December 2017

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Hi, my name is Noveck and I have a pepper problem.

I adore 'em in all shapes and forms, and I went a little crazy the other day when The UWI's Faculty of Food and Agriculture had its weekly fresh produce sale. The sheer abundance and variety was like a pepper carnival and I found myself immersed in the parade of bands.

Alas, I went overboard and bought far too much. Revelling in my insanity, I decided by vaps that I should make a pepper jelly, having never made anything of this nature before in my life.

Now the basic food scientist in me knows that pectin is usually required for jellies as the thickening agent, and this particular ingredient was sorely lacking from my arsenal – so I was forced to Google. As a result, tip of the hat to Averie Cooks who managed to make some amazing looking pepper jelly on the stove, sans pectin.

So after the research and pilfering some granulated sugar from my mother's kitchen, I had ingredients and a plan. I decided that I'd play it safe and hold back on my initial plan of dumping some select herbs in there in the event that it killed the jelling process. Zero regrets, and I learned a thing or two.

This stuff was deliciously viscous, thick and sticky, wonderfully tart and sweet with a punch-to-the-throat backdraft heat. The impeccable paradox of starkly contrasting flavours seems to win. I figure this can be a substitute for chow chow on the meats this year. It's excellent as a cracker topper, with cheese, or even to incorporate into other dishes such as stir-fried noodles or vegetables. I would know. I've been eating it all week.

Give it a go!

Note: the collection of peppers amounted to about 4 cups in this recipe. You can mix and match as many different peppers as you like, once it works out to 4-5 cups max. This recipe yields about 1 pint (16 oz) or 2 cups of Pepper Jelly.


  • 2 yellow bell peppers, diced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 2 whole paprika peppers, diced
  • 3 pimento peppers, diced
  • 1 habanero pepper, diced
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 7/8 cup Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar (Pepper Perfect)
  • 1 tbsp fresh minced ginger
  • 1 tsp salt


  • Add peppers and vinegar to a heavy pot and bring to a rolling boil.
  • Reduce heat to medium-low.
  • Add salt, sugar and ginger.
  • Cook uncovered on medium-low heat for 30-40 minutes or until most of the liquid has cooked off.
  • Stir frequently to avoid sticking/burning.
  • Allow to cool in pot, spoon into a sterile glass jar.
  • Keep refrigerated.

Serves: 4-6

Estimated Prep Time: 1 hour