Jelly Week

You’re down with the clown, right? Of course you are—you’ve got two ears, a heart, and a vestigial organ that processes Orange Faygo—and you’re either at or on your way to the 17th annual Gathering of the Juggalos in Thornville, Ohio. Whoop!! Whoop!! It’s gonna be four extremely non-stale, nonstop days spent in the company of Shaggy 2 Dope, Violent J, fellow Insane Clown Posse fans; performers like JellyRoll, Green Jelly, and #Baconomics; contortionists, lightbulb eaters, wrestlers, and skydivers dropping hatchet gear on the faithful from above. But even the most hardcore ninjas cannot subsist on raw, unfiltered dopeness alone.  

Rest is for the weak and unambitious (in the words of Juggalo supergroup F.I.R.E., “Fuck yo sleep!”) but food is fuel for the Dark Carnival. Yes, several food courts throughout the Gathering grounds will be available for your 24/7 Triple-Nut Bundt Cake, Fried Nipple Nugget, Anus Danish, and Reese’s Feces needs, the Psychopathic All Star Experience offers an all-you-can-eat buffet, and “breakfast treats” will rain down like manna from Shangri-La at ABK’s sunrise Wake N Bake Bash. These things will surely feed a body, but what I’m talking about is chicken soup for the Juggalo’s soul. And by “chicken soup,” I mean Faygo jelly that you can spread on bread, muffins, or the nearest willing body.

Was this Orange Faygo Juggalo Jelly recipe birthed from my not-at-all secret obsession with making preserves from drinks most frequently found toward the bottom shelves of gas station fridges, my fondness and awe for the Insane Clown Posse and its peeps, and an extremely long bout with insomnia? Yeah. But I also sorta hate that preserves are often so pinky-damn-up. It’s all very: “Let’s watch Downton Abbey, eat money-stuffed scones at a B&B, and start a podcast that plays lots of Belle and Sebastian and never any GWAR.” Jelly is FUN. Jelly is for warriors. Jelly would be a super dope substance in which to wrestle or make a new friend. Jelly brings the family together.

You’ve just gotta ‘Lette yourself try it.

Orange Faygo Juggalo Jelly

  • Yields: 6-7 half-pint jars

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Heat jars in simmering water until it's time to fill them. (Hot liquid may cause a room temperature jar to crack and/or explode.)

  2. In a saucepan, boil Faygo until it's reduced down to 2 cups. Stir in water, sugar, and lemon juice until the sugar is thoroughly dissolved, and bring to a boil. Add butter to reduce foaming. Stir in pectin and boil furiously for 30 seconds while stirring. Remove from heat and skim excess muck from the top. Or don't.

  3. Working one jar at a time, pour the liquid into jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. (Note: A jar funnel significantly cuts down on mess and potential jelly-on-skin burn. You are a dope-ass ninja, but you are not immortal—yet.) Wipe the rim, place the lid on and close the band finger-tight. Return to the water and process for five minutes.

  4. Let the jars cool for at least 24 hours before checking how the jelly has set. Depending on the beverages used, this may take up to two full weeks.

  5. Note: Do not despair if the set is much softer than commercial jelly. Full sugar beverages fare better, and high-fructose corn syrup is a wild card. Then again, so are you, fam.