Rosehip and Apple Jelly recipe – Sunshine in a Jar

Rosehip*and Apple ** Jelly recipe


•    2 lb/900g rosehips
•    4 lb/1800g of apples. I like to use windfalls as they are usually free (good if you have  or know someone with an apple tree).  However, whatever apples you have is okay
•    Zest of half a lemon (optional)
•    Juice of half a lemon which is approximately  one tablespoon of juice if you don’t have a fresh lemon to hand (again optional)
•    Sugar –  for very pint (600ml ) of strained juice you need to use 1lb(454g) of white granulated sugar 1:1 ration
•    I was told that this recipe will make approximately 14 half pound jars, however,  I have never got that much out of it, so I suggest having jars available… but you may not use them .
Now the original recipe I found suggested cooking the rosehips and the apples separately as rosehips take longer to soften.. You can do that if you wish; I don’t bother and cook them both together.


1.    Top and tail the Rosehips – this can be a bit of a palaver, but well worth it – bit like shelling peas, make yourself comfy and remove stalks from the rosehips and place in a large pan.

**NB –don’t use an iron or aluminium pan as this strips away the vitamin C –  I use a large stainless steel stock pot. **

2.    Wash and core your apples, cut out any bad bits, – DONT PEEL  and chop roughly  

3.    Add to hips and add water so that it just covers.  Add the lemon rind if you want.  Bring to the boil and then turn the heat down so it is simmer gently .  Cook until the hips are soft, which is approx 60 mins, however that is can longer if the hips are quite firm.   Keep an eye on the pan and if need be you can add more water if it is taking a long time.

4.    When soft, mash the hips up, you can use a fork if you want to, but I find a potato masher works well.. Mash it up till you have a large mush.

5.    While they are cooking sterilise your muslin jam bag.  A muslin or Jelly bag can be one you have bought specific from a shop, or you can buy a piece of muslin, it will need to be approx 18inches square.  You can also use a piece of cheesecloth, or an old thin tea towel or even a pillowcase. To sterilise it you need to iron it on an hot iron (don’t burn it though) .

6.    You then need to fasten it to something  so that you can let the juice drip through – you can do this by either  fastening it to a large clean and sterilised bucket (boiling water will sterilise, but if you worried you can use the stuff you get for sterilising babies bottles) .  Some people use a plastic sieve, which they place over the bucket and then line with the muslin.  OR you can do it the old fashioned way – which I do and tile the corners of the muslin – or use elastic bands  as I do, over the legs of an upturned stool . Place a sterilised bowl underneath to catch the drips.

*NB this is not my actual stool, just a pic, but you get the idea *

7.    When the cooked fruit is soft and you have given it a good mashing then pour the cooked fruit into the sterilised muslin. Cover it with a clean tea towel ( to protect against flies, dust etc) and leave it to drip over night – or for 12 hours.  – Go and have a drink, watch TV, sleep etc.. you get the idea- you just have to leave it!

8.    **Whatever you do NOT be tempted to squeeze it or force the juice through as that will make you jelly cloudy ***

9.    12 hours later – or Next Day – Okay now you are ready to actually  make the Jelly – but before you start, take 2 saucers and pop them in the freezer.  These will be used later to test if the Jelly is set –  and using two means that if necessary you will have a spare cold sauced if need be.

10.    Prepare your jars, – we save jam jars all the year, but if you want something more fancy you can buy quite cheaply some lovely jars from Dunelm Mills as well as some of the other supermarkets.   Wash and rinse the glass jars and place upside down in a cold oven.  Turn on and set temp to 160c (140c fan-assisted), Gas mark 2. 

When your oven has reached the right temp, then turn the oven off.   The jars will stay warm for quite a while. ** A note about lids here – all metal lids can go rusty, but the majority of jars now have plastic lined lids, – to sterilise these boil them for approx 5 minutes in water.  If you are using the bought specialised jars follow their instructions.

11.    Not to actually make the Jelly – Take the juice you have and put it into a deep heavy bottomed saucepan. Remember the ration 1:1, so for every pint of juice (600mls) you need to add 1lb/454g of white granulated sugar for each 1pt/570ml of juice.

12.    Add the lemon juice.

13.    Gently heat the juice and sugar, stirring from time to time, making sure that that all the sugar has dissolved before bringing it slowly to the boil.

14.    One you have it boiling – do not rush this bit- boil for about 10 minutes before testing for a set.

15.    Remove any scum that forms of the top of the boiling jelly juice.

16.    After 10 minutes, take one of the cold saucers you have prepared earlier out of the freezer, and take a teaspoon of the boiling jelly and return the saucer to the fridge to cool for approx two minutes. The jelly has set when you run your finger through it and leave a crinkly track mark. If after the two minutes, the jelly seems to be too liquid, continue to boil the jelly. Test it again every few minutes until you have the right set.  This is why have a least 2 saucers in the freezer helps, put more saucers in the freezer if you are at all worried, that you may not get this the first time round. 

**Note that Rosehip jelly does get firmer after a few months of storage.

17.    Apparently,  tossing in a nugget of butter towards the end will reduce the frothing that can occur, I have not done this myself, as I am lactose intolerant- but if you want you can try it – it is recommended in quite a few books and web sites

18.    So when the Jelly has reached its setting point, pour the jelly into the warm sterilised jars.  You can do this by using a funnel and/or a ladle.

19.    Once in the jars, cover immediately with the plastic lined screw top lids and/ or  waxed disks and cellophane tops. I do like to put a waxed disk on top of the jelly before securing the plastic lines screw lids.  If you want it to look fancy you can the top with a circle of fabric, secured with a rubber band and then cover with ribbon or string.

20.    Label when cold and store in a cool, dark place, away from damp.

21.    Oh and Enjoy!! – it’s a jar of sunshine, full of Vit C; it’s wonderful on a slice of bread or even better on your morning toast, –  though I  also have it in my Porridge

*Rosehips foraged from ‘our back garden’

**Apples were windfalls from a friend’s apple tree and were also ‘free’ – well bartered -as I give her a jar of the jelly as she supplied the apples!

©2011 Shullie H Porter.  All Rights Reserved.*


About Wælcyrie

I'm a 50 plus [ how time flies] multifaceted, oxymoron, who can never really make her mind up. A Follow of the Hekate, a Wælcyrie who walks in the liminal spaces, between and betwix. a Medium, ( I'll talk to anyone dead or alive), a Writer of short stories, a disorganised Blogger, Cake Baker, Jam Maker; Mother Grandmother and Wife.
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5 Responses to Rosehip and Apple Jelly recipe – Sunshine in a Jar

  1. Pingback: What to do with a glut of rosehips? | amarathonnotasprint

  2. Reblogged this on Tales From The Under Gardener's Lodge and commented:

    As it is that time of year again – I shall be making a few jars in the next few days – some for myself andsome for friends and family …look out for more recipies

  3. Ambrosius says:

    Very nice. I’ve never made jelly but this recipe is really inviting: makes quite a lot though. In my house folks don’t really have jelly often so one jar lasts months (alas, the jelly is often only used in conjunction with, you guessed it, peanut better). In any case, I still want to try this so I’ll just have to make a smaller batch. Thanks for posting this. Blessings.

    • Thank you for your kind words. It keeps pretty well, and we are gradually making our way through them. My OH eats it with peanut butter too.

      I gave a few jars away to work colleagues and I am also planning on giving a few jars away for Yule presents… some sunshine in the darkest time.

  4. Pingback: ‘That time of year thou mayst in me behold…’* | Tales From The Under Gardener's Lodge

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