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HELP! My Sloe jelly seems too acidic
Mon 13-Sep-10
4:21 pm
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Sue Rickmansworth
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Mon 13-Sep-10
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Hi all,

Have made my first batch of sloe jelly today, it looks lovely and has set well but upon tasting it is fruity and sweet but renders the tongue very furry which I presume is due to too much acid. The berries used hadn't been frosted or home frozen. I have some more which I was intending to mix with apples to make a second batch, but am now not sure if freezing them first might solve the problem. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks Sue

Mon 13-Sep-10
5:26 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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wave Hello and welcome Sue.  I've no idea about your sloes but I'm sure that someone, probably Shelley or Brightspark, will have an answer.

I'll try that again!

Mon 13-Sep-10
7:32 pm
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brightspark
Wilts

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Warm welcome Sue.

I haven't made sloe jelly, but Fiona has a recipe for Apple and Sloe jelly, here, which you may like to try.

Depends how you made it, but I would cook the sloes till really tender and soft, probably about 30 mins plus, then drain in a jelly bag (without squeezing) and then measure the liquid and add equal amount of sugar to liquid. Boil for approximately 15 minutes, and test for set.

If that's what you did, then I don't know what else to suggest! Maybe you just need more sugar.

I honestly don't know about the freezing part, but as Toffeeapple said, perhaps Shelley may be able to help you, as I think most people use the sloes for sloe gin !!

Oh, and after straining for the jelly, you could still use the fruit for sloe gin, if you're into that !!

brightsparklystuff

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
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Just make your absence felt"
Mon 13-Sep-10
7:38 pm
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shelley
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It is often suggested that freezing the sloes before hand releases the sugars in the berries.. I was ok as mine were not too acidic!  Other than that I can only suggest more sugar

Mon 13-Sep-10
8:31 pm
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maggenpie
Cornwall, UK

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I've never had this problem either, but if the jelly isn't really edible as it is, how about heating it through again, then take a small amount out and try adding something to it. The thing that comes to my mind is ginger, simply because it works wonders on very tart rhubarb. Or vanilla, which makes everything taste sweeter? Although you say the sweetness isn't the problem it might help. If that doesn't work, scrap the first batch and try again after freezing the rest. Good luck and I'll be intrigued to know if you come up with a solution!

Never assume anything - except an occasional air of intelligence.

Mon 13-Sep-10
8:45 pm
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Sue Rickmansworth
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Mon 13-Sep-10
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Thanks everyone for the warm welcome  and for sharing your wisdom and tips, I had done exactly as Brightspark suggested but think I will try freezing the sloes I had for the second batch, before repeating the process, and will compare the results. I'll let you all know how I get on.

By the way we have very rich pickings of all hedgerow berries here in the South of England this year, does this seem to be country wide this year I wonder? I have already successfully made a lot of Bramble Jelly, and am hoping for some good Rosehip syrup when the hips are ready. I'm a mad fan of hedgerow harvesting!

Look forward to sharing again soon,

Sue

Tue 12-Oct-10
4:13 pm
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jellytot
Herts
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Tue 12-Oct-10
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I have just finished a new batch of sloe and crab apple jelly.  It looks beautiful but is  like cats tongue too.  It seems a shame to chuck it, but that may be what I will have to do.  Last year's medlar jelly had a similar feel but was delicious!?!

Tue 12-Oct-10
5:40 pm
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Toffeeapple
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wave Hello Jellytot, welcome aboard.  Wait until a jam/jelly maker is on line to get your answer, I expect Shelley will come up with a bright idea.

I'll try that again!

Tue 12-Oct-10
7:56 pm
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shelley
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I can only repeat the suggestions above I am afraid!

Try reboiling with more sugar; next time try freezing first to release the sugar...

 

sorry I can't be more help!smile

Thu 14-Oct-10
5:31 pm
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lizbeth
Hampshire
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Thu 14-Oct-10
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Hi Sue (and jellytot),

My suggestion, odd as it may seem, is try leaving it a while! I recently made raspberry and redcurrant jam, the redcurrants were under-ripe when I picked & froze them, and the jam was VILE at the setting point. When I test the set, I always lick the jam on the finger that has tested the crinkle, and I was wincing with the mouth fur, even though it was sweet and smelt lovely. This was the same batch of jam that leapt out of the pan all over the cooker top, so I was rather down and irritable about turning all my fruit into inedible jam. I jarred it up and ignored it for a week. Didn't even try the part jar, I was so annoyed. Finally I tasted it, all the fur was gone, though it is still pleasantly sharp! Rather runny, that's another story....

Good luck with the later batches!

Thu 14-Oct-10
5:43 pm
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Toffeeapple
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wave Hello and welcome Lizbeth!  Thanks for your input, I'm sure it will put Sue's and Jellytot's minds at rest.

I'll try that again!

Thu 14-Oct-10
6:36 pm
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ep
Bulgaria

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My sloe vodka and gin are.... absshholuteeely wonderful....hic...and hello and welcome to you all from the Bulgarian arm of the forum....I suppose sticking them in alcohol saves all the trouble of setting point.....and furring tongue.....the only furring tongue I get is in the morning when I know that maybe I should have stopped a little earlier than I did.....

Well that's the way it goes....you win some but again.....welcome......

Who lives long sees much : The diary of my life in Bulgaria

Fri 22-Oct-10
12:34 am
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Hello, Suzy and Lizbeth - kindly ignore some of our more exotic Bulgarian inhabitant (singular). It is late at night and the sun and drinks sink really quickly over there! big_laugh 

I am delighted and surprised at your discovery, Lizbeth. But it may make sense in certain circumstances if you consider that acid based concoctions like chutneys mature and improve over time.

Even so, there must be a basic cause for your "furry tongue" problem, Suzy. i must have a chat with Fiona. Ours always works out fantastically well.

Never knowingly underfed

Sat 27-Nov-10
8:55 am
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sloegin
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Hi, and apologies for the late reply as I just saw this forum while wondering whether to make a sloe jelly.

I think the answer to your problem might be to pick the sloes after the first few days of frost. The problem with furry tongue is due to tannins in the sloes, the same thing that makes your tongue furry when you drink red wine. According to the (never wrong!) wikipedia, the blackthorn tree should withdraw tannins from the fruit in response to the first few days of frost. This effect is apparently not replicated by popping the fruits in the freezer, though perhaps that has other desirable effects, and it certainly didn't hurt my sloe gin last year.

So perhaps now is just the right time to try another batch. I'm just about to head out and pick some now. All the best with it. 

Tue 15-Mar-11
5:18 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Ah - at last a sensible rationale for the "wait for the first frosts" approach. I could never make any sense of that old pearl of wisdom until now.

Never knowingly underfed

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