If you love lychee, pineapple and jelly, this lychee jelly is perfect for you!
This easy fruit jelly recipe is made using canned fruits and konnyaku jelly and shaped in a pretty bundt cake tin. It is almost like a cake and makes a great jelly cake too!
Konnyaku Lychee Jelly
In case you are wondering what konnyaku jelly is, it is the Japanese term for a plant-based jelly made from the plant Konjac. You can read all about it here on Wikipedia. It is often used in a similar way as the agar jelly, but the texture of konnyaku jelly is a lot chewier.
The first time I tried konnyaku jelly was at a Japanese restaurant and the chewy texture of the jelly really gained my liking to this jelly.
I have used konnyaku jelly many times now, and particularly love to make it with lychees. I have also made the jelly with other fruits, you can check out my konnyaku pineapple and nata jelly here.
How to Make the Pineapple Lychee Jelly
- Konnyaku jelly powder (Japanese jelly/agar powder)
- Canned lychee + syrup
- Canned pineapple
- Yellow food color (optional)
Preparing the bundt mold
- The first step in making any jellies is to prepare the containers or molds. This is because the jelly will start to set as it cools down, so it is important that the molds are ready to pour the jelly solution into. I used a Nordic Ware bundt cake tin to make this pineapple lychee jelly.
Cooking the jelly
- Start by mixing the konnyaku jelly powder with sugar until both are well combined. Mixing helps the jelly powder to be spread out, and this will avoid it from forming clumps when added to the liquid solution in the next steps.
- Separate the canned pineapple cubes from the syrup. Discard the syrup. Leave the fruits aside. Next, separate the lychee fruits from the syrup in its can. Pour the syrup into a measuring cup.
- Add water to the lychee syrup until it reaches 950ml.
- Pour the liquid into a pot and turn on the heat. Slowly add the combined sugar and konnyaku powder into the pot. Stir to combine, until the sugar and the jelly powder are completely dissolved.
Assembling the pineapple lychee jelly
- Start by arranging a layer of the cubed pineapples in a circular row at the bottom of the bundt tin. Scoop the jelly solution with a ladle and gently pour it onto the arranged fruit. Fill the jelly until the fruits are almost two-thirds submerged in the jelly. The reason for not submerging the fruits completely is to make sure they are connected to the next layer of jelly. If there is nothing to connect the layers, the layers will separate as you remove the jelly from the mold and when you cut it.
- Let the jelly set (test by touching it lightly, if it is firm to the touch, it is ready) and arrange another layer of the fruit cubes.
- Add some yellow food color into the remaining jelly solution in the pot. Scoop the colored jelly into the bundt tin gently. Fill until the second layer of cubed pineapples is submerged halfway. Let the jelly set. To speed the process, place the tin in a larger tray filled with iced water. That way, the jelly sets faster. Also, using a ladle to spoon the jelly gently into the tin helps avoid causing a hole in the jelly layer underneath.
- Once the jelly is set, arrange the lychee fruits onto the jelly.
- Spoon all the remaining jelly solution into the tin. The lychee should be completed covered in jelly.
- Let the jelly chill and set. Use a jam knife or a plastic spatula to gently loosen the sides without poking the knife in too much or cutting the sides of the jelly. Turn it out onto a serving plate, shaking or tapping the tin lightly to allow the jelly to loosen out. Garnish with rosemary leaves or the remaining fruits if you wish.
Do you need to line the jelly mold?
- Jelly molds typically do not require any lining. Simply pour the liquid jelly solution into the molds and let them set.
- Silicone molds are easier to work with for jellies as they can be twisted and pushed to get the jellies out. Metal molds tend to be harder, but you can use a jam knife, a thin spatula or even toothpicks to loosen the jellies from the molds before tapping them out.
Why is it important to mix the jelly powder with sugar before adding to the liquids?
- Mixing the jelly with sugar helps avoid the jelly powder from becoming clumpy as it is added to the liquid. I have done it once, and it took me a very long time to get the jelly clumps to dissolve.
- Even then, there were still some tiny clumps left. So, this is an important step to remember when making this jelly.
Can konnyaku jelly be substituted with agar-agar jelly powder?
- Yes, you can. Replace it in the exact same quantity and use the amount of liquid as indicated on the back of the jelly powder packet. If there is no amount given, use the amount in this recipe.
How long does it take for the jelly to set completely?
