Hemgjord rödvinbärsgelé (homemade redcurrant jelly) is a popular accompaniment to game, lamb, grilled chicken or stew and for serving with cheese and biscuits. It is also a very useful addition to many sauces (see our recipe for venison with blackberries, for instance) giving them extra depth of flavour. Most commercial redcurrant jellies are too sweet and lacking in flavour whereas this recipe produces a well-flavoured jelly with a gorgeous redcurrant colour and yet it is quick and easy to make!
• If you don’t mind a cloudy jelly, you can push the mixture through the sieve or jelly bag in step 3, but otherwise leave it to drain slowly by itself.
• Store in small jars and keep them in the fridge once opened.
• Small jars of homemade redcurrant jelly make nice little stocking fillers for Christmas, if you can be bothered thinking ahead to Christmas in July! Just stick some Christmas wrapping paper over the lid and that is one present done!
500g *(5 cups)* redcurrants
100 ml (½ cup) water
75g **jam sugar per 100 ml of juice obtained
*Do not mix the units!
**12 oz jam sugar per pint of juice obtained (0.6 oz per fl oz!)
1. Rinse the redcurrants and then pick them over and discard any that are bruised. Place the rest, stalks and all, in a preserving pan and add the water.
2. Bring slowly to the boil, stirring regularly and pressing the redcurrants against the sides of the pan to release the juice (or use a potato masher). Boil steadily for about 10 minutes until the fruit is cooked.
3. Tip the whole lot into a jelly bag or a fine-mesh stainless steel sieve over a bowl. Leave to drain for 4 hours or overnight.
4. Measure out the amount of juice collected and then pour it into a preserving pan. Add 75 g per 100 ml (12 oz per pint) of jam sugar to the measured amount of liquid.
5. Place the pan over a gentle heat and cook, stirring frequently, until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to a rapid boil and boil for 6½ minutes (or until setting point* is reached).
6. Cool slightly before pouring into sterilised jars.
7. Cover with a lid and label.
I find 6½ minutes works well for the quantities above, but if you prefer to test for a setting point, place some saucers in a freezer before you start. Start testing every 30 seconds after about 5 minutes. Be sure to remove the pan from the heat completely when you do a test!
Take your saucer from the freezer and place a drop of jelly onto the cold plate. After a few seconds push the jelly with your finger. If the jelly surface wrinkles then it has reached setting point and is ready. If it slides about as a liquid, then it hasn't reached the setting point and should be returned to the heat and boiled for a little bit longer before testing again.
Recipe courtesy of John Duxbury, founder and editor of Swedish Food.