Rowan berries can be found in towns, cities and half way up mountains – wherever you live there are jelly berries just around the corner.
The season is changing and the fruits and berries are ripening. With the beautiful summer we have had some species have produced a bumper crop. Rowan is one of them and here we have a very easy recipe for Rowan jelly that tastes great with savoury dishes like cold meats, pies or cheese.
The recipe is below along with tips on identification and some photos from the weekends courses – Cooking with fire and 1 day foraging.
Rowan Sorbus aucuparia
This small deciduous tree grows up to 15m tall. It is often planted in urban areas and can be found in parks, around carparks, swimming pools etc. It’s natural home is high on moorland – other name ‘Mountain Ash’. We recommend that you collect berries from places that are not too close to roads, because of pollution.
If you are unfamiliar with the tree check the leaves. They are made up of 10-14 small leaflets arranged opposite each other along a central leaf rib. The one on the end gives the leaf a point. They have a fine saw tooth edge and the whole leaf is approximately 10-15cm long. After blossoming in spring the tree produces orange/red berries in late summer and autumn.
Rowan and Apple jelly
- 1kg (2lb 4 oz) rowan berries, taken off their stems and washed
- 500g (1lb 2 oz) sour apples washed and cut into quarters
- granulated sugar
Put the rowan berries and apple pieces in a big heavy bottomed pan and cover with water. Cook gently for 40 minutes. After this time the water will be red and the fruit very soft. Strain the fruit through a fine sieve or jelly bag reserving the liquid. Do not be tempted to squash the fruit it will result in a cloudy jelly. Measure the liquid, and put it in to a clean pan. For every 550mls of liquid add 450g sugar. Bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil until it reaches setting point and pour into sterilized jars. – the jelly will set at around 104°C, check it by putting a bit onto a very cold plate and seeing if it wrinkles when you push your finger through it. Put lids on the jars as soon as soon as they are cool enough to handle.
here are some photographs of this weekends courses.