- This would depend on the mold into which the lychee jelly is poured. Smaller, shallower molds would tend to set faster as compared to larger, deeper ones.
- To test if the jelly is set, press it down lightly with your finger. If it is firm to the touch, the jelly is ready.
How long can you keep the lychee jelly?
- This jelly lasts for a good 2 to 3 days, however, it must be kept chilled in the fridge. Keep it in a covered container to prevent it from drying out in the fridge.
- Sometimes, you will notice excess liquid in the jelly container after a day or two. This is normal, the jelly tends to release some liquid as you keep it longer. Having said that, the jelly is still as good to eat, and can be safely consumed.
Is this jelly safe for children and the old?
- Konnyaku jelly or Japanese jelly is of a chewy texture as compared to normal agar-agar jelly. Because of this, is it harder to cut and chew. Hence, when serving children and old people (who are unable to chew the jelly well), it is advisable to cut the jelly into small pieces to avoid the risk of them swallowing it in large pieces.
Can you increase the amount of fruits in the jelly?
- Yes, you certainly can. I did not use up all the lychee and pineapple cubes from the can. I used some as a garnish when serving the jelly.
- You can add as many fruits as you wish, but do take note that too many fruits in the jelly can cause the jelly to break easily when transferring out of the cake pan.
- You can also use different types of fruits for this jelly, like in my pineapple and nata jelly here.
Can you omit the syrup from the canned lychees?
- Yes, you can. Simply replace the lychee syrup with water and add an extra 100g sugar for the recipe measurement below. Increase or decrease accordingly if you scale the recipe.
Is this jelly suitable for vegans and vegetarians?
- Yes. Konnyaku or Japanese jelly is of a plant origin and is absolutely vegan. It’s a great dessert choice for both vegetarians and vegans.
Can you use fresh fruits instead of canned fruits?
- Yes, you can. As for the canned lychee syrup, replace it with water and increase the sugar in the recipe to 250g.
- If the jelly package comes with instructions on the amount of water to use, it is best to follow the instructions on the package. Mine indicated 950ml hence the total liquid (lychee sugar syrup + water) I used in making the jelly was 950ml.
Lychee jelly in pretty bundt shape
Pineapple Lychee Jelly Recipe
Here’s the full printable version of my pineapple lychee jelly recipe:
Pineapple Lychee Jelly
- 10 g konnyaku jelly powder (Japanese Jelly/Agar)
- 150 g granulated sugar
- 550 g lychees in syrup (approximate can size)
- 550 g pineapple cubes in syrup (approximate can size)
- Yellow food coloring
- Prepare the bundt mold by washing and patting it dry. Set it aside.
- Combine the konnyaku powder and granulated sugar in a small bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
- Drain the pineapple cubes. Discard the syrup and set the fruits aside.
- Drain the lychee syrup from the can into a measuring cup. Add water to the syrup until it reaches 950ml. Pour the measured liquid into a medium sized pot.
- Add the sugar-jelly powder into the pot and cook it until the sugar and jelly is all dissolved. This should take approximately 10 minutes over low heat. Turn off the heat.
- To assemble the pineapple lychee jelly, begin by arranging a layer of pineapple cubes at the bottom of the tin.
- Spoon a layer of jelly into the bundt tin until the fruits are about two-thirds submerged in the jelly.
- Let the jelly set, for about 3 to 4 minutes. To speed up the setting process, place the bundt tin in a larger tray filled with cold water.
- While waiting for the jelly to set, add some yellow food coloring to the remaining jelly in the pot.
- Once the first layer of the jelly is set, arrange another layer of pineapple cubes on the jelly. This is the final layer of pineapples. At this stage, you will not be using up all the pineapple cubes. You can use the remaining as a garnish or use them for other desserts.
- Gently pour a layer of the yellow jelly until the 2nd layer of pineapple cubes are halfway submerged in the jelly solution.
- Let the jelly set again. Once set, arrange the lychee fruits on it. At this stage, you will not be using up all the lychees in the can. You can reserve the balance for garnish or use them for other desserts.
- Carefully spoon on the remaining jelly into the mold. Transfer the mold into the refrigerator and let the jelly set completely (for about 4 hours) before serving.
- Turn the jelly out onto a serving plate. Add more pineapple cubes and lychees in the center if you wish. Serve the pineapple lychee jelly chill.
And that’s that. My super yummy pineapple lychee jelly for you!
Konnyaku Lychee Jelly
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