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Champagne Jellies

Asked by pankhuri. Answered on 18th May 2012

Full question

Could you please suggest a way to make a perfect champagne jelly? I would like to make the jelly as a base for a trifle for dessert. Thank you!

Our answer

For jellies (gelatins) made with any sparkling wine you want to preserve as many of the bubbles as possible. The easiest way to do this is to chill the bottle of wine thoroughly before you make the jelly. Use some of the champagne to dissolve the gelatine (you will need to warm it first) then let this mixture cool slightly before whisking in the remaining chilled champagne. Always add the chilled champagne to the dissolved gelatine mixture and not vice-versa as if you try to drop the gelatin mixture into the cold champagne the gelatine will set as soon it hits the cold liquid and form unpleasant, hard threads.

Pour the completed mixture into your trifle bowl and chill immediately. As the champagne is cold the jelly will cool and set quite quickly, with some of the bubbles still suspended in the jelly.

The other thing to bear in mind is that some sparkling wines are quite dry, especially champagne, and will need sweetening to make then suitable for a dessert. We would particularly recommend looking at Nigella's Prosecco and Pomegranate Jellies from her book Christmas as a great recipe for a sparkling wine jelly. Prosecco is a slightly more economical option than champagne, but you could substitute champagne if you prefer.

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