What to do with crab apples? Here’s a simple crab apple jelly recipe. It’s easy and very pretty.
So many people throw out crab apples or put them in the compost bin. But you can simply simmer juiced apples and sugar to make delicious jelly!
The bright red jelly also makes a festive gift, especially during holiday season.
Optional: Add a cinnamon stick to each jar before you seal it!
Wash and coarsely chop or just quarter the apples and put them in a large pot with enough water to cover them. (Don’t bother to peel or core the crabapples.)
Cover and simmer crab apples in water until soft (about 20 to 25 minutes). Mash the whole lot with a big spoon or potato masher.
Spoon the mixture into a colander lined with cheesecloth set over a large bowl or pot, and let the juice drain out, stirring the pulp to extract as much juice as possible.
Measure the juice (which is easy if you drain it into a pot with measurements marked on the side) and prepare ¾ cup sugar for every cup of juice but don’t add yet.
Simmer juice in a stainless steel pot for 5 minutes, stirring often. Skim froth, then add sugar. Simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until jelly thickens and drops from a spoon in sheets (about 210 to 220 degrees F).
(You can use a candy thermometer OR until a small amount placed on a cold plate and put into the freezer turns to gel.)
Skim foam and pour jelly into dry but hot sterilized jars to within ½ inch of top if sealing with paraffin (use ⅛ inch of wax) or to within ⅛ inch of top for two-piece metal lids.
Process in a hot water bath OR store in the fridge.