Murski Homestead Bed & Breakfast Basil Cranberry Jelly Recipe
By Hazel M. Freeman
Deep in the heart of bluebonnet country, tucked into the beautiful foothills of the Texas Hill Country, you’ll find the lovely Murski Homestead B & B. A mere five minutes or so from charming historic Brenham, the Murski Homestead, built in the early 1890’s, was the original homestead of Polish immigrant Jakub Murski, Jr. This true-to-life Texas homestead has remained in the Murski family and has been passed down to current owners Thomas Murski, a great-great-grandson, of Jakub, and his wife Pamela.
Though no longer the permanent residence of the current Murski family, Thomas and Pamela have lovingly restored the family home. The original homestead has been transformed into a beautiful, secluded B & B that continues the long tradition of providing comfort, enjoyment, and special memories, to the many quests lucky enough to find this little piece of heaven in the Texas hills. At the Murski Homestead you’ll find a peaceful, quiet, escape from your hectic day-to-day grind.
You can sit on the porch swing and enjoy a glass of wine while watching the sunset, take a driving tour and explore the back roads of historic Washington County, the birthplace of Texas, go birding, biking, hiking, or do some shopping and gallery hopping around charming Brenham. During a stay at the Murski Homestead you’ll find it’s easy to fill your time or leave it blissfully unfilled, it’s up to you.
If you like the idea of combining a relaxing getaway with the exciting opportunity to hone your culinary skills, Pamela Murski offers fun, creative and delicious cooking classes for her guests. Pamela teaches participants new cooking skills, how to cultivate and cook with herbs, prepare fresh healthy cuisine, or create delectable jams and jellies, all this in a setting right out of a Home & Garden magazine. During her B & B cooking classes, Pamela enthusiastically shares her many years of culinary experience and her down-home philosophy of growing and cooking with the freshest ingredients to create delicious foods that will make you a star in your own kitchen.
But don’t let the notion of cooking classes scare you away. If you’re idea of a great getaway is to let someone else do the cooking than, you can kick off your shoes, find a comfortable spot on the porch swing and simply relax and enjoy the large helping of gourmet food and B & B hospitality, served up Texas style at the Murski Homestead.
For more information on the Murski Homestead B & B visit: www.murskihomesteadbb.com. On the website you can sign up for the Murski Homestead newsletter and free recipe of the month. Pamela has given permission to reprint one of her recipes here just for you so get cooking!
Basil Cranberry jelly – Pamela Murski, the Murski Homestead B & B
A wonderful balance of flavors and translucent color make this jelly a lovely gift from your garden.
Prep: 35 minutes. Process; 5 minutes
2½ cups cranberry juice
1½ cups fresh basil leaves
3½ cups sugar
½ teaspoon butter
½ of a 6-ounce package (1foil pouch) liquid fruit pectin
To make infused juice: In a medium saucepan, combine cranberry juice and basil. Bring to boiling; remove from heat. Cover and steep for 10 minutes. Strain out and discard basil. Measure 1¾ cups of the infused juice. Discard any remaining juice.
In a large heavy kettle, combine the 1¾ cups infused juice, sugar, and butter. Bring to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly. Quickly stir in pectin. Return to a full rolling boil; boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim off foam with a metal spoon.
Ladle into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars, leaving a ¼ inch headspace. Wipe jar rims. Place hot, sterilized lids on jars immediately; adjust lids. Process in boiling-water canner for 5 minutes (start timing when water returns to a boil). Remove jars; cool on racks. (May take several days to set.) Makes about 5 half-pints.