This is a lovely, simple hawthorn jelly recipe that you can have with cheese or meats. Make it now and you’ll be in time for giving it away as Christmas presents.
If your celebrating is more earth-centric, then you’ll be in time for the return of the sun on December 21st.
Enjoy this autumnal hawthorn jelly recipe.
Find a nice Hawthorn bush (Crataegus monogyna) laden with lovely red haws.
Pick 1.5lbs of hawthorn berries (haws). This will make 1 jar of hawthorn jelly, so obviously if you need more jars, pick more fruit.
Make sure that you remove the stalks. A good way is to simply roll a clump of berries (stalks and all) in between your hands, and you’ll find the haws just roll off. It’s certainly easier than individually pulling off each stalk.
Now wash your haws and then drain.
Put the haws into a heavy saucepan, and cover with 1.5 pints of water.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 1 hour. Mash the berries with a potato masher every 20 minutes.
Now strain the mixture over night using some muslin, or as I did, a jelly bag.
To keep the jelly clear do not squeeze the jelly bag, just let the juice drip. If you’re not bothered whether your hawthorn jelly is clear or not then squeeze away.
For every 1 pint of juice measure out 1lb of sugar.
Now squeeze the juice of 1 lemon.
Mix the sugar and lemon juice into a heavy saucepan along with the hawthorn juice. Bring the mixture to the boil, stirring continuously until the sugar has dissolved.
Now rapid boil for 10 minutes until …
… the jelly has reached setting point.
Now skim off any foam from the top of the jelly liquid, and pour into sterilised, warm jars and screw on the lids.
Eat at will. There is no need to leave the hawthorn jelly for a month or so.
Robin is a forager and self-taught ethnobotanist. He specialises in wild edible plants and has been running foraging courses throughout the UK since 2008. He travels extensively documenting and recording the traditional and local uses of wild food plants in indigenous cultures.