rowan and apple jelly recipe

A beautifully clear jelly made from rowan berries and apple. This is my favourite jelly. It’s smoky and tart, perfect with venison or any game and lovely smeared on corn on the cob. It’s also brilliant with Wensleydale cheese. It is the most beautiful colour and should be totally clear, like looking through coral-coloured Venetian glass.

Makes 12 small jars (75ml-100ml)

  • 2kg rowan berries
  • 1½ kg apples
  • Granulated sugar – 1 pint of juice to 1 pint of sugar


Pick the berries from the stalks and wash out any earwigs. Cut the apples into chunks. Put the rowans and apples in a pan and just cover with cold water. Simmer them until they’re pulpy. This takes 30-40 minutes.

Strain through a jelly bag overnight. Do not squeeze the jelly bag but allow it to drip naturally. If squeezed it will make the jelly cloudy.

Measure the juice in a measuring jug and add the same amount of sugar by bulk.

Put a saucer in the fridge to help test for the setting point later. Heat until the sugar has dissolved, then boil briskly to setting point. This usually takes about 20 minutes, but test after 10 minutes: place a teaspoonful of jam on the cool saucer from the fridge – when cool it should wrinkle when you push it with your finger (you could also use a jam thermometer here – when it reaches 104-105°C, the mixture will set).

Remove any scum from the top and pour into warm, sterilised jars and seal. You can eat this straight away, but it will keep unopened for up to a year.

rowan and apple jelly