I saw blackberries on the allotment and thought what a pain, what do i do with these. I’d stupidly forgotten the wonderful marriage of blackberries and apples. This recipe is from River Cottage Preserves book, it works perfectly, creating a mellow fruity jelly, so perfect on toast.
- 1kg of apples (windfalls or any apples are fine for this recipe)
- 1kg of blackberries
- water (see method below)
- around 900g white granulated sugar (the amount depends on the volume of juice extracted from the simmered, drained fruit. Ipt/500ml of juice to 1lb/454gms of sugar.
- Wash the apples, cut out bruised bits and chop roughly. There is no need to peel and core the apples.
- Pick over the blackberries, reject any that are tatty and remove any stalks.
- Place fruit in a large deep heavy bottomed saucepan, or preserving pan. Add water to cover (1.2litres)
- Bring slowly to the boil and simmer very gently until all the fruit is soft and squishy. This takes about 15 minutes, depending on how ripe the fruit is.
- Pour the cooked fruit into a jelly bag or muslin cloth and leave to drip into a bowl overnight.
- The next day, measure the extracted fruit juice and pour it into a deep heavy bottomed saucepan. Add 454g/1lb of white granulated sugar for each 570ml/1 pt of juice or 600ml juice to 450g sugar. Try to avoid squeezing the jelly bag as this can make the jelly cloudy.
- Heat the juice and sugar gently, stirring from time to time. Make sure that that all the sugar has dissolved before bringing the liquid slowly to the boil. Continue to boil hard for about 5-10 minutes before testing for a set. If the jelly hasn’t set, continue to boil and teat for a set at three minute intervals. Occasionally a jelly or jam will set very quickly, when this occurs you will notice that the sides of the pan have a coating of jelly and the back of the spoon is coated too. If you spot this, remove the pan from the heat immediately and test for set.
- When jelly has reached setting point pour into warm sterilised jars using a funnel and ladle. (How do I sterilise jars? See tips and tricks below).
- Cover immediately with plastic lined screw top lids or cellophane tops secured with a rubber band.
- Label when cold and store in a cool, dark place. Away from damp.