With a traditional recipe in hand I quickly set about getting it happening. Step 1: Is just a matter of cutting them in half, covering with water plus a squeeze of lemon juice & simmering till just soft. Easy! My next nifty trick is to carefully place the softened c’apples/juicey bits into a clean pre washed rice cloth bag sitting in a conical sieve, to drain overnight- Because the bag has a zip I can keep them quite contained. Next day I pour the juice into my saucepan & add 1/3 the total amount of sugar to liquid plus a few gooseberries out of my garden, to up the pectin content. (due to skipping out on the sugar) VERY slowly I bring it to the boil. Now because I’m not following the recipe anymore (equal sugar:liquid) I have to be careful not to over caramelise the syrup. I’ve reduced the temperature to low, skimming frequently until it hits a light gel point. It takes a few hours & reduces the finished volume considerably but the finished jelly has a lovely tangy acidity not masked by sugar. A generous 2 capfuls of pure rosewater is added plus a lil dollop of pomegranate molasses to increase the astringency..then my jelly hits the jar..
Next day I spread the first of my crab apple jelly on toast, TOTAL YUM, I am converted big time!!
With Autumn nearly over so is my preserving.. YAH! Thank goodness it must almost be time for my annual Winter holiday- Lets hope it’s a lot more relaxing than last year!!