Watermelon & Lemongrass Jelly

Watermelons are the essence of summer, and the only people who seem to dislike them are usually turned-off by the watery, grainy texture. Putting them up in a jar is a great way to circumvent the texture and still get the great and refreshing watermelon taste.

Our neighbors at the New Amsterdam Market are a lovely family with a farm in New Jersey. Z Food Farm is run by the young and industrious David Zaback, and his parents help him out, working alongside him at the markets in NYC and Philadelphia. They're the nicest folks, and generously ply us with GORGEOUS and delicious certified organic veggies at each market.

Yesterday they gave us a ginormous 27 lb watermelon to use for jelly. They also had some amazing lemongrass that will go great with the melon for a super refreshing jelly.

Watermelon & Lemongrass Jelly Recipe

4C mashed fruit 2C sugar 2t calcium water (Pomona’s Pectin) 2t pectin (Pomona’s Pectin) 3tbl lemon juice 3 stalks lemongrass, smashed & bruised (use a meat mallet or the back of a knife) and tied in a knot pinch of salt

Wash and rinse jars; bring to a boil and boil covered for 10 minutes to sanitize. Let stand in hot water. Bring lids and rings to boil; turn down heat; let stand in hot water.

Clean and prepare fruit. Measure fruit into a stainless steal or copper pot (DO NOT use aluminum). Add lemongrass stalks tied in a knot, pinch of salt and proper amount of calcium water from jar into pan; stir well.

Measure remaining 1 cup sugar into separate bowl and thoroughly mix proper amount of pectin powder sugar. Bring fruit to boil. Skim foam off the top and discard. Add your mixed pectin sugar and stir vigorously 1-2 min. while cooking to dissolve pectin. Return to boil and remove from heat. Skim off all foam that has formed at the top.

Fill jars to 1/4″ of top. Wipe rims clean. Screw on 2-piece lids. Put filled jars in boiling water to cover. Boil 10 min. (add 1 min. more for every 1,000 ft. above sea level). Remove from water. Let jars cool (this may take up to 12 hours), then check seals –lids should be sucked down.

Jam will last two to four months once open and refrigerated. Unopened, it will last up to a year on the shelf.

Note: The jam will jell completely and reach it’s proper “jam” texture when thoroughly cool — this might take 8 to 10 hours at room temperature.