinner for Jim and I....I grill two and he eats his traditional style with a bun and all the fixings..I eat just the meat and the lettuce, tomato and pickles...no bun....Tonight I am serving these up with some baked beans and fat free cottage cheese...Gotta watch that girly-figure! OK....did make a cheesecake topped with wild strawberries Jim found....but I DON'T EAT THAT!!!! he does though.............I am so glad I am not attracted to sweets....I would be in serious trouble if I was!