There is nothing like homemade jelly. The intensity of flavour of the berries come bursting through and makes for a perfect dessert on a hot summer’s day.
Red Berry Jelly
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes
Setting time: 6 hours or overnight
250g(9 oz) strawberries (about 2 cups)
170g(6 oz) raspberries (1½ cups)
115g(4 oz) redcurrants (¾ cup)
140g(5 oz) caster/superfine sugar (⅔ cup)
5sheets fine leaf gelatine OR
1½sachets of powdered gelatine
You will also need a 1 litre (4 cup) jelly mould or six individual glass dessert dishes.
Wash and pat dry the fruit. If the strawberries are large, cut them in half. Remove the stalks from the redcurrants by gently running the tines of a fork down the stalks.
Put the fruit in a medium sized pan along with the sugar, lemon juice, and 540 ml (18 fl oz) (2¼ cups) cold water. Heat gently, stirring until the sugar has dissolved and the liquid is beginning to bubble. Now put a lid on the pan and let the fruit continue to cook gently until it has become very soft, about 5 minutes.
If using leaf gelatine prepare it now. Place the leaves in a bowl of cold water, snapping them in half to fit if necessary. Leave for 5 minutes to become very soft.
Now strain the fruit mixture through a large, fine sieve into a bowl. Press the fruit through the sieve, using a wooden spoon, to extract as much juice from the fruit as possible.
If using powdered gelatine, stir the contents of 1½ sachets in ⅓ cup of cold water then add ⅓ cup of the hot fruit juice and stir until the gelatine has completely dissolved, about 2 minutes.
Either lift the softened gelatine leaves from the water, squeezing out the water, and add to the fruit juice. Or stir in the dissolved powdered gelatine. Stir until the gelatine has completely dissolved into the fruit juice, about 2 minutes. Keep stirring until you are sure the gelatine has dissolved, otherwise, when the fruit juice sets, there will be little grains of solid gelatine in it.
Pour the jelly into the jelly mould or individual glass dishes and leave to cool. Cover and refrigerate overnight to set.
To turn out the jelly mould, dip it halfway in a large bowl of hand hot water for about 5 seconds. Then place a flat serving plate on top and turn out the jelly. Shake for a couple of seconds until you hear the jelly loosening, then lift the mould away.
Can be served with single/table cream or dollops of whipped whipping cream/whipping or heavy cream and extra fresh raspberries.
This is a really special jelly recipe where real redcurrant jelly is crammed with blackberries, raspberries, and redcurrants and then smothered with more fresh fruit in a raspberry coulis. Just pour a little cream on top and you have very sophisticated jelly.
Summer Fruited Jelly
Preparation times: 35 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes
Setting time: at least 6 hours
2½sheets fine leaf gelatine OR
1sachet powdered gelatine
450g(1 lb) redcurrants (3 cups)
225g(8 oz) caster/white sugar (1 cup + 2 tbsp)
140g(5 oz) blackberries (1 cup)
300g(10½ oz) raspberries (2½ cups)
Double/whipping or heavy cream.
You will also need 4 × 175 ml (6 fl oz) (¾ cup) mini pudding moulds. Alternatively, you can make them in one large jelly mould as shown in the photograph.
First soften the gelatine.
If using leaf gelatine, place the leaves in a bowl of cold water, snapping them in half to fit if necessary, and leave for 5 minutes to become very soft.
If using powdered gelatine, stir the contents of 1 sachet into ¼ cup of cold water then add ¼ cup of boiling water and stir until the gelatine has completely dissolved, about 2 minutes.
Now mix 300 g (10½ oz) (2 cups) of the redcurrants, 200 g (7 oz) (1 cup) of the sugar, and 90 ml (3 fl oz) (⅓ cup) water in a medium-sized pan. Slowly bring the water to the boil and then simmer briskly, uncovered, for 3 minutes to cook the redcurrants. Strain the mixture into a jug through a plastic sieve, pushing the juices through with the back of a spoon.
If using leaf gelatine, squeeze out the excess liquid and then stir it into the hot redcurrant juice.
If using the powdered gelatine, stir the dissolved gelatine into the hot redcurrant juice.
Now continue stirring until the gelatine has completely dissolved and then leave until the mixture is just warm.
Meanwhile mix the remaining redcurrants with the blackberries and 200 g (7 oz) (1½ cups) of the raspberries. Fill the moulds almost to the top with the fruit. You will have some fruit left over which will be used for garnishing.
Fill each mould to the top with the jelly and then leave to cool completely. Cover with cling film/wrap and refrigerate to set for at least 6 hours.
Meanwhile you can purée the remaining raspberries in a food processor or blender along with the remaining sugar and 3 tablespoons of water.
Strain the coulis through a sieve into a bowl to remove the pips and then add the left-over fruit and stir to coat.
When the jellies are set, remove them from their moulds by dipping the bottom of each one in boiling water for 5–10 seconds. Turn them out immediately onto four serving plates. Spoon the coulis and the fruit around the jellies and serve with cream.
Real orange jelly is simple to make and full of flavour. All you need is orange juice, a lemon, a little sugar and gelatine. Decorate it with slices of orange and serve for a refreshing dessert.
Real Orange Jelly
Preparation time: About 20–25 minutes
Standing time: 30 minutes
Refrigeration time: At least 5 hours or overnight
140ml(5 fl oz) water
50g(2 oz) caster sugar/fine white sugar
4–5 oranges, OR
1orange plus 425 ml (15 fl oz) orange juice from a carton, without pulp
powdered gelatine, enough to set 565 ml (20 fl oz) of liquid
orange slices to decorate
565ml(1 pint) (20 fl oz) jelly mould
Thinly pare the rind from the lemon and one orange and place in a saucepan with the water and sugar. Over a medium-low heat stir to dissolve the sugar and then bring to the boil. Remove from the heat, cover and leave to infuse for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, squeeze the juice from the lemon into a large bowl.
If using the whole oranges, squeeze out the juice until there is 425 ml (15 fl oz) and add to the lemon juice. If using a carton of orange juice, add 425ml/15 fl oz to the lemon juice.
Strain the sugar syrup into the bowl and stir into the juices.
Dissolve the gelatine. Follow the instructions on the packet of the gelatine to set 20 fl oz of liquid. Then thoroughly stir the gelatine into the orange mixture until evenly distributed.
Wet the jelly mould, pour in the jelly and refrigerate for at least 5 hours, or overnight, until firmly set.
To serve, dip the jelly mould up to the rim in very hot water for 5 seconds, place a flat serving plate on top of the mould, then invert the mould and plate together. Holding both plate and mould firmly together, give the jelly a good shake to free it from the mould. Remove the mould, then decorate the jelly with oranges slices.