Crab apples, have you ever tried them???
As it's September and the fruits are ready to be picked I've decided to make this my "September food quest" lens!
Crab apple trees are commonly grown as ornamental plants and the fruits are not widely used. I have found a couple of trees in the garden when I moved in and I remembered one of my colleague talking about crab apple jelly.
Determined not to let the fruits going to waste I searched for a good recipe to put them to good use and found this very simple recipe to make a fantastic crab apple jelly.
Crab apple jelly is a great accompaniment for any meat but my favorite way of enjoying it is with cheese.
Hope you enjoy my recipe and serving suggestions!
To carry out this recipe you'll need a jelly strainer
Making crab apple jelly
Peel the crab apples, discard any bruised parts, cover with water and bring to the boil.
Cook for about half an hour or until the fruits are tender.
Strain the cooked fruits using a jelly strainer and collect all the liquid into a pan. It is important not to squeeze the strainer, instead leave it overnight.
When you've collected enough liquid, measure it in a jar and add 7 parts of sugar to 10 parts liquid.
Melt the sugar in the liquid, add lemon juice (the juice of half a lemon for every 500 g of sugar) and bring to the boil.
Boil for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally and removing the froth. After 45 minutes check for set. To do this I put a spoon in the freezer fro 10 minutes and put a bit of the mixture on it. The jelly is ready to set if it solidifies on the chilled spoon.
Pour into sterilized jars when hot, seal and store in a cool dry place.
...or Buy It Online!
Make your own variation
...and serving suggestions
You can of course experiment with your jelly, adding herbs or spices.
I have made a few variation by adding herbs to the jelly when canning. So far I've made a crab apple and mint jelly, crab apple and rosemary and a spicy crab apple and chillies.
Here is what I use the jelly as accompaniment to:
Cooked meat (especially pork)
Cold meat platters (ham, salami etc)
I love crab apple jelly on top of cheese and crackers and as accompaniment to cheese fouffle. Well, anything cheese really!
Cooking with wild fruits
I love foraging for wild (and most importantly free) ingredients.
Here're some helpful books to teach you how to choose ingredients to forage and turn them into delicious dishes!