Lemon Jells

I was finalizing a care package for a friend of mine and wanted to add some lemon flavored candies in the package.  These tasty jells were just the ticket, though I won’t be making these again in the middle of a heat wave!  With a sweet inside and an optional puckery outside… you could probably also make them with limes or grapefruits if you chose.
Lemon Jells (makes 64-81 jells)
You will need:
A candy thermometer 
A heavy, non-reactive, 2 quart saucepan
8 or 9 inch square baking pan
Ingredients:
  • 4 envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 2 cups of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of superfine sugar (for coating)
  • Up to 1 tablespoon citric acid (optional for puckery coating)
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 3/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated lemon rind (or 1/4 tsp. Penzey’s powdered lemon peel)
  • Optional 1-2 drops yellow food coloring
Directions:
  1. Spray baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Set aside.
  2. Put 1/2 cup of the cold water into a bowl.  Add gelatin to soften.  Do not stir.  Set aside.
  3. In saucepan, add remaining water and 2 cups granulated sugar.  Set on medium-high heat to dissolve sugar, stirring often.  When it comes to a boil, set candy thermometer on side of pan.  Do not stir!
  4. Let sugar mixture cook until it reaches the hard ball, 260 degree setting on the thermometer.  Remove from heat.
  5. Add gelatin.  Mixture will foam up.  Stir until combined (about 30 seconds).  Add in food coloring if using and lemon juice and rind.  Stir until combined.
  6. Pour mixture into square baking pan.
  7. Leave pan on the counter for 3-4 hours until the jell is set.  Do not refrigerate.
  8. Combine superfine sugar and citric acid if using in a small cereal bowl.  Lightly sprinkle jell square so it is easier to handle.  Gently flip pan and remove jell with a flexible spatula.  It should plop right onto your cutting board. 
  9. Cut jells into 8 or 9 1 inch columns (depending on your pan) and cut those into 8 or 9 pieces each.
  10. Now comes the messy and fun part.  Coat each jell with the sugar/citric acid mixture.  Your hands will get sticky. 
  11. Place pieces in a container with a bit of sugar in the bottom.  If stacking, add wax paper in between each layer and add a bit more sugar to the bottom of the new layer.  If your area is hot or humid, the sugar/citric acid will soak into the jells and might need to be reapplied if you prefer.
Enjoy!  Oh, and here is a reaction from Em… despite the massive puckery faces he made, he kept coming back for more!  Have a great weekend everyone!

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