Suresh Chandra Gupta
Note from Mamta: Guava jelly is very popular in India, where this fruit grows in abundance. It has a lovely flavour, quite unlike any other fruit. If you choose the fruit correctly (not too ripe), it is an easy jelly to make. It was the most commonly made jelly in our house as we were growing up.
1 kg. half ripe, hard guavas. Ripe one have low pectin and the jelly will not set. See Pectin test* below.
4 tbs. fresh lime juice
Enough water to cover the chopped fruit (see step 2)
Sugar (see step 6)
Wash and cut fruit roughly.
Place in a pressure cooker with just enough water to jcover the fruit.
Bring to full pressure and cook for 7-8 minutes. (Fruit can be simmered briskly in a pan, until soft).
Cool pressure cooker and open. Mash fruit with a ladle/masher.
Pour it in a muslin bag and allow to hang for a few hours/overnight, without squeezing. Squeezing may get last drop of juice out, but it will make your jelly cloudy. Collect the juice in a bowl and measure it. Place it in a large pan and warm it.
Add 800 gm. sugar to every litre of juice.
Dissolve it over low heat.
Now increase heat, bring it to boil and cook until setting point is reached**. Remove any scum that forms during boiling, using a tea strainer.
Bottle *** as given below
**Setting point is reached when 1) a temperature of 220 F or 104-105 C is reached. Some high pectin fruits will set at a lower temperature of around 100 C, so use other checks too. 2) when dropped from the edge of a wooden ladle, it partly congeals and drops from the ladle in triangular sheets, the last triangle remaining suspended for 8-10 seconds. 3) if you stretch a drop of the liquid between your forefinger and thumb, it almost makes one wire. 4) when you place 1 tsp. of the liquid on a chilled plate and then part it with a finger, the jelly remains parted. All thermometers are not accurate. Therefore, carry out other tests for setting point as well.
Heat jars in an oven for 15 minutes. Place them on a wooden board.
Place a spoon in the jar (to avoid it cracking) and pour the jelly using a metal funnel.
Close screw top lids and turn the jar up-side-down. This creates a better seal and prevents mould formation-Tip from Ian Hoar. Allow to cool.
Label and store.
Place 2 tsp. of juice in a glass jar. Add 1 tsp. methylated sprit slowly and swirl it around. If it form a solid mass, the pectin is very good. If it makes 2-3 lumps, pectin is mediocre. If no gelatinous lump is formed, it is very poor in gelatin and jelly will not set without the commercial pectin.