Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Apple Chilli Jelly

My beloved is away and I don't feel like cooking. I think these two things are related. But my downstairs neighbour gave me a bag of beautiful apples from a nearby garden. So, what to do? As I've said before, I'm not all that keen on cooked fruit. Apple pie is my least favourite dessert, with apple crumble a close second. But then a wonderful foodie friend suggested: apple jelly. Not something I'd ever eaten, certainly never cooked, but I like jelly and I thought why not give something new a try? 

Chilli Jam is one of my favourite condiments. It's outstanding with scrambled eggs, or just spread on some toast. I had some gorgeous big red chillies in the fridge so I decided to add some (both fresh and dried flakes) for a bit of kick.

In the spirit of trying new things... This, ladies and gentlemen, is my very first video recipe. So be gentle. 

Things I learned while making this video? 

1. It's impossible to hold a camera while chopping. That would require a third hand.
2. Holding a camera above a simmering pot leads to a steamy lens situation.
3. My cat is very photogenic. And a show off. There are many outtakes of her being cuter than cute.

Apple Chilli Jelly

Cooking apples
Granulated sugar
Large red chillies
Dried chilli flakes

Roughly chop the apples (no need to remove the cores or stems) and put in a pot, covered with water. De-seed and roughly chop the chillies (two or three per kilo of fruit) and add to the apples. Simmer for 30 mins until it's a mush. 

Put a colander in a large pot with a clean teatowel lining it. Pour the mush in. Leave to strain for 3-4 hours. You can speed up this process with a bit of squeezing. You'll end up with a cloudy liquid. Put this in a heavy bottomed pan with 400g of sugar and 1 tsp chilli flakes per 500ml of liquid. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat and skim off any scum from the top. Continue to simmer for 15-20 minutes over a medium low heat. 

Meanwhile, sterilise your jars by boiling for 10 minutes.

The jelly needs to reach 105C/220F to set nicely. To test for the setting point, put a plate in the freezer while the mush is straining. After 10-15 minutes of simmering, put a teaspoon of the jelly on the cold plate and put in back in the freezer for 2 mins. If it solidifies, you're good to go! If not, continue to simmer for another 5 minutes and test again.

Pour into your jars, seal and leave overnight to set.



  1. I found you on the Sophie Dahl website and I'm SO glad I did. Your video is GORGEOUS - gorgeous jelly recipe and gorgeous kitty! Really enjoyed it :)

  2. Thank you so much, that's incredibly sweet of you to say! xx