Apricot Pepper Jelly

It’s the MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR! Parties, cocktails, good food, “interesting” relatives, reconnecting with friends, and…did I mention the food?

No doubt you will be invited to many holiday parties over the next couple of months and you will be required to bring something to share. You are already having anxiety thinking about all the shopping, preparation, cooking, and GASP cleaning you will have to do. So let me make it a little easier on you and share an incredibly SIMPLE appetizer that everyone will devour.

You can buy fancy pepper jelly at William Sonoma for $11 for a 4 oz jar or you can go the semi-home route with this recipe I concocted last year. I made this simple appetizer up because my husband has always LOVED the pepper jelly over cream cheese dip and would always suggest we bring it for parties. BUT I knew there had to be a way for me to make a delicious one that didn’t have me shelling out $60 a season on this stuff.

Here is what you need:
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1 12 oz jar of Apricot Pineapple Preserves (Or just Apricot)
• I buy the Kroger brand from Fred Meyer. You can use another flavor if you like but Apricot or Peach are the best!

2 tsp of Red Pepper Chili Flakes (You can adjust the amount for how much or how little heat you want)
• You can buy a container of it in the spice aisle of Costco for about $4 that will last you YEARS.

1 Tbsp water
*Crackers and Cream Cheese are for the full appetizer

Here’s how you do it:

I use a double boiler for this recipe since the preserves are high in sugar and can scorch on the bottom of the pan easily. If you don’t have a double boiler you can easily use a glass mixing bowl placed over a 4 quart pot.

Fill the bottom of the double boiler about 1/3 full with water. You don’t want to fill it too much or it will boil over later on.

Turn the heat on medium high and bring the water to a rolling boil then reduce to medium.

Spoon half the preserves into the pan and keep stirring them to move it around. The preserves will start to loosen as they are heated.
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Add the water and pepper flakes to the jelly and stir to combine.
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Reduce heat to low and cook the mixture for about 15 minutes to really combine the flavors of the sweet and spicy…this stuff is going to be SO good!
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Remove the mixture from the heat and transfer to a dish-ceramic or glass is best. Place this mixture in the fridge to cool.
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Once the Pepper Jelly is cooled (about 1 hour) you can make this appetizer:

Open a package of cream cheese and place the cheese in the center of a serving dish. Generously spoon the jelly on top of the cream cheese so that it covers the top and spills over the sides. Serve with Wheat Thins and THAT’S IT!!!
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Seriously so easy and delicious. Enjoy!

-Tiffany

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