Moscato is my favorite wine. It’s sweet and fruity; I actually got to buy the gem of a grape when we lived in San Antonio. I would buy pounds and pounds of them, getting my “fix” without the added sugars or alcohol. The local winery, Duplin, makes a wonderful Muscadine wine which is tasty, too, and pretty similar to the Moscato I adore so much. What follows is a recipe that would be fantastic to serve with “adult” peanut butter and jelly hors d’oeuvres or warm brie and crackers. Being jelly, it’s fine at room temp, but like the Mother Wine itself, it is best served chilled. Enjoy!
Moscato & Vanilla Bean Jelly
(makes 9 half-pint jars)
The Grub You’ll Need:
7c Moscato wine
1 vanilla bean, halved
2 pkgs liquid pectin
the juice of one large lemon
What You’ll Do:
In a large, non-reactive pot, pour in the wine, the water, and the sugar. Stir well to dissolve the sugar. Scrape the vanilla seeds from the pod and drop them into the liquid. Put the pod halves in there, too. Reduce this mixture by at least 1/3 over medium-high heat, stirring often.
Begin to process your jars and lids.
Bring the wine mixture to a rolling boil, then add the lemon juice and pectin, stirring to combine well. When the temperature reaches 230-240F, test a small amount on a chilled plate. If it sets after a few minutes, turn the heat off and skim the surface. If it does not set to jell, continue cooking and test every five-ten minutes. Continue to scrape any scum or foam off the top. Remove the vanilla seed pods.
Fill your sterilized jars, leaving 3/4-1 inch of head room. Secure lids and rings and process in a rolling boil for no less than 15 minutes. After processing, let the jars rest on the counter top for at least 24 hours before moving them. Don’t open your jar of golden goodness for at least 48 hours.
**I don’t know the alcohol content of the jelly after cooking, so I’d imagine everybody who should stay away from wine, should stay away from this jelly, too. …no snacking and driving…**