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This wonderful subtly flavored lemon verbena jelly is fabulous spread on scones or toasted brioche, or in the center of thumbprint butter cookies. Would make a lovely foodie or hostess gift. Adapted from Morning Sun Herb Farm in Vacaville, California.
- Put the lemon verbena leaves, lemon zest and water into a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over moderate to high heat, then turn the heat to simmer and cover the pan. Cook for 15 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat and allow to stand, covered, for several hours.
- Pour the infusion through a strainer into a large, deep saucepan. Press on the leaves to extract all flavor, then discard the leaves and zest. Stir in the lemon juice and sugar and bring to a full rolling boil over high heat. Add food coloring. Stir in the pectin and return to a full rolling boil. Boil hard for two minutes, stirring constantly.
- Remove from the heat and skim the foam, if necessary. Ladle the jelly into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Seal with new lids and metal rings.
- Process for 5 minutes in a hot water bath. Makes about five 6-ounce jars.
- This subtly flavored jelly is good with scones or toasted brioche, or in the center of thumbprint butter cookies.