Yo, Dear Reader, this is a twin of the Apple Jelly Recipe, they’re very similar, this uses the natural pectin in both fruits to allow you to just use granulated sugar, but the apples will likely be the main source, if you’re playing around with other fruits you can just use jam sugar, either completely or as an addition, you’ll learn to play with ratios, I did, Dear Reader, the raspberry took mostly jam sugar and granulated topped it up. These are for selling so I’ll make sure they’re the best they can be, but the best part of small batches of jam made with various fruits harvested at different places and times means each is wholly unique. If you take your time and follow the steps you can’t go too wrong and any failure can be a teaching moment.
The Raspberry Variation.
The only thing here that might be new is the microwave sterilising, an Uncle told me about it, an avid and practiced Jam maker, and it has stood me well in my years of makin jams. It ensure the jams are piping hot and freshly cleaned, but gets them done faster than heating an oven. Remember to check for cracks at each stage, I clean these several times, when I take them out I check, wash and check, rinse and wet and then heat and recheck before adding jam or jelly. Everything should be hot. Be mindful of how hot boiling jam is too, you’ll get burned once or twice and never want to have that happen in the extreme. Best advice is to have everything ready, hot water to easily rinse out the pots is handy too. You work fast with jam and when it’s all sealed up and cooling you may hear the seals popping when the vacuum is formed. That’s what keeps it fresh. I see people take a jar from me and open it, if you do that then refrigerate it, the seal is broken and the jam will not stay fresh. I also see people tilting fresh jars and no, don’t, just don’t. The pectin forms overnight, but can take a few days and some jams and jellies can be a looser set, some firm up fully after weeks. Respect the art that goes into it and enjoy it is my advice, Dear Reader.
A good day’s effort.
So, this is my last batch, I have grown so, so much this year, Dear Reader, where one fruit failed another made up for it tenfold. The birds have been dropping seeds for me and I now have a rasp[berry plant and a blackberry plant, both wild, I have ideas about those, but that’s for another time. It’ll be unlikely that I’ll see more apples, how this person had so many is a mystery because everyone is struggling to find any, so I can be free for a while. I’ll carry on composting everything leftover and add it to the bushes again as I have year after year. It pays off, Dear Reader and likely makes a lot of people, myself included, happy. Oh, in talking about happy people, I gave jam to the kids, they’re great kids, and it was two melted together, not ideal for selling, but a delicious way to use up the leftovers if you haven’t enough to fill a jar. You can stack and refrigerate, if they aren’t sealed then storing unrefrigerated wouldn’t be safe, or melt them down as one jam. As I say it’s not perfect, but useful and the kids won’t mind as it won’t last the day likely! I’ll be back again soon, Dear Reader, until then stay safe and take care.
1100g Blackberries, Fresh or Frozen
500g Cooking/Windfall Apples
Granulated Sugar As Needed
Optional: Teaspoon of Butter
Place a plate or saucer in the freezer before starting.
Use strongly flavoured fruits.
1. Cut up the Apples without Coring or Peeling and add to a large pot with the Blackberries, add water and then cover and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the Apples and Blackberries are mush.
2. Remove from the heat and mash using a potato masher until everything has been reduced to pulp. Pour the mixture into a straining bag and let drip overnight.
3. Weigh the juice and add it and equal weight in Sugar to a large, deep pot, cook on a gentle simmer, do not boil, until the Sugar has dissolved.
4. Add the Butter and bring to a rolling boil. Boil for five minutes and test for set (see Below)
(Alternatively alternate stirring clockwise and counter clockwise while boiling to help break up the scum.)
Drop a little of the mixture on a chilled plate and run a finger down the middle, if the Jelly stays divided then it’s ready, if it rolls back then boil again for a minute and retest until desired set has been achieved.
5. Wet Clean Jars and heat in the microwave for one to two minutes until dry. While they sterilise soak the lids in boiling water for a minute or two. Pour the warm Jelly into the prepared Jars while they’re hot then screw on lids and let rest at room temperature overnight.
6. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate once opened.