Recipe To Make Apple Jelly from Wild CrabApples
As I live in the North West United States,I noticed there is an abundance of Wild Crabapple Trees or Bushs as some call them.
As the economy is in bad shape,there is a lot of canning going on in the rural areas where people can grow crops.So I decided to try my luck at canning Wild Crabapples.
I have dozens of trees surrounding me full of these little apples,and they are now ripe,so I decided to pick a bunch and make jelly.
When you pick Crabapples,you have to be carefull not to get stuck with the
1 inch spines the limbs prodce to protect the apples.
The apples grow in clusters of 2 to 10 and are on a stem,so all you need to do is grab the stem and pull the apples off.
The apples are the size of a small marble,so it takes 4 pounds to make a batch of jelly,which is 7 pints.
The ripe apple is purple with three seeds inside.
You will place the apples in a kettle with enough water to boil them.
After they come to a boil, you put them through a strainer and then you smash
the apples and strain them again.
Now you place the juice back on the burner and stir in 1 package of Pectin,
Bring to boil,then add 7 cups of sugar stirring until the juice boils.
Boil for 2 minutes.
Take off burner and ladle juice in clean pint fruit jars.
Skim foam off top of jelly
Clean rims of jars and place seals on.
Screw rings down tight to keep water out.
Place jars in water bath.
Make sure jars are submerged under 1 inch of water.
Bring water to boil and boil for 5 minutes.
Remove jars and place on towel.
You should see a depression in the middle of seal,when jar seals properly.
If the jar doesn't seal ,redo or use the jelly first.
Let jars set for 24 hours,then place in a dark cool area for storage.
For large apples I recommend buying an Apple Peeler,which is much faster then a knife.
Makes 7 Pints...
Wild Crab Apple
Wild Crab Apple (Malus coronaria, Mill.)
A low, bushy tree, with thorny angular twigs, rarely 30 feet
high. Bark reddish brown, scaly. Wood heavy, fine grained,
weak, reddish brown. Buds small, blunt, bright red.
Leaves ovate or triangular, 3 to 4 inches long, half as broad,
velvety beneath, blunt pointed, sharply serrate,
often lobed near base; petioles 1 1/2 to 2 inches long.
Flowers May to June, after the leaves, in 5 to 6 flowered
umbels, perfect, white to deep pink, spicy, fragrant 1 to 2
inches across. Fruit flattened, yellow, 1 inch in diameter;
flesh hard, sour. September. Preferred habitat, upland
woods, in moist, rich soil. Distribution, Ontario to Minnesota;
south along Alleghanies to Alabama; Nebraska to eastern
Texas; New York to South Carolina. Uses: An ornamental,
flowering tree. Fruit made into jellies and preserves.
Wood used for levers, tool handles, etc.
The wild, sweet-scented crab apple! The bare mention of its
name is enough to make the heart leap up, though spring
be months away, and barriers of brick hem us in. In the
corner of the back pasture stands a clump of these trees,
huddled together like cattle. Their flat, matted tops reach out
sidewise until the stubby limbs of neighbouring trees meet.
lt would not occur to anyone to call them handsome trees.
But wait! The twigs silver over with young foliage, then coral
buds appear, thickly sprinkling the green leaves.
Now all their asperity is softened, and a great burst of
rose-coloured bloom overspreads the treetops and fills the
air with perfume. It is not mere sweetness, but an exquisite;
spicy, stimulating fragrance that belongs only to wild
crab-apple flowers. Linnaeus probably never saw more than
dried specimen, but he named this tree most Worthily,
coronaria, "fit for crowns and garlands."
Break off an armful of these blossoming twigs and take
them home. They will never be missed. Be thankful that
your friends in distant parts of the country may share your
pleasure, for though this particular species does not cover
the whole United States, yet there is a wild crab apple for
In the fall the tree is covered with hard little yellow apples.
They have a delightful fragrance, but they are neither sweet
nor mellow. Take a few home and make them into jelly.
Then you will understand why the early settlers gathered
them for winter use. The jelly has a wild tang in it, an
indescribable piquancy of flavour as different from common
apple jelly as the flowers are in their way more charming
than ordinary apple blossoms. It is the rare gamy taste of
a primitive apple.
Well-meaning horticulturists have tried what they could do
toward domesticating this Malus coronaria. The effort has
not been a success. The fruit remains acerb and hard; the
tree declines to be "ameliorated" for the good of mankind.
Isn't it, after all, a gratuitous office? Do we not need our wild
crab apple just as it is, as much as we need more kinds of
orchard trees? How spirited and fine is its resistance!
It seems as if this wayward beauty of our woodside thickets
considered that the best way to serve mankind was to keep
inviolate those charms that set it apart from other trees and
make its remotest haunt the Mecca of eager pilgrims every
The wild crab apple is not a tree to plant by itself in park
or garden. Plant it in companies on the edge of woods, or
in obscure and ugly fence corners, where there is a
background, or where, at least, each tree can lose its
individuality in the mass. Now, go away and let them alone.
They do not need mulching nor pruning. Let them gang
their ain gait, and in a few years you will have a
crab-apple thicket. You will also have succeeded in
bringing home with these trees something of the spirit
of the wild woods where you found them
Wild Crab Apple Jelly
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