So, my first day of law school begins in about an hour. Taking a couple years off has been great for me, but at times many people have asked if I was nervous that it would be hard to get back “into the groove.” What they were really asking was if I was nervous that my brain will have stopped working. Ignoring the somewhat insulting implication, I considered  what I was actually nervous about: waking up early. Would I be physically capable of getting up before 7 because, well, I hadn’t done that in a couple of years. And wow, what a shocker. I couldn’t fall asleep from excitement last night and when Adam’s alarm went off at 6:15 this morning, my eyes burst open like it was my birthday and there would be a present waiting for me on the dining table. Apparently I have no problem waking up early…yet.

Now, why is this jelly called back to school jelly? Because, in a similar way to Harissa (that deliciously life-transforming red chili sauce that I posted a couple months ago), this jelly will “get you back into the groove,” or whatever non-offensive groove you have fallen out of. It’s a real hit to the taste buds at the early hours when your coffee hasn’t yet brewed and you can’t find your pants. It’s the perfect balance of sweet and spicy. It’s not overwhelmingly sweet like jam, in case you don’t like to start on your mornings on a sweet note (like me), and it has a really subtle “man behind the curtain” spicy kind of kick. It’s slightly reminiscent of red chili sauce (that you use for Asian foods) but a lot more like a relish and it doesn’t leave that feeling of sticking to your insides like red chili sauce does.

I tasted this a couple weeks ago for the first time at a friend’s house. She bought some from the Farmer’s Market and after my first taste I was totally intrigued how someone would make this. The listed ingredients on her jar that I could remember were: sugar, peppers, and vinegar. ODD combination, to say the least. SUPER ODD appearance and SMELL while cooking. DELICIOUS, STICKY taste (and that’s what we’re here for, right?) for your meats, fish, crackers, toast and _____. You can decide on the last one–be creative and let me know what you used.

What you need: 

1 c red bell pepper; finely, finely chopped

1/2 of a green jalepeno (I used only 1/4 and it wasn’t spicy enough. I had to add tobasco, but just circumvent that little bump and go for 1/2)–It should be about 2 tsp worth

3 c sugar (it will NOT be overwhelmingly sweet)

3/4 c white vinegar

How to do it:

Bring all the ingredients to a boil in a sauce pan or a large frying pan. Let boil for about 15 minutes and then let simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes. Pour mixture into a jar and refrigerate. The next morning you will awake to the proper consistency and be ready to “groove.” Enjoy!

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2 thoughts on “Back to School Red Pepper Jelly

  1. This looks so good! I love that you figured out how to make it. Mmmm. Good luck with school!!

    1. Thank you! Great to hear from you!

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