Elderberry Crab Apple Jelly with Lemon
We’ve discovered a field bursting with elderberry bushes; each bush more ladled down with fruit than the next. It’s amazing to see so many growing in one spot. Elderberries are a shrub native to North America and they seem to grow abundantly in wet, swampy, sunny areas. An environment Muskoka provides with easy.
RECIPE FOR ELDERBERRY CRAB APPLE JELLY with Lemon:
- 4lbs elderberries; washed and stemmed
- 1 1/2lbs crab apples; washed and quartered
- 1 large lemon or 2 small lemons; washed, thinly sliced, and quartered
- 1 small lemon equalling 4 tbsps lemon juice
- 1 cup water to boil with the elderberries and crab apples
- 3/4 cup water to poach lemons
- 2 cups sugar; divided
- 2 cups maple syrup (if you don’t have maple syrup replace with 2 cups sugar)
- Place elderberries, crab apples, and water in a stainless steel preserving and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until apples are soft (approximately 10-15 minutes). Using the back of a wooden spoon mash the berries and apples to extract as much juice as possible.
- Place cooked mixture in a moistened jelly bag to collect the juice. This mixture should yield between 31/2-4 cups juice.
- Meanwhile wash, slice, and quarter 1 large lemon or 2 small lemons. Place lemon slices in a stainless steel preserving pan with 3/4 cup water and 1/2 cup sugar. Bring to a boil. Continue to boil lemons until the slices become translucent (approximately 15 minutes). Add more water if necessary so they do not stick to the bottom.
- Prepare for water bath canning.
- In a large stainless steel saucepan combine elderberry juice, poached lemons (including the sugary water), lemon juice, sugar, and maple syrup. Bring to a boil and boil until the set point is reached; approximately 15-20 minutes. Note: you can use both the frozen spoon test and/or check the temperature to determine the set. The jelly will set at 220F. We do both.
- Remove from heat and skim foam if necessary.
- Ladle jelly into hot sterilized jars leaving 1/4″ headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe rims, place lids and screw bands on adjusting so that they are just finger-tip tight. Process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.
- When the time is up turn off the heat and remove lid, wait 5 minutes before removing the jars. Check seals, label, and store.
Put up Total:
- 4 x 250mL regular mouth mason jars
- 1 x 125mL regular mouth mason jar…a tasty sample