This post is a twofer…I’ve got a very, very simple Basil Jelly recipe for you, as well as a fabulously easy and delicious Basil Tea Biscuit (read: Basil Shortbread Cookie).
My basil is going great guns in Saucy’s Wee Kitchen Garden. I’ve been making and freezing pesto, as well as just basil preserved in olive oil; I’ve been using basil in pasta, on sandwiches, in mayonnaise, in salads and sauces.
I was visiting with my sister recently and she gave me a recipe she had found for basil jelly. Perfect! I needed to use my basil in something new. The jelly recipe was so easy and it turned out so remarkably well, I had to share it with you. This basil jelly is a surprisingly vibrant flavour; it’s so refreshing and sunny. And it couldn’t be simpler to make.
I plan on using it as gifts…I think it’s perfect for that! Just make a bunch…you’ll want to keep some too. And don’t be afraid of the canning…this jelly is sealed up tight in just a fifteen minute hot bath in boiling water.
So, once I made the jelly, I thought it would be the perfect topping for a tea biscuit…and what better to highlight the sparkling flavour of the jelly than a shortbread-style basil cookie? Not only that, it gave me yet another vehicle in which to use my plethora of basil. *big smile*
The tea biscuits are also incredibly easy, unexpected and bright in flavour. The longest part of this recipe for Basil Tea Biscuits is the refrigeration time for the dough. They took about 3 minutes to mix up, 30 minutes to chill and 12 minutes to bake.
It’s time to enjoy a spot of tea…do it in style with Basil Tea Biscuits and homemade Basil Jelly.
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves (firmly packed), chopped fine
- 1 package (1-3/4 ounces) powdered fruit pectin
- 4 cups sugar
- (optional green food coloring – 2 drops)
- In a large saucepan, bring the water and basil to a boil.
- Remove from the heat, cover and lest stand for 20 minutes.
- Strain and discard the basil.
- Return 3⅔ cups liquid to the pan.
- Stir in the pectin (and food coloring, if desired).
- Return to a rolling boil over high heat.
- Stir in the sugar.
- Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Remove from the heat and skim off the foam.
- Carefully ladle the hot mixture into your jars (3 pints – I used 2 pint jars and the rest quarter pint jelly jars), leaving ¼ inch of head space.
- Remove air bubbles, wipe rims, place lids on the jars.
- Process for 15 minutes in a boiling-water bath (you can use a canning pot, or any pan that will hold your jars and cover the tops with water-it is good to have a rack on the bottom of the pan to keep the glass jars from touching the bottom of the pan).
- After 15 minutes, remove the jars from the hot water and set on a towel to cool completely. The lids will seal and you will hear them pop. After they have cooled, to ensure you have a tight seal, press the center of the lid. If they pop, they haven’t sealed…any jar that didn’t seal you can refrigerate. Sealed jars store in a cool dry place (like your pantry).
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, chopped
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- In a food processor, pulse together the flour, basil, and salt, until the basil is dotted throughout the flour.
- Add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and butter.
- Pulse together just until a dough is formed.
- Place dough on a sheet of plastic wrap, and roll into a log, about 2½-inches in diameter.
- Tightly twist each end of wrap, and chill in refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375° F.
- Slice the log into ⅓-inch thick disks.
- Place on parchment or silpat lined baking sheets, 2 inches apart.
- Bake until the edges are just brown, about 12 minutes.
- Let cool on sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks and cool to room temperature.