As the evenings are getting that bit darker and pumpkins have started appearing in the supermarket, it got me thinking about Halloween and trick-or-treating. I love jellies and sweets, but sometimes you have to wonder what actually goes into these colourful jems- emulsifiers, weird E numbers, and lots of other unpronouncables. So, I decided to make some of my own home-made jellies. At least that way I would know exactly what I am eating. There is still quiet a lot of sugar in these beauties, but they sure did taste good. Next time I an going to experiment with some home produced colourings and flavourings. But  for now, this is my attempt at sweet delicious sugared jellies. This recipe is based on one by the wonderful Bakerella.

Ingredients:

  • 10 ml of vegetable oil
  • 250ml cold water
  • 4 Tbsp gelatin powder
  • 375ml cups boiling water
  • 800g of sugar
  •  1/4 tsp flavored extracts like lemon, orange, strawberry, peppermint
  • 1-2 drops food coloring (I used four colors)
  •  Extra  sugar for coating

Method:

Start by greasing  your tins, with vegetable oil. My tins were two rectangular 8 x 6 inch tins and had four individual sections. Basically, it’s the same battenberg tin, I used for the Rubik’s cube cake. Bakerella recommends  two 8 x 8 tin or one 9 x 12 tins.  However the battenberg tins are great, as you can make a variety of different colours at the same time. Once your tins are greased, you can start making the jellies.

Begin by placing the cold water in a large pot along with the gelatin. Leave to stand for about five minutes to let the gelatin soften a little. Next, add the boiling water and  stir gently until the gelatin has dissolved. Then, stir in the sugar and place on a medium high heat. Bring the sugar syrup to the boil and continue to boil for twenty five minutes, stirring all the time.  Once the syrup has boiled you are ready to place the mixture in the tin. Place the syrup in the individual sections of the tins. Next add colouring and flavouring to each individual section, e.g add lemon extract and yellow colouring to one section. Using a clean spoon for each section, quickly stir in the flavour and colouring so that  it’s evenly distributed. Continue adding the different colours and flavouring to the different sections, using a clean spoon each time. I went with four colours and four flavours. You could mix things up a little and have the green jelly taste like orange and the red jelly taste of lemon!

Now the hard part. You have to wait!  Leave the jelly to set overnight in the fridge, covered with cling wrap or tinfoil. Once the jelly has fully set, you are ready to cut it out.  Have a plate of granulated sugar at the ready.  Place a sharp knife in boiling water and then slide the knife around the edges of each section of the tin. Dip and clean the knife in boiling water again and slice each section of the jelly into large cubes.  Then remove the cubes and roll them in the sugar to make it easier to handle. You can then cut the larger cubes into smaller cubes and roll the edges in sugar. Continue with the rest of the jelly. Once you have the jelly all cut out into cubes, you need to let them set and crystalise. Place them all on a large baking sheet covered with greaseproof paper and let they dry out for at least two days at room temperature.  Now they are ready to eat. Keep fresh in an air tight container.