Aug
02

Win a Jar of Prickly Pear Jelly

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Let’s do something different this week!  Do you want to win a jar of prickly pear jelly?  Here is your chance.

Share this post with a friend and have them sign up to receive our weekly blog post and both of your names will be entered to win an 8 oz. jar of my (freshly prepared) jelly.  I will ship the jar to the lucky winner.  I must have an email address, so if you win I can reach you to get a shipping address.  Read on to hear the story of our prickly pear adventure.

Prickly-pear-tree

We have a huge 10′ Prickly Pear tree. It was loaded with prickly pears called “tunas”.  There was plenty for us and the birds. The large paddles are call nopales.  There has been lots of research conducted about the medicinal use of prickly pear plants.  Click here to read more about the uses of the prickly pear.

This is the process that led to the final reward, the beautiful “pinkberry” color of prickly pear jelly!

We picked the fruit very carefully with tongs and leather gloves. Everything was okay until Paul took off his gloves and accidentally rubbed his head not knowing the “glochids”, small hairlike prickles, were on his hands. Sooo- about one hour later after I picked these nasty spines out, I had them in my hands. Later I was told to use masking tape and pull them out. This info came a little too late. 🙁 After reading all kinds of techniques for removing the juice we settled on rinsing them, placed them in freezer bags and freeze until ready to use. About two weeks later we removed the fruit from our “limited” freezer space and let thaw. The juice and pulp squeezed right out.  It took about 35-40 tunas to make six cups of juice.pricklypear-juice-lowsugar-recipeWear leather gloves even though the prickles were gone after the big freeze. Strain fruit in a fine mesh strainer (didn’t have cheesecloth) to remove the seedy pulp. The juice is such a pretty “pinkberry”color. (I just coined that color name :0) There is very little flavor in the juice, sort of a cross between watermelon and a peach.

We tried a low sugar canning recipe and it works great!  The jelly is wonderful, sweet but not too sweet.  The recipe still has sugar but 50% less than regular jelly  Here is the recipes we used from Root Simple.  The jelly was processed in our make-shift canning pot to seal the lids.  I love hearing the “pop” as the jelly cools and lids seal tight.pricklypear-jelly-processing-sealing

Our six 8 oz jars of jelly are shown with the pears or “tunas” of our tree.  Not all pears are peach/yellow.  There is a smaller variety next store that has ruby pink tunas.  I think we may try that variety next time.   Although, I am thinking we still can harvest enough for a second batch from our tree. if the birds haven’t beat us to it.
pricklypear-jelly-tunas-lowsugar

Even though this cactus is extremely prevalent in the Southwest, our North Carolina friends can also find prickly pears.  We had them growing at the end of our driveway at the lake. I was never brave enough to try them until now.

Lesson learned-be armed to fight the “pricklies” but it is well worth it!

Who wants to try my jelly?

Reply below, share this link with a friend, have them reply and you both have a chance to win an 8 oz jar of my “pinkberry” prickly pear jelly.   Good luck!

Mary

Mary Sherwood Lifestyles

If you have trouble replying below just send me an email at mary@marysherwood.com  Thanks for replying!

 

PS:  I saved two cups of juice to make the prickly pear cheesecake I mentioned last week.  We’ll see how that turns out!

 

 

Comments

  1. Mary says:

    Ouch! Your friend certainly deserves to win!

  2. Mary says:

    It is pretty easy once the fruit is frozen. It is so tasty! Share with a friend and take a chance of winning a jar!

  3. Nancy Eckhoff says:

    Love your blog! Jelly is so pretty. Hey, sharing with an Alabama friend that visited me and fell into a cactus. YEP – picked cactus out of her legs (and butt) all the way to the Phoenix airport. She so deserves some jelly 🙂 🙂

  4. Tracey says:

    Looks delicious! And you’re very brave…

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