Saturday, 7 November 2009

Crab-apple jelly

Coming into the kitchen when I woke up this morning I was greeted by the sight of the sunshine glinting through the jars of crab-apple jelly which I made yesterday which I had left to cool down on the kitchen table. They certainly are a wonderful colour, but although the jelly is set, it looks as though it will be quite runny - I think the fruits from our tree, which is the variety "Evereste", may not have as much pectin in as some crab-apples.
It was easy and fun to do and I used a doubled -over piece of muslin, which I wet and then wrung out, instead of a jelly bag - I had checked out the prices of a jelly bag and stand at Lakeland - £18! Halving all the fruit took a bit of time as the crab-apples I used were quite small.
Here is the recipe I used, given to me by my neighbour, Liz:
Crab-apple Jelly
6lb crab-apples
4 pints water
sugar - 1lb to each pint of juice yielded
(note: I used 4.5lbs apples, so I needed only 3 pints water. This quantity yielded 2.75 pints juice to which I added 2.75 lbs sugar.)

1) Wash fruit and cut apples into halves.
2) Put into preserving pan or large heavy-bottomed pan with the water.
3) Bring to boil and then simmer gently for 45mins to an hour. Resist stirring during this time as this can make the jelly cloudy, but be careful the apples don't catch and scorch on the bottom of the pan when bringing to the boil.
4) Strain the pulp through a jelly bag or muslin for at least 2 hours or overnight.
5) Measure the yield of the strained juice and add 1lb sugar to each pint juice.
6) In the pan, bring to the boil and boil until setting point is reached - between 5 and 20 mins depending on amount of pectin in the fruit.
7) Fill pre-washed and sterilised jars while the jars are still warm and put on lids.
8) Enjoy and/or give to friends!

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