This pineapple jelly is so refreshing you will keep going for more; it is a light dessert and the pineapple pieces taste incredibly fruity and juicy. Eat this on a hot sunny day to cool off. This is a no waste recipe using pineapple skin to make the jelly, and I am also sharing a little trick to keep the pineapple pieces fresh and juicy!
Using pineapple skin to make jelly
Yes, this is the trick I am talking about and it works! When cutting a pineapple so much of the flesh is lost as we tend to cut big chunks of it with the aim of removing the eyes which lie deeper in the flesh. Try cutting the skin thinly then removing the eyes using diagonal, v-shaped cuts. However, if you do not have the patience or skill to cut a pineapple without wasting big chunks of it, then use the skin wisely. Most of the sweetness is actually on the outer flesh of the pineapple and it would be a shame to waste all the good bits.
Whenever I get hold of a fresh pineapple I boil the skin and use it to make a jelly dessert, an infusion or even a cordial. The jelly dessert tastes of fresh pineapple and it is very satisfying. This method is also one of my sustainable ways of cooking as none of the best flavour is being wasted.
You only need a few ingredients
Pineapple: A whole fresh pineapple is best for this recipe. Use both the skin and flesh.
Agar agar: This is a plant-based gelatin derived from seaweeds. It comes in the form of a powder, strands or bars and they are mostly available in asian supermarkets.
Sugar: Use caster sugar to sweeten the jelly.
Useful tips for the perfect pineapple jelly
- First of all remove the skin. I usually use a serrated knife and try to cut the skin as thinly as I can before using a diagonal knife motion to remove the eyes. You might need a few attempts to get the correct angle.
- Core the pineapple and cut the flesh into thumb-sized chunks. Boil the skin until the water becomes a pale yellow colour and it tastes of pineapple juice.
- Discard the skin and pass the juice through a sieve to remove all the bits from the skin. You can use a cheesecloth to remove the residue so the juice is clear.
- Bring it back to the boil and add the agar agar to melt it. Use a whisk when mixing the agar agar into the juice to stop it from forming lumps.
- The trick is to add the pineapple pieces at the last minute so they taste fresh. When eating the jelly you get the most refreshing pieces of pineapple.
- Serving suggestions: Add fresh pineapple puree on the jelly when serving; pour a little Malibu coconut liqueur on top for a boozy dessert; Turn it into a pinacolada by drizzling coconut milk on top.
Vegan Pineapple Jelly Dessert
- 200 g fresh pineapple slices
- skin of 1 fresh pineapple
- 1.5 tsp agar agar
- 50 g caster sugar
- 700 ml water
- 75 g sliced pineapples for the sauce optional
- Boil pineapple skin: Add water, sugar and pineapple skin in a heavy-based pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20 minutes.
- Add agar agar: Strain the pineapple-infused water and bring it back to the boil. Using a whisk stir in the agar agar. This will help it dissolve quicker without sticking to the bottom of the pan. Boil for 5 minutes stirring continuously.
- Add the pineapple slices and stir well. Boil for another 2-3 minutes. Pour the mixture in a bowl or mould and leave to cool before setting in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
- Pineapple sauce: Blend the pineapple slices in a blender and boil with 1 tsp sugar for 2 minutes. Chill for 30 minutes.
- Serve: Serve the jelly with a garnish of mint leaves and pineapple sauce and enjoy.
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