Recreating Home Recipes for Factory Production
When demand for our pepper jelly exceeded what I could produce in my home kitchen I began searching for new avenues to produce in a larger quantity without compromising taste, texture and color. It sounds silly but my jellies were always a lot prettier than any I had purchased and I did not want to give that up.
I searched Delaware, Maryland and Virginia for a good fit.
I finally found the perfect fit at Lancaster Fine Foods in the heart of the Lancaster Dutch farmland.
Finding a factory that fits your company values is the first step. Then the trials begin. Over a six-month period I made many trips to do test batches of Heavenly Pepper Jelly. Apparently it's not simply a matter of quadrupling your home recipe, measurements need to be tweaked. We finally nailed down the recipe and it was all the same ingredients as my home kitchen, and the peppers used were local and hand seeded, much to the chagrin of the workers at Lancaster Fine Foods.
One of the reasons I went to the factory level was the toxic level the fumes reached in my kitchen when I was seeding and chopping many jalapenos and habaneras. Throw a whole jalapeno in your garbage disposal and take a whiff, you'll see what I mean!
Click any thumbnail below to view the photo gallery.
Pictures of factory production, from hand seeding to a conveyor belt of jellies ready to be enjoyed!