Heaven Scent - Cranberry and Juniper Jelly

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I am very excited about this new departure for me, a regular guest post on Sarah Raven's blog Garlic and Sapphire. My name is Jude and I write the blog A Trifle Rushed.

I have been following this blog for the last few months and love the fact that it features seasonal gardening and cooking. So it may be a surprise to you that the first of Sarah's recipes I am featuring is from her beautiful book, Complete Christmas Food and Flowers.  

I know, it has gone, but if like me you over-stocked on cranberries, and have some lurking in the freezer, awaiting next Christmas,  then this is the perfect recipe for you to try. I love simple recipes, without too many complicated ingredients, so  this particular recipe suits me perfectly. I had some cranberries in the freezer, half a bottle of red wine, juniper berries and sugar, indeed all that I required to follow the recipe for Cranberry and Juniper Jelly, which you can find on Page 26 of the book, or on the Sarah Raven websitein the seasonal recipes section.

Cranberries ready for preserving

I boiled the cranberries with the juniper berries and then strained the fruit. The following day I warmed the liquid, adding the sugar and some wine.

Making cranberry jelly

Stirring the cranberries, juniper, wine and sugar, it smells heavenly, perfect to make on a cold winter's day. I tested for a set, and was able to bottle one and a half jars of jewel like jelly.

Making cranberry jelly

The jelly is the perfect accompaniment to a traditional baked ham...

Cranberry and Juniper Jelly with Baked Ham

The jelly is not just for Christmas, although it was delicious with Turkey and Ham.  I have used it with game too.  Perfect with birds such as Pheasant or Partridge.   I decided to stir a spoonful into my Venison Casserole.  I just can't tell you how much it enhanced the flavour of the meal.  The cranberries added a fruity dimension to the meat and wine rich gravy, whilst the juniper added an extra depth to the couple of juniper berries I always include in my casserole.

If you haven't attempted a jelly before then please do try this wonderful recipe, the instructions are clear and it is truly delectable.

Thanks for reading!