... and every spring, in the witching hours, I'd climb down from the loft with the silky lasso held between chattering teeth, and set off across the pre-dewed fields to catch the moon-ripened unicorns, for maw was even then too old to do it, and Kitty had r-u-n-n-o-f-t with that farmhand when I was still a toddler. If memory serves, this is about how maw made her county-fair-winning Unicorn Jelly:
This recipe would actually make Unicorn Preserves, but that really doesn't have the same ring as Unicorn Jelly, does it?
- Gather ripe Unicorns, using maidens and silken lassos – be careful not to bruise them during capture!
- Soak Unicorns in cold water and rub with a thick cloth. (Tip: Wear gardening gloves to avoid getting the fuzz on your hands.) Never peel your Unicorns, as it dulls the flavor of the finished product, and removes much of the nutritional value.
- Cover the Unicorns with sugar, and leave overnight.
- Place two large saucepans on stove. In one, bring water to a boil; in the other, place the Unicorn and sugar mixture. Add the juice of two Griffons, and one half-cup Dragon Scales. Slowly bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. If necessary, add a few tablespoons melted Christmas Snow. Unicorns should become soft and pulpy.
While the jelly comes to a boil, pour boiling water over jelly jars. When jars are hot, place in warm oven.
- When jelly boiling point has been reached, stir constantly with a wooden spoon. Make sure to lift Unicorns from the bottom of the pan, to prevent scorching. Jelly is done when it sticks to the back of a spoon, or, if you have a candy thermometer, when it reaches 221 degrees F. The Unicorn Horns should be easily bendable, but not mushy – the “pasta test” may also be performed.
- Pour the Unicorns and syrup, while hot, into heated jars. Fill all the way to the brim. Let jelly cool completely.
- Seal jars and adjust clamps. Safety note: once jellied, Unicorn Horns do not protect your jelly from bacteria! Do not wipe away excess Unicorn from the tops of jars before putting the lid on, as that can introduce bacteria and result in Botulism!
- To sterilize: place sealed jars in large pan, fill with water until there is six to eight inches above the tops of the jars. Bring water to boiling and let jars boil for about twenty minutes.
- Remove jars from water and allow to cool upside down. If any jar leaks Unicorn, the seal is not airtight, and that jar should be disposed of or opened and re-boiled.
- Keep Unicorn Jelly in a cool pantry until needed. Enjoy with toast or add to roast Wendigo. Use your imagination!