As the warm weather comes to an end, it is time to make the most out of the long balmy days (while it lasts!). You can never go wrong with serving jelly at your next party or BBQ! Here are three refreshing jelly recipes made from gelatin, konjac and agar-agar that are guaranteed to win over all your guests.
All across the world, Konjac, made from the tubers of the konjac root (a type of yam) is a popular choice for vegans. It is widely used as a meat alternative for gelatin. Konjac appears in many savoury dishes in Japanese cuisine such as oden, sukiyaki, and sashimi too.
Here are some interesting facts about konjac:
It contains a great amount of soluble fibre and some vitamins. Not only is konjac low in calories, but it also imparts a feeling of fullness. Therefore, it adored by those on diet! It also has numerous health benefits- konjac can regulate blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
It is mostly made of water (90%), konjac and seaweed powder. Konjac is high in fibre and aids digestion (konjac jelly does makes you poop!).
Try this refreshing and citrusy Yuzu Konjac Jelly. This light and zesty dessert that will go down well with everyone after a heavy meal.
Yuzu Konjac Jelly
- Heat up the 1 litre of water. Once it comes to the boil, lower the heat.
- Add the yuzu marmalade, lemon zest and konjac jelly powder. Start stirring immediately.
- Keep stirring for 5 minutes before adding nata de coco.
- Pour mixture into moulds.
- Let the jelly mixture rest in room temperature.
- Once the mixture has cooled down, allow it to set in the fridge for at least 3 hours before serving cold.
Notes: If your konjac powder is non-sweetened, mix the sugar with the konjac powder before adding to the liquid.
Gelatin (or gelatine) is the most common ingredient used all around the world for setting sweet or savoury liquids to create a jelly. The ingredient itself is a colourless substance that is made from the collagen found inside animal bones and skin.
An oldie but a goodie- these “Jell-o” shots are a simple and fun boozy treat. Colourful and delicious, they are always a hit at parties. These can be made with any gelatine flavour and spiked with your favourite liquor (with vodka and rum being the most popular options). This recipe is as easy as it gets.
How To Make Jelly Shots
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 1/2 cup vodka (or other liquor)
- 1 packet gelatin
- 1 cup boiling water
- Food colouring (optional)
- In a small bowl, combine the cold water and liquor of choice. Place the mixture in the refrigerator to cool.
- In a separate bowl, empty a packet of gelatin before slowly adding the boiling water. Stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
- Pour the gelatin mixture into the water and liquor mixture. Stir well.
- Add food colouring to change or enhance the color (optional).
- Pour the mixture into shot glasses or moulds.
- Refrigerate until the jelly sets.
- Serve cold and enjoy.
- How long does jelly take to set? It usually takes at least 2 hours, but overnight is recommended.
- How long does jelly last in the fridge? They are best stored for 1 month in the fridge.
Agar-Agar, also known as Kanten, is a gelatinous substance made from seaweed. In cooking, agar-agar is used as a vegetarian alternative to gelatin in a variety of dishes, including puddings, mousses, jellies, ice cream, gummy candies, and cheesecake. Unlike gelatin and konjac, agar-agar needs to be brought to a boil in order for it to set.
This recipe for mango panna cotta is the epitome of summer dessert- you can never go wrong with the tropical flavour combo of mango and coconut. It looks impressive but is deceptively simple to make! All you need are a few simple ingredients, a saucepan and your trusty blender.
Vegan Mango Panna Cotta
- 1 can full cream coconut milk
- 2 cups roughly chopped fresh mango, set some aside for garnish
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon melted virgin coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon agar-agar powder
- 1/4 cup toasted coconut chips flakes
- Combine the coconut milk, roughly chopped mango, maple syrup, and coconut oil into your blender, and blast on high until smooth and creamy.
- Pour the mixture into a saucepan and whisk in the agar-agar powder.
- Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over medium heat while stirring constantly. Then heat for about 5 minutes until the agar is completely dissolved and the mixture has thickened.
- Lightly grease a 6-hole standard muffin pan and distribute the mixture evenly.
- Chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours to set.
- To serve, gently slide a butter knife around the edge of each panna cotta. Place a cutting board over the top of the muffin pan, and, holding the two together, gently turn upside down. Tap the bottom of each muffin hole to dislodge each panna cotta.
- Serve on small plates topped with the fresh mango pieces and toasted coconut chips.
In Australia, gelatin is commonly found in the baking section of all major retail chains while konjac and agar-agar can be found in the natural food section of the health food stores and Asian groceries.