Crabapple Jelly | Recipe

November 27, 2016
Hello friends!
This is not my pantry, my own pantry isn't as attractive as this so I have used a free image from Pixabay. Seriously though: Goals.

If you didn't see it already, catch up on my post regarding Foraging for Crabapples here.
If you already have your crabapples then continue reading!
Crabapple jelly is a wonderful addition to a roast dinner, it tastes great with roast chicken or pork! It can also be eaten with cheese and crackers, there are just many, many uses for it and it's so easy to make!
To make this recipe you'll need a preserve pan and a jam strainer.


  • Crabapples (as many as you can forage!)
  • Sugar (depending on how many crabapples)
  • water
  • Juice of 1 lemon


  1. Wash your crabapples well and remove any debris (IE leaves and extra long stems). There is no need to chop, peel or core the crabapples.
  2. Put the whole crabapples into a preserve pan and fill with enough water to just cover the fruits. Bring to the boil and then simmer until the fruit is soft (usually 20-30 minutes depending on when your fruit is harvested).
  3. Allow to cool for a little while and then put the whole mixture into a jam strainer over a bowl. Leave to strain overnight and don't be tempted to squeeze the fruit or press down on it as this leads to cloudy jelly!
  4. The next day, measure how much liquid you've collected in your bowl. Pour back into your preserve pan and add 450g sugar for every 600ml juice collected. Also add your lemon juice. Stir the sugar in well and bring the whole mixture to a full rolling boil for approx. 40 minutes, skimming froth off the top as you go.
  5. Test for a set (if it's not quite ready then boil for a bit longer). When the jelly has reached setting point, pour into hot, sterilised jars and label.
Just a quick note, if this is your first time making Crabapple jelly and you get a bit concerned about the colour, don't worry, it turns pink during the last boiling stage!

I hope you enjoy creating this recipe, it makes a great Christmas present/birthday present and stores for a long time!

I'd love to see your pictures!

Wild Harvest | Crabapples

November 25, 2016
Crabapples are so cute to look at! Is that a really girly thing to say? They're like regular apples, only smaller. Which is why I really enjoy foraging for them and using them in preserves.

Where can you find Crabapple Trees?

Wild Crabapple trees (Malus sylvestris) can be found pretty much throughout all of Europe. One of the interesting thing about Crabapple trees is that it's quite normal to find only one of them in a woodland, they don't tend to grow together. They like really rich, heavy soil and can be found in woodlands and hedgerows.

How to Identify a Crabapple tree

The crabapple tree is very gnarled and uneven in appearance. Whereas some woodland trees have a nice balloon shape to them, the crabapple has bits and bobs bulging all over the place. It has very rough bark which can be brownish/greyish/browny-greyish in colour. The leaves are oval shaped with small teeth around the edge and appear very glossy. The tree produces colourful, sweet smelling blossom in spring and small fruits in the autumn. Crabapples come in many different varieties and can be a range of different colours.

When to harvest Crabapples

There are many, many varieties of Crabapple and each one will harvest differently according to the variety and also where it is. In general they will be ready to harvest in Autumn. There are a few ways in which you test the fruit for ripeness. You can squeeze it, if the fruit is rock solid then it needs another couple of weeks but if it has a little bit of give then it is ripe. Or, you can cut the fruit open and check the seeds. If the seeds are brown then the fruit is ripe.

What to do with Crabapples

Crabapples being very small are extremely sour raw straight off the tree and there are very few people who can eat them raw. They are much better used in jams, jellies and liqueurs. 

Remember to forage responsibly.

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