I’ve always considered myself somewhat of a wine newbie. I really enjoy wine and drink it on a somewhat regular basis, but I do feel that the “wino” label should be reserved for those who can appreciate wine for more than just its color. When I finally started drinking wine, albeit after 4 years of living in Sonoma on top of spending a semester abroad in France, I like many others fell for the chilled sweet essence of white wine. Easy to drink, tastes like candy, and feels like summer.
Marisa from Food in Jars recently blogged a post about achieving an ideal gel set using a thermometer. I had been using the saucer and sheet tests to determine gel set, but neither of those methods were delivering reliable results. I figured I’d give the thermometer method a try with the hope that I’d see more consistent optimal jelly sets. Aside from it feeling more like science… the benefit of using a thermometer in jelly/jam/marmalade making is that the gel set can be determined based on internal temperature. At 220° Fahrenheit, sugar reaches its gel point to which it undergoes a physical transformation and thickens to the desired spreadable consistency. I had to calibrate my new thermometer first by testing it in boiling water, but overall the method proved most effective.