Red Currant Jelly

Red Currant Jelly - 3

Continuing with canning week today, I was trying to remember what prompted me to start canning, but I just couldn’t come up with one particular thing…I think there are several contributing factors. I had never canned with my mom, but the stories she’d tell me of her red-stained hands from peeling an endless line of tomatoes for sauce and canning them with my grandma made me long for a simpler time (and some of that tomato sauce). During fall 2009, I read a few blog posts here and there of people making their own jams and jellies as gifts for Christmas, and I thought that was a wonderful idea. I had a big enough stock pot, so I decided that I’d attempt making a few jars, just to go along with our Christmas gifts that year. Even without any extra equipment, I found it very satisfying standing over pots of bubbling fruit, especially the apple-cinnamon jam, since it made the whole house smell like apple pie. Of course, there was also the joy of hearing the “ping” as each jar sealed, and the sense of accomplishment that I had just preserved my own food. And of course, the look on everyone’s faces when I gave them homemade jam for Christmas!

Red Currant Jelly - 1

I didn’t realize it at the time, but I got the canning bug, and I got it bad. The next month, I bought a home canning kit and signed up for the Tigress Can Jam, a year-long canning group I participated in via my blog. With a new theme each month to get me learning how to preserve different things, it was kind of like canning boot camp…and everything I canned, I gave away as birthday and Christmas