Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

RECIPE: Spiced blackberry and apple jelly

PUBLISHED: 09:50 23 August 2017 | UPDATED: 09:59 23 August 2017

Spiced blackberry and apple jelly by Marshford Organic Foods.

Spiced blackberry and apple jelly by Marshford Organic Foods.


Vanessa Ebdon, from Marshford Organic Foods in Northam, shares her seasonal recipe for a spiced blackberry and apple jelly.

The weather this August has been particularly unseasonal and has taken its toll on various crops.

The early apples looked good – until an unexpected gale blew them off the tree, and many of the blackberries and other soft fruits have been ruined by the rain.

Happily, this recipe is a really good way to use imperfect fruit as it is made from the juice and the finished jelly does not include the whole fruit.

I have added a few spice notes, just to give a hint of savoury flavour – this is a great relish to serve with cheese or a cold platter. Its also great to add a spoonful to a stew or casserole at the end of the cooking time, or to use as a glaze - the jelly just melts and leaves a lovely shine.

These quantities make about 3 x 350g jars, but its easy to double up if you want to make more. Its always nice to have home made preserves to give away at Christmas, or any other time come to that!


550g blackberries

550g apples

550ml water

½ teaspoon fennel seeds

5cm stick of cinnamon

25g ginger root

½ red chilli

natural cane sugar


1. Wash the blackberries, drain and remove any mouldy bits.

2. Remove the stalks from the apples.Chop roughly leaving the skin and cores. Put them in a saucepan with the water. Chop the ginger and the chilli and add them to the pan with the fennel seeds and the cinnamon stick. Cover the pan and put on a low heat. Simmer for five minutes, then add the blackberries. Lightly mash the contents of the pan. Simmer for 15 minutes and then turn off the heat and leave to cool slightly.

3. Put the straining bag in boiling water to sterilize it for five minutes and then stretch it over a bowl that is big enough to contain all the juice. Pour the contents of the saucepan into it and gather up the corners, tying them together and suspend the bag over the bowl. If your bag has loops it is easy to hook it up on a cupbord over your worktop. Leave to drain. Resist the urge to squeeze it as it will ruin the clarity of the finished jelly.

4. When the bag has stopped dripping, measure the amount of liquid you have.It should be between 750ml and 1 litre. Calculate the amount of sugar required on a 4:3 ratio liquid to sugar, for example, 800mls fruit juice needs 600g of sugar.

5. Rinse jars and place on a baking tray with a tea towel underneath. Fill with cold water, cover with tea-towel and place in an oven at 130ºC for 15 minutes.

6. Return the juice to the washed saucepan and add the sugar, stirring to dissolve. Boil rapidly, skimming the scum off as it forms, until the liquid has reduced. To test for setting, place a teaspoon of the liquid on a small plate and leave for a few minutes to cool. It should be firm and jelly like.

7. When setting point has been reached, pour into the glass jars and seal.

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 18:55

A road it completely blocked after a crash involving two vehicles near Georgeham.

Read more
Yesterday, 18:30

Police were called to a multi-vehicle road collision near Barnstaple this evening (Tuesday).

Read more
Yesterday, 16:32

Emergency services are working to free an elderly woman from a car after a crash at Westacott Road in Whiddon Valley, Barnstaple, this afternoon (Tuesday).

Read more
Yesterday, 15:36

A dental nurse from Braunton is heading out to Africa to volunteer onboard a hospital ship providing emergency dental care to people in desperate need of treatment.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:35

A Bideford man is hoping to break the world record for the longest non-stop bass-playing session.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:43

Bideford Library will no longer be moving into The Burton – and the search is on for a new alternative site.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:00

A new headteacher has been appointed for Pilton Community College.

Read more
Mon, 18:33

The A399 near Barnstaple has been blocked after a crash involving two vehicles.

Read more
Mon, 17:21

Bratton Fleming Village Stores is settling into its new home thanks to a huge effort from the community.

Read more
Mon, 14:57

Will you be buying a EuroMillions ticket for tomorrow night’s draw? If so, you could be in with a chance at a £141million jackpot.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 6°C

min temp: 3°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications