Saturday, 15 October 2011

Apple jelly

Last year our apple trees were laden with heavy big apples, this year one of the trees is completely resting and had not a single apple, the other two had apples, but not enough to appeal to all neighbours to come and help themselves. But there's still enough for me to cook lovely crumbles, chutney and jellies.

This recipe was written by a crafts forum friend a few years ago, and I have been making it ever since, with different variations, adding herbs and spices.

"Makes 7-8 x 225g jars

2 kg Crab Apples or other sharp Apples
Around 900g Granulated Sugar

Pick over the fruit removing leaves & stalks, wash then cut out any bruised bits.
Don’t peel or core the apples just chop them roughly. Place all the prepared fruit in a saucepan with 1.2 litres of water. Bring gently to simmering point and simmer until all the fruit is soft and pulpy. Remove from the heat.
Have a scalded jelly bag or muslin cloth (or thin tea towel) ready and turn the contents of the pan into it. Leave to drip overnight. I don’t care about my jelly being cloudy, so I give the cloth a good squeeze the next day when it’s cold to get more juice out.
Measure the juice and for every 600 ml juice use 450g sugar.
Put the juice into a large pan and bring slowly to the boil.
My note: it is at this stage that I start to experiment with add-ons. This year I made 3 different batches: first with rosemary, second with the Greek basil and oregano, and the third one with the homegrown chili and a bit of cinnamon. Once the juice's infused enough with the flavours, I remove the herbs (but not the specks of finely chopped chili) and the cinnamon, and only then add sugar.

Add the sugar as it just comes to boiling point and keep stirring until all the sugar has dissolved. Then boil rapidly, without stirring, for about 10 minutes until setting point is reached. Pot and seal as quickly as possible.

I warm jam jars in the oven while the jam is cooking to ensure that they are warm and sterilised. Rather than shop bought wax circles and cellophane, I cover the jars while they are still hot with pieces of cling film cut to size."

A blogging colleague What Kate baked has set an Autumnal challenge to create a recipe using Autumnal riches and blog about it.
Though technically my recipe has nothing to do with baking, it is certainly autumnal, so I am going to ask Kate if she would consider my recipe. Come and join the fun!


  1. I agree its very autumnal. I think its a beautiful jelly. I am so sad that my apple tree this year has not produced as the Scottish winds early this year pretty much killed of all the blossoming flowers, so no home grown apples for me and now homemade apple jams and jellies.

  2. Thank you, Shaheen. Our apples are eaters, but they are quite sour, so I prefer to cook them, they make superb crumbles and baked apples too.
    I love English apples, there are so many varieties, and I love buying local ones at the farmers' market.
    Whenever there is a cold coming from the East, my friends tell me it is from Siberia, as if I am personally responsible. :) and I have never been to Siberia anyway, but I guess for them all Russian locations are pretty much the same.