Monday, September 20, 2010

Canning Craze! Three unique recipes; Jalapeno Jelly-Pickle Relish-Salsa

This past few weeks I have spent many hours in the kitchen doing some yearly canning. My garden tomatoes have become ripe, so it was time to bottle several quarts of my homemade salsa. There is nothing better than a batch of salsa made from ripe tomatoes from your garden--yum! If you have never tried canning salsa, give it a try! It really comes together quickly if you have a food processor to help you with all of the chopping.

This year I have added a unique addition to my canning schedule...bottled sweet relish. That sounds like something my grandmother would make (probably because she does!). I was really unsure about this adventure in my kitchen, but my cute neighbor assured me that it would be easy to make and would be 100x's better than the relish you can buy in the store. She knows what a hot dog loving husband I have, and how much relish we go through on a regular basis. So, she brought me over a huge bag of cucumbers and told me to try her recipe.

The finished product...delightful! It was so good I had a hot dog for lunch the day I made it--that is weird for me! If you have cucumbers in your garden, or see some on sale at a store near you, give this recipe for homemade sweet relish a try. You will LOVE it!

Canned Sweet Pickle Relish

4 c. chopped cucumbers, about 4 medium--keep skins on
2 c. chopped onion
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 c. salt
3 1/2 c. sugar
1 3/4 c. apple cider vinegar with 1/4 c. water
1 t. turmeric
1 T. celery seed
1 T. mustard seed (I didn't have this so I just used dry mustard powder and it worked great)

Combine cucumbers, onions, green and red peppers in a large bowl; sprinkle with salt and cover with cold water. Let stand 2 hours. Drain thoroughly; press out excess liquid.

Combine sugar, vinegar and spices into a large saucepan. Heat to boiling. Add drained vegetables and simmer 10 minutes. Pack hot relish into half pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space. Process in a water bath 10 minutes in boiling water. Makes about 8 half pints.

Okay, now for my third and final canning adventure this week...Jalapeno Green Pepper Jelly. My friend brought me some of this last year for Christmas and it has since become a favorite appetizer or snack for our family. The sweet and spicy of the jelly and the coolness of the cream cheese is the perfect combination! This jelly is also great as a dip with shrimp or added to stir fry's. Bottle up a few batches of this Jalapeno Jelly for the next time you need to WOW your family or friends with a new snack.

Jalapeno Green (or Red) Pepper Jelly
2 cups chopped green bell pepper (or red bell peppers)
1/4 cup chopped jalapeno (if you like it more spicy, keep the ribs and seeds)
1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
6 cups sugar
2 packages pectin (liquid or powder)
4 drops green food coloring
6 (1/2-pint) canning jars with lids

Process bell pepper and hot pepper in a food processor until finely minced. Combine pepper mixture, vinegar, and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and add pectin and food coloring. Pour into sterilized jars and seal*. Place in a water bath at a rolling boil for 30 minutes.


Pandabonium said...

Fond memories of my mother's Jalapeno Green Pepper Jelly and cream cheese! So onolicious! (Hawaiian slang for yummy). Definitely will "wow" them.

Digital Scrapbooking Made Easy said...

Hey Shandra! I've been following your blog forever and never left a comment! I just wanted to say thanks for all your hard work and you're amazing! I LOVE you blog and site!

Jessica Christiansen

Kelly said...

I canned both the salsa and the relish this week. Great way to use up my tomatoes and cucumbers. This is the second year we have made the salsa and we love it! Thanks so much for the recipes.

firewife said...

I have a ? for the ja;epeno jelly do you get the red or green by using the red or green peppers?

Shandra said...

Yes, if you would like red jelly, use red peppers and if you would like green jelly, use green peppers. They both work just as well as the other. The red peppers are perhaps even a little more sweet than the green. Both are delicious!

Anonymous said...

just wanted to say how wonderful the jalapeno jelly I made for my neighbors at Christmas was. I used peaches and made a very sweet jam, but when it was time to bottle them, I chopped up some red and green jalapenos from my garden and stirred into the jam these little chunks. Each jar got about five or six of the little pieces and it served as a very pretty coloring, but also enough zip to the otherwise too sweet jam. Neighbors asked for it again this year!

Anonymous said...

Dear Shandra,

I know this note is really late but I wanted to let you know that I tried this recipe, it was the first time I canned anything, and it's turned out to be my husbands favorite relish recipe. I was "informed" that I'm not allowed to buy the brand I usually buy and I need to keep a supply of this at all times. (This from a man that was famous in our family for saying "how good could home canned items be"! Thanks for posting this. I hope to get some cucumbers this week to make more and then it's on to Strawberry Jam!

Take care & Thanks again!
Joyce Adams

Shandra said...

Oh good! I am glad you enjoyed this recipe too ;) Thanks so much Joyce for leaving a comment and sharing how you liked this recipe.

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