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Old 08-22-2011, 07:29 AM   #1
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Default Wine from Jelly

Friends were gifted with about a dozen jars of grape jelly when their dad developed diabetes...it was his stash for the Apocalypse I guess... and now they are borderline diabetic and don't like grape jelly much anyway. I have a horror of wasting food, and had the bright idea of turning it into wine. Why not? I came across this forum in one of my searches. Has anyone tried this?

Being the impatient sort, I had used a half quart of it in a recipe instead of grape juice, and had this jelly sitting there, so, having no wine making equipment, I simply mostly dissolved the jelly in hot water, added some ancient bread yeast I had in the fridge, and set it in the cabinet with the lid loose. The yeast went to work, and several days later it actually smelled like concord wine. I gave it a couple weeks until it seemed to quit bubbling and poured it off into an empty wine bottle (avoiding most of the sludge and a few lumps of jelly that still remained). Except for being cloudy (which I expect is part yeast and part pectin) and a bit yeasty tasting, it is drinkable at an age of a month or less. A small amount of fermentation is still happening, as my cork "pops" when I check on it, so I'm venting this every day or so, and assuming I don't drink it all in the meantime will decant the remainder when it quits releasing gas,since I'm sure there is sludge on the bottom. Then if it ages a while, I think it will be quite palatable, at least for cooking.
But I really would love to know if anyone has tried to ferment jelly in a more polished way. I made up another batch- splitting it into 2 quart jars- which with fresh yeast is frothing up a storm I'm hoping to be less broke in a month or so, and then I can invest in some real things like an airlock and wine yeast.

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Old 08-22-2011, 12:28 PM   #2
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I haven't thought of that but I have thought about making a very grapey wine and adding pectin and making wine jelly. I'm not sure how well it will work, but it's worth a try.

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Old 08-22-2011, 12:37 PM   #3
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I've done a wine made with cranberry sauce- you know, the canned stuff that people use at Thanksgiving. I found a 6 pound tub of it and the Dollar Store, so I couldn't resist.

You can do it, but I wouldn't have used bread yeast in it. Wine yeast is like $.50 cents a package. Bread yeast will taste yeasty, generally speaking, for a long, long time and the lees won't stop.

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Old 08-22-2011, 12:37 PM   #4
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The gelatin may make it cloudy for longer than you want to wait for it to clarify.

Find a local home brew shop (LHBS) and get a packet of actual wine or a neutral ale yeast and a few fermentation locks and some drilled bungs to fit whatever you are fermenting in. Fermentation happens long after the bubbles stop and the yeast will actually clean up a lot of the esters and phenols created during the active stages. After a month or more cold crash it in the fridge, decant and age until drinkable.

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Old 08-22-2011, 12:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BryanThompson View Post
I haven't thought of that but I have thought about making a very grapey wine and adding pectin and making wine jelly. I'm not sure how well it will work, but it's worth a try.
OT, but I made grape jelly out of Montepulciano grapes last year. I noticed it required more pectin than was recommended.

Had to cook it 3 times to get a decent set.

Good luck tho. This year I may do Merlot jelly. Makes for great Christmas gifts! Very well received.
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Old 08-22-2011, 01:08 PM   #6
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And BEHOLD.....

He turned jelly into wine.

Wine is SO easy compared to beer.

Do it right next time.

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Old 08-22-2011, 03:37 PM   #7
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I made a successful jelly wine several years ago but the cost, if you have to buy the jelly, doesn't make sense. There are several online recipes, including one on Jack Keller's website.

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Old 08-24-2011, 08:03 PM   #8
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Default Thanks guys

I was planning to hit the local shop that has both proper yeast and equipment, as soon as I had some money. The gas to go pick up a bucks worth of yeast wasn't worth it when I could experiment just for giggles for free. Not finding an answer, I looked for my own, having had a couple friends poo-poo the whole concept. Payday I hopefully have enough extra for a fermentation lock, yeast, and a better/bigger container , as well as some spices I need I like to get there.

I don't plan on making jelly wine if I have to buy the jelly. But with several quarts I will never use sitting around, I wanted to find some use for it. The cranberry sauce idea sounds intriguing. It may be what I do with Thanksgiving leftovers, though it would be home made rather than canned, unless I find a 5# tub at the dollar store.

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Old 08-24-2011, 08:09 PM   #9
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Default I made wine jelly

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I haven't thought of that but I have thought about making a very grapey wine and adding pectin and making wine jelly. I'm not sure how well it will work, but it's worth a try.
It has been years, but one summer my dad went on a canning binge when he got gifted a bushel of tomatoes and another of peaches. From there we went to jelly, and there was one recipe that used sherry. A very light tasting jelly that was super simple. It just takes a lot of pectin. You can use apple peels to up pectin content naturally. I'm thinking if you use homemade wine adding a few peels to the jelly process might be good. I'm not sure I'd do a grape, but an apple wine turned to jelly might be fabulous.
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Old 08-25-2011, 02:21 AM   #10
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Sorry, figured you had some equipment.

Good for you for experimenting!
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