Sunday, 13 September 2009

Apple and Rosehip Jelly

I suffered for this one, I really did. The rose thorns ripped my hands to shreds, my right hand was sticky with blood at one point (insert sympathy here) and my clothes were pulled and torn. I have a strange relationship with rose hips, when they're sitting in the hedgerow, glowing brightly, they look so jolly and good for you that it's hard to resist them. Then as soon as I commence picking I curse and vow never to touch them again. I made rose hip syrup last year which is pleasant enough but I find I don't really use syrups so I thought a jelly might be more versatile.

I got this recipe from a book I found in second hand shop, bizarrely enough, in the copper mine on the Great Orme in Llandudno this summer. It's called English with a Difference by Steven Wheeler and was published in 1988. It has some fantastic seasonal recipes as well as some 80's nonsense but seeing as it was written in the 80's I think we can forgive him.

The resulting jelly is pretty and tasty it's hard to put my finger on the taste, I guess something like hibiscus. It's on a par with my lavender jelly I made which was certainly a far less painful process.

Apple and Rosehip Jelly.

3lb crab apples
2lb rose hips
juice of 1 lemon
5 cm cinnamon stick
2 cloves

The original recipe suggests bunging all the fruit in a pan together but I didn't like this method. I'd suggest boiling the hips first til they're soft then give them a bash with a potato masher to break them up a bit, then add the apples and about 2pints of water together with the spices and lemon juice. Cook til the apples break up.

Strain through a jelly bag overnight. To every pint of juice add 1lb sugar, boil til setting point is reached and pot in the usual way.


  1. Can't believe you didn't illustrate with a picture of your blood-drenched hand - far more dramatic and it would serve as a warning to us all.

    Am intrigued by the '80s nonsense' - what form does it take?

  2. Well, I was kind of hoping to entice people to try the recipe rather than turn their stomachs with gore!

    80's nonsense = alarming amounts of cream, fussy, french influenced, twiddly veg, that kind of thing. Though I have to admit I was vegetarian in the 80's so existed mainly on sludge brown 'stuff'.

  3. I think my kids would have been more inclined to try the recipe if they thought they could create horror movie magic...LOL...although not sure they would like the pain!!!!!!