A non-profit initiative of the Permaculture Education Institute & Morag Gamble

Native Violet Jelly

by | April 30, 2021 | Permayouth

In our family, my Mum makes lots of jams, jellies, relishes and chutneys.

I want to share with you one of my favourite jellies that she makes at this time of the year – Native Violet Jelly.

Mum sends me into the garden to pick hundreds of beautiful pale mauve and white flowers. It takes me a long time but the effort is worth it.

The native violet (Viola hederacea) is an Australian evergreen perennial ground cover that spreads fairly slowly and grows to around 10cm high.

They are such a pretty addition to salads, but can be used in sweet and savoury dishes. When I decorate a cake, I love to use native violets as a delicate finishing touch.

The thing I love most about the Native Violet Jelly is the colour.
It’s a magical amethyst colour which reflects the beauty of the flowers. The flavour is somewhat mild and sometimes we put a little rose water to add a more complex floral note.

When gathering the Native Violets, always gather on a dry day and gather in an area you know that pesticides have not been used and dogs have not peed on them.

Make the violet tea soon after picking while the flowers are nice and fresh. Always use a deep pot as, like making jams, once the boil happens, the mixture expands.

Before starting, remember to get your jars in the oven or in a large pot of water for sterilising.

The recipe my Mum uses has been in my Mum’s hand-written recipe book since before I was born & now here it is…

Ingredients

  • 3 cup violets flowers fresh

  • 3 cup boiling water

  • 1/3 cup lemon juice

  • 75 g pectin

  • 3 cup sugar

Method

  1. Rinse and drain the violets & place in a heatproof bowl.

  2. Cover with boiling water and allow too steep for up to 24 hours.

  3. Strain the liquid through a fine cloth and squeeze the excess liquid from the violets.

  4. Pour the liquid into a saucepan and add the lemon juice. Whisk in the pectin (jam setter) and sugar.

  5. Bring to a rapid boil and continue whisking until the sugar dissolves completely. Decrease heat so the liquid is just boiling & allow to simmer for approximately 5 minutes, or until jelly has reached setting point.

  6. Skim off any foam and pour into prepared hot, sterilised jars. Seal with lids.

– By Eve Ballard

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