If you’re dealing with jello you know it can sometimes end up with a texture you’re not happy with. Or it may not set at all. So what can you do ?
Can you reheat jello to reset it ? If yes, what is the best way to go about it ? Can jello even be reset ? If there anything special you need to know before attempting this ? All this and more, coming right up.
Can you reheat jello ?
Yes, you can reheat jello as long as it does not come to a boil. Jello easily reacts to heat, which is why it keeps its shape so well when you store it in the fridge. Keep jello on the counter for too long and it will start to sweat.
Reheat jello in a double boiler
The best way to reheat jello without ruining its texture is to heat it in a double boiler. This means using a bigger and smaller pot, and boiling water in the big pot. Place the small pot on top, without directly touching the water. Place your jello in the small pot. It will heat up slowly but surely, and the jello will melt.
When completely melted – be sure to stir – the jello is ready to go into any mold you want.
Jello can easily be reset
If your jello hasn’t set, it’s likely because there isn’t enough gelatin in it. No problem, simply bloom a bit more gelatin in warm water, and have it on standby until the jello melts.
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When the jellow is fully melted, transfer the bloomed gelatin into the jello, and stir to get an even mixture. You may need to add more color or flavor, since you’re thinning out the original, in a way.
Then simply tip the jello into the mold you want, and allow it to set. if everything is properly melted and you’ve stirred the mixture enough, there shouldn’t be any differences in texture.
Can you microwave jello ?
You can microwave jello but we don’t recommend it. Microwaves are notoriously uneven heaters, so you will easily end up with jello that is close to boiling in one part, and just warm in another.
To get around this, work in 30 second intervals, and take the jello out to stir each time. Even when it’s not really melted, stir it a little. It helps if you chop it into little cubes. This way there’s less surface to melt.
Again, be sure to work with short intervals and lots of stirring.
Never actively boil jello or gelatin
We say you should never boil or simmer jello, and here’s why. Jello is a stabilized protein product, made from collagen. It’s derived from animal parts like skin, hooves, tendons, and so on. It’s fairly delicate, and it’s not pure collagen but rather derived from it.
Further boiling it will get you a product that will not set, because it breaks up the bonds between the proteins.
Jello can be rubbery at the bottom as it dries out, if it’s been sitting too long. It could also be because you did not melt the gelatin well enough, so now some gelatin crystals are set at the bottom of the jello (heavier crystals).
To get around this, reheat your jello as we discussed, stir it very well, then reset into the mold you like.
Will jello set at room temperature ?
Jello can set at room temperature, but not as well as it would set in the fridge. If you did not use enough gelatin, or have too much liquid in your mixture, it will not set completely and may ooze a little.
So it’s always a much better idea to let your jello set somewhere very cold, like the fridge. Or, if you have one, a cold pantry that stays around 5 C/ 40 F.
Can I use the freezer to set my jello ?
Yes, you can use the freezer to give your jello a head start, but you have to time it right. Leave it in the freezer for too long and it will freeze over. The problem with this is that ice crystals may form, leading to an uneven texture.
The best method, if you still want the freezer, is to keep it in there for about 30 minutes, and then let it sit in the fridge overnight. Any ice crystals will likely not have enough time to form seep inside the jello, maybe just on the top.
If you have really small jello containers, don’t leave them as much in the freezer. For small batcher 10 minutes is enough, then the fridge.
Read Also: Can You Reheat Food In Styrofoam ?
Does jello dissolve in cold water ?
No, jello will not dissolve in cold water because it needs a bit of heat to fully break down and bloom. It needs at least 40 C/104 F to start to break down and dissolve in water. It’s also why you can’t thin down an already set jello with cold water, it needs to be hot water (not boiling).
An important piece of advice: if you want to stabilize your whipped cream with gelatin be careful. You need the jello to be lukewarm and runny. Make sure it is unflavored. Whip the cream to soft peaks, so when the beaters go up to little peaks form in the cream, and they fold over gently.
Keep your mixer on low, and gently pour the gelatin in a thin stream, like for Italian meringue. Keep mixing until all the gelatin is incorporated, then continue mixing until you get stiff peaks. That means when the beaters go up the peaks don’t fold over.
If you were to pour in the gelatin all at once, you’d get some really nasty lumps. We’ve been there, and we had to remove each and every lump and would up with a whipped cream that wasn’t even stabilized. So, do yourself a favor and pour it in a thin stream, making sure it’s not hot. If it’s hot, you risk getting lumps.
All in all, jello is easily reheated and reset if that’s what you’re looking for. Make sure you don’t bring the jello to a boil and everything will be fine. Hopefully your dessert will end up stable and beautiful, just the way you want it.