A Summertime Favorite: Lemon Verbena Jelly

http://www.motherearthliving.com/Food-Matters/summertime-favorite-lemon-verbena-jelly.aspx

n.heraud2Meet the Lemon Verbena Lady, one of our dedicated guest bloggers. She regularly blogs about the happenings in her herb garden and shares many of her most scrumptious herbal recipes. Lemon Verbena Jelly is one of her favorites, mainly because it is made with her favorite herb—lemon verbena. Here are just a few of the things that she loves about this citrusy herb. 

I think my brain has been frazzled by the heat and humidity this summer. After having only two days during all of last summer reach above 85 degrees, we have had more than 15 days already this summer. There are no signs of the heat going away any time soon either. Remember we have the don't prune, don't move policy in our garden. Although we seem to be more open to both pruning and moving as we get older and more forgetful of the former policy. A major opportunity in the heat is when plants get toasted and die back, you can move herbs into empty spaces.

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My toasted feverfew from the heat.
Photo by Nancy Heraud
 

These two feverfew plants just seemed to die overnight. The Herbal Husband took advantage of the situation and moved my favorite herb into their space.

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My lemon verbena has gone crazy in its container!
Photo by Nancy Heraud
 

My lemon verbenas are both doing very well. We always have one in the ground and one in a container. This year the lemon verbena in the container is going crazy and needed to be in the ground. So I have both of my lemon verbenas in my herb garden. Herbal heaven for me!

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My blooming lemon verbena and basil thriving in my herb garden.
Photo by Nancy Heraud
 

One is blooming already along with my basils and the second one will be used for a lemon verbena bread, a lemon verbena jelly or both.

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This lemon verbena is ready to be made into bread or jelly.
Photo by Nancy Heraud
 

The Herbal Husband will be happy! I did a post about my favorite herb last year for The Herb Companion; it has my recipe for Lemon Verbena Bread in it. Here is my recipe for Lemon Verbena Jelly.

Lemon Verbena Jelly Recipe

MAKES FOUR 8-OUNCE JARS OF LEMON VERBENA JELLY

• 1 1/2 cups lemon verbena leaves, chopped
• 2 cups water
• 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
• 3 1/2 cups sugar
• 3 ounces liquid pectin (such as Certo)

1. Put lemon verbena leaves and water into a pan. Bring it to a boil, then take it off the heat and let it steep, covered, for 15 minutes. 

2. Strain and measure 1 1/2 cups of the infusion into a 3 1/2-quart or larger saucepan. Add the vinegar and sugar. Mix well and bring to a full boil over high heat, stirring constantly. Take off the heat briefly and add the liquid pectin; bring back to a full rolling boil and boil for exactly 1 minute. 

3. Have your jars sterilized either in the dishwasher or by boiling them for 10 minutes in water. Lids and rings can be in hot water until needed. (It is not necessary to boil them.) Skim foam from the Lemon Verbena Jelly with a spoon if necessary, pour into jars and add lids. Process jars in boiling water for 5 minutes. When you take them out of the pot, they should seal. If you press the middle of the lid and it pops back, it has not sealed properly. If they don’t, place any unsealed jars in the refrigerator and use them promptly.

Lemon Verbena Jelly 


You should be trimming and enjoying your herb garden. The heat has made my herb garden lush and fragrant and I have had a lot of moments this season where I realize exactly why I grow and love herbs. I hope you have had some of those moments as well. Talk to you again soon.