Crab Apple jelly has a lovely reddish glow which is at odds with the golden yellow color of the fruits when picked.
The tangy jelly absorbs herbs and spices wonderfully and is a great base; Rosemary or Mint for Lamb, Juniper for Venison, Verbena or Lemon balm to serve with poached pears, Chili and Lemon zest for Chicken – just add the herbs half and hour before decanting.
- 1 kg Crab apples
- Juice of 1 lemon
- A Variable amount of Caster sugar.
Wash and pick over apples to remove the stem and leaves. Put them in to a large pan or preserving pan and just cover with water.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes, until the fruit is very soft. Mash well and strain through a jelly bag or muslin-lined nylon sieve set over a large bowl. Don’t press the fruit or squeeze the bag and leave it overnight. When the dripping has stopped, carefully measure the resulting liquid and return it to the preserving pan along with 450g caster sugar for each 600ml of liquid. Stir well over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved fully. Increase the heat and boil rapidly for 10 minutes before testing for a set. Setting point is 105c (220F). If necessary, boil for a further minute and test again and continue testing at one minute intervals, until the jelly has reached setting point.
Remove the pan from the heat, Skim off any scum and allow to cool briefly. Carefully pour into hot, sterilized jars. Seal the jars and allow the jelly to cool completely before labeling and storing.