Blackberry Jelly

Merrilees Parker makes a simple flavour-packed preserve from these glistening hedgerow berries
By Merrilees Parker
Blackberry Jelly
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 3 5 jars
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes plus overnight straining
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

  • 1.3 kg blackberries
  • 2 large cooking apples, cored and diced
  • 450 ml water
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • preserving or granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp crème de cassis, optional

Method

1. Sterilise a jelly bag or tea towel by boiling in water for 2-3 minutes. Wring well and leave to cool. Arrange the jelly bag on a stand or up-turned stool with a large bowl beneath, ready for the fruit juice to drip through.

2. Place the blackberries, apple, water and lemon juice in a preserving or large, heavy based saucepan.

3. Bring to the boil, then simmer over a low heat for 20-25 minutes or until the fruit is soft.

4. Tip the fruit and juice into the jelly bag and leave to drip for 8 hours or until all the juice has been released. This will remove the pips and pulp from the jelly.

5. Prepare the jam jars by washing in hot soapy water and leaving to dry and warm in an oven - 130C/gas ½ for 10-15 minutes.

6. While the jars are sterilising, make the jelly. Measure the juice - for every 600ml weigh 450g sugar. Put the juice and sugar back into the clean preserving pan, heat over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, add the crème de cassis, if using. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until setting point is reached. You can test for setting by putting a teaspoonful of the jelly onto a cold plate if the jam forms a skin and doesnt flow back together when you pull your finger through it, it is set.

7. Skim away any scum from the top of the jelly and fill the jam jars to the brim. Cover, seal and label. Store in a cool, dark place until required.

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