Friday, October 17, 2014

Cactus Pear Jello

cactus pear jello with lychee and yogurt
The extracted cactus pear juice is a beautiful red.  I spoke to a farmer on Maui and she mentioned that her friend makes jello from the juice.  I have never tried so I decided to experiment using unflavored gelatine.   I used the box instructions as a guide and instead of using fruit juices I added 1 1/2 cups water since my cactus pear juice was concentrated.  Once the jello is firm I added it to lychee (unfortunately came from a can) and store bought yogurt; the combination is strange but delicious.  If you want you can also make jello shots for your party.  Recently I was at my friend, Gigi's 50th surprise birthday party.  Yes, Gigi was very surprised and we all had an amazing time at her party.  Her friends, Chris and Rebecca came with a cooler full of very colorful jello shots.  They said they made 150 shots!  At the end of the night they gave me their recipe and I will share it with you today.  Thank you Chris and Rebecca!  Happy birthday to Gigi!

Cactus Pear Jello 


1/2 C Cactus Pear Juice I (1st Batch)
2 Tbsp honey (more or less according to your taste)
1 1/2 C water, heated to just boiling
2 envelopes KNOX Unflavored Gelatine


1) Use a container or pan that you want to have the jello in.  Mix Cactus Pear Juice and honey.  Sprinkle gelatine on top.  Let it sit for about a minute.
2) Add the hot water and stir until gelatine is dissolved.
3) Cover and refrigerate until firm (about 2-3 hours).

*May substitute honey with sugar or another sweetener that you prefer.
*I used a glass pan 7 x 11 x 2 (inch) to make my jello.  In the past I try to speed up my jello by putting the container in the freezer for 30 minutes.  If you want to put it in the freezer just remember to take it out!  Having said this I do not recommend placing glass in the freezer.
*You can eat the jello however you prefer.  I cubed the jello and added to a few lychee fruits and yogurt.

Chris and Rebecca Jello Shots

Chris and Rebecca said to use "a little less water than the directions say.  Substitute vodka for cold water (but a little more)"!

*I want to add that when they said "the directions", they meant the box instructions NOT the recipe from above where you use 1 1/2 cups vodka...unless you want to knock your guests out!  They used coconut flavored vodka in their jello shots.

Here is my version of the jello shots using cactus pear juice, inspired by Chris and Rebecca.  It's my first time making these using my highly prized cactus pear juice so I made a small batch.  Also my husband did not want me to waste any good vodka on my "experimental drinks"!  I had left over lychee so I cut each one into rings and dropped them into each jello glass.  I speed up the jell time by putting them in the freezer for 30 minutes.  The shots are pretty.  My husband said he can taste the vodka in the lychee rings.

cactus pear jello shots
Cactus Pear Jello Shots (six 2-oz shooters)


1/4 C Cactus Pear Juice I (1st Batch)
1/4 C Grey Goose Vodka or any other high quality vodka or liquor
1 1/2 Tbsp honey
1 envelope KNOX Unflavored Gelatine
1/2 C water, heated to just boiling
6 Lychee fruits, cut into rings (optional)


1) Pour juice, vodka and honey into a bowl.  Sprinkle gelatine on top.  Let it sit for about a minute.
2) Add the hot water and stir until gelatine and honey completely dissolved.
3) Cover and refrigerate until firm (about 2-3 hours). 

*Use any good Vodka.  You may substitute with rum or another liquor you prefer.
*Add cut up rings of lychee or another fruit if interested.

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