I was contacted by Jokers’ Masquerade to review their skull jelly mould in preparation for Halloween. It couldn’t have been anymore perfectly timed as I had recently invested in lots of gelatine powder and I wasn’t really sure what to do with it.
My first impression of the product was that the detail of the mould was impressive and really captured the essence of Halloween. I definitely thought about using it for things other than jelly (more on that later!) but wanting to use up the gelatine, I started coming up with recipes for spooky jellies.
Red fruit juices were my first port of call for my Spooky Skull Jelly recipe. I thought about using cranberry, pomegranate and raspberry juices for different flavours of jelly but then I saw blueberry juice in the supermarket and I knew it would be perfect for a dark jelly. After some thought, I decided to stick with the red jelly as the details would be a lot clearer, and with such intricate details on the mould, it was important that I captured the details perfectly.
And it was with that I tried my jelly, using the pomegranate juice. The mould can hold up to 850ml of liquid and it was at this point I discovered a potential problem with the mould. Unless you have amazing balancing skills, the mould didn’t stand up on its own completely; it either tilted to one side or precariously balanced on its centre. I was fortunate enough to have a tray that managed to fit the mould exactly and kept it stable. Not everyone would have this so this is a possible way to improve the product by adding plastic stands to make it more stable, a small cost but a huge improvement.
Despite this, I carried on and the one thing to remember with gelatine is that every brand differs; leaves of Dr Oetker gelatine will differ from powdered gelatine from Dr Oetker, or Robertsons which is my preferred brand. Once you’ve find the gelatine that you like using, stick to it because they have differing strengths and will set different amounts of liquid for the same amount.
Because of the fine details in the mould, I decided to lightly grease the mould using a light vegetable oil (a tip I took from Nigella Lawson because this is something I never thought I would do) just to help it come out of the mould, as it wasn’t silicone and didn’t have anything to help release it.
If you really want to make it spooky as possible, add some jelly worms into the mould before you pour the jelly over and about an hour into the setting period. Make some decorations using black jelly beans and strips of liquorice for a spider or use halved green grapes with red eyes! If you want your spooky skull at the centre of a party, why not fill a rubber glove with water dyed with black food colouring, freeze and have it floating inside a jug of water to really freak out your guests (thanks for that Mrs Robinson!)
So here is the basic recipe I followed for my Spooky Jelly, using pomegranate juice
30g Robertsons gelatine powder (or the equivalent to set 750ml liquid for your gelatine)
25g granulated sugar
100ml boiling water
600ml pomegranate juice (or any juice you want, apple or mango would work just as well)
Vegetable oil, for greasing
Prepare the jelly mould by rubbing a little vegetable oil all over the inside of the mould, or you could a cake release spray instead. Find a baking tin, roasting tray or plastic container big enough to keep the mould sturdy and place inside. Set aside.
Pour the boiling water over the gelatine and sugar and stir until both have dissolved into a clear liquid. Add around 100ml of the pomegranate juice and mix until combined – this makes it easier to incorporate the gelatine mixture evenly.
In a heatproof jug, mix together the remaining pomegranate juice with the gelatine mixture until it is combined. Pour into the mould, adding the jelly worms (mentioned above) if you want. Allow to chill in the fridge for around 4 hours, or overnight if you want, until it has a good wobble, covering with clingfilm once set.
When you are ready to turn out the jelly, place a big enough plate or platter over the mould and invert the jelly. If you’ve greased it enough, it should pop out, otherwise use your hands to loosen from the edges and help it out.
I’ve loved doing this product review, it was a great product to try out, considering I had never been a fan of Halloween. I do have to say that unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the jelly (I committed food blogger sin #1) but I ensure you it was spookily delicious and scary! Find the mould I tested out here and check out the rest of Jokers’ Masquerade’s site just in time for Halloween: