Making Jelly from all those Mulberries!

transcription of “Making Jelly From All Those Mulberries” video..by The Urban Farming Guys..

This is our final product. So, I’ve got half-pint jars of mulberry jelly. There’s a couple ways to seal them. The way that we have sealed these is with a paraffin wax. Your pour it on the top & it makes an airtight seal. Oh, man, that’s cool!

So, here we are today with Jason Golden on his urban homestead here in Kansas City. He’s one of The Urban Farming Guys. So, what do we got here, Jason? This is my magnificent mulberry tree.

It’s June 6th. These have been fruiting for about a week. & I’m gently taking off the ones that are ripe & leaving the ones that aren’t ripe. There’s two ways you can do it. You can do it the laborious way, like I’m doing, picking each individual one off. Or, you can lay a tarp down & shake the whole tree. But, the trouble with shaking the whole tree is that the ripe ones & the non-ripe ones are gonna come off so you’re going to lose more of your harvest by doing that. So, I’m doing it the slow way. This is what we got. That’s about two cups or so. You try to get maybe eight cups per batch. We’ll take them inside. Alright!

So, we’re taking our mulberries from our tree in the front yard & sticking them through this ricer. Now, what this ricer is good for is extracting the juice. So, if you want to make a jelly or a clarified jelly, you’d want to get all the pulp out. Now, if you don’t want all the pulp, you can make a preserve & just use a potato masher & just crush them in the pan. We’re gonna try to extract some juice real quick.

What is the papery filter? This is cheese cloth & this is just to keep some of the solids from going through these little holes. Okay. You can strain it the second time if you’re really picky on how much to go through. What is that, a piece of wood? Yeah; I don’t know what you call this thing. Mortar & pestle?

We’re getting something! Mulberry juice! Man! & that thing was probably built just for the—what’s this thing here? This is a ricer. You can put apples through it, you can put grapes through it..anything that you want to squish. I don’t know why you’d put rice through it, but they call it a ricer. So, I’m pushing it kind of hard trying to get as much out of it as I can. You do lose quite a bit of your volume when you just extract the juice. That’s why a lot of people do preserves or jams. So, what are we making today? This is mulberry jelly. Now, ultimately, you’re going to want to do a bigger batch than this, but this is just to kind of show you how to do it. Here you go. Put all that stuff in your compost, man. Nice. Where is your compost at? It’s right behind you.

What do you got right there, man? Where is that? Right behind you. Oh, that’s my barrel-ponics. Alright, we’ll have to do a future episode on that, buddy. Ha ha ha. Alright, let’s take this goodness inside & see what we can make.

Alright, so here’s your parts & pieces. You’ve got your fruit juice/mulberry juice. We’ve got about a half cup. This is just a sample, just to show you how. You’d prefer to have about four cups. As a rule of thumb with mulberry jelly, if you want it to set up right, you will need to add equal parts sugar & juice. You also need to add a box of pectin. Mulberries do not have enough natural pectin to jell up on their own. You can also try substituting gelatin or corn starch. Or, if you want to do it with less ingredients, you can make preserves, using half the sugar & no pectin.

Now, we’re gonna take it over to the stove & get this guy going. So, how are we gonna make it into jelly? Well, we are going to heat up the juice until it begins to boil. Then, we are going to stir in the sugar & the pectin. You can also add a tablespoon of lemon juice. Then, bring it to a rolling boil. Then, cook it for one minute & pull it off. Make sure you have your canning jars sterilized in boiling water, ready to go, as soon as your jelly comes off.

So, here we are at the Golden Acre homestead. We’re cooking up some jelly, eating chicken salad sandwiches with chickens that were grown here. Right back there; there’s family members back there. & bread that was just freshly baked in the $2 bread maker from yesterday’s garage sale. Man, we are doing good here..Jelly from the mulberry tree, chicken from the back yard. I credit the bread & the chicken salad to my wife; I just opened the fridge & helped myself.

Here we are for the taste test..We got some of the mulberry preserves. We burnt up that jelly, we were having so much fun. So, we had to break out the preserves. But, all the same. Actually, these are gonna be better; not as sweet. Oh, man; that is good. Yeah, not sweet at all. Way less sugar in the preserves. Man, why do people let their mulberry trees just fall on the ground? This is great.

4 Responses to “Making Jelly from all those Mulberries!”

  1. Great video! I don’t have a mulberry tree in my yard, but I believe there are some in my neighborhood. I’ll have to see if I can “forage” some, or else offer to share some with the folks that actually have the trees…

    Appreciate the vid!

  2. John Carlson says:

    The metal strainer is a “collander” used as you have for crushing and straining fruits and foods. The one you have appears to be one popular in the 1950s and 1960s and one of the best made. A “ricer” is a whole different beast and is used to push mashed potatoes through to “rice” them. Past two years have planted six mullberries for wine, jelly and jam. Not a popular fruit I guess as considerd a poor mans food.

  3. Patrick says:

    Man, I wish I’d seen this video earlier this summer when I discovered, much to my surprise, that the knot of trees in the backyard of the house we’d just rented contained a very productive mulberry tree just hidden in plain sight. Next year I’ll have a better idea how to make the harvest last.

  4. Jill says:

    I believe that paraffin wax is no longer considered safe in canning. My mother used to do it but I read recently that it’s not a guaranteed way of keeping the baddies out. Look down at “safety” on this page http://allrecipes.com/HowTo/canning-and-preserving/detail.aspx but you can download a current USDA guide to canning by googling it.