Remember the crab apples? I’m making apple jelly today with my first pan full. Make this in small batches as it can catch and burn so easily that it’s best not to make a wadge and it’s difficult to strain a large amount without a muslin cloth the size of a parachute.
Step 1. Pick crab apples from the hedgerows – I have never seen these for sale. Do not attempt to eat them, the bitterness will take the skin off your mouth.
Step 2. Cut in half and take out stalks, wash if you are inclined however, I think boiling the b’jesus out of them will kill any bugs.
Step 3. Place in large heavy preserving pan (Which I haven’t got so just use any old large saucepan) and cover in water, plenty of water as they are full of pectin and you don’t want solid rubber like apple jelly.
Step 4. Boil and then simmer until completely soft and then mash with potato masher.
Pour into a jelly making sieving device. I bought this in Plymouth Pannier market a few years ago and get it out every year. My mum used to use muslin, with the corners tied to an old chair that was upturned on the table. In fact, before she moved onto muslin she used to use an old pair of Pretty Polly tights!
Leave to drip for hours on end, in fact you can leave it over night but don’t squeeze it. More to come later.