Monday, April 28, 2014

Wild Violet Jelly

Did you know you could make jelly from wild violets,  the pretty little purple "weeds" that grow in your yard every spring?  You can!  And let me tell you, it's good!  It has a very unique taste that is hard to describe.  It doesn't have a floral taste like you might think.

Wild violets also have numerous health benefits! They are high in vitamins A, C, bioflavonoids, calcium, and magnesium.  The leaves can be used for skin rashes, sore and swollen joints, eczema, digestive problems, bruises, made into a cough syrup, used as a laxative, sore throats, arthritis, and they are a natural diuretic with cleansing properties!  You can read more about that HERE. I'm going to post an old recipe from my great grandmother on how to make a salve from the leaves sometime later next week, so be sure to check back!

In addition to the health benefits of wild violets, you can also use the flowers to be visually appealing in different food dishes.  Toss a few flowers into a green leafy salad with a balsamic vinaigrette dressing for a pop of color.  You can also put the flowers in ice cube trays, fill with water, and freeze to have ice cubes with little violets inside every cube.  Or, fill the trays with white wine and freeze to enjoy in a glass of wine!  Put a few of the flowers on top of a cake to add a touch of elegance.  The possibilities are just endless!!

To make the jelly, you only use the purple flowers.  Look how pretty they all look in a bowl!

Violet Jelly
3 cups violet flowers
3 cups water
approx 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
4 cups sugar
1 box pectin
6 half pint jars

1. Collect and rinse violet flowers
2. Bring water to a boil and add violets.
3. Allow violets to steep overnight in water.
4. Strain liquid through a sieve, discard flowers.  It will be a blueish liquid like this:
5. Add enough apple cider to bring the liquid back up to 3 cups.  It will turn from the blueish color to a pretty purple color:
6. In a medium sized pot, add liquid and stir in pectin
7. Bring the liquid to a boil.
8. Add the sugar.
9. Return to a full boil and boil for 2 minutes.  Make sure to continuously be stirring to prevent scorching.
10. Ladle hot jelly into half pint jars.
11. Process in a water canner for 10 minutes.
12. Allow jelly to sit so it will set up, do not move or disturb.
Yield 6 half pint jars

1 comment:

Janet, said...

I have heard of making jelly from violets, but never have. Sounds interesting! I am curious as to what it tastes like. I have made corn cob jelly before (and posted about it on my blog) and it is really pretty and good. And you use cobs after you have scraped the corn off of it. So it is really thrifty to make. Thanks for this recipe. I may give it a try next year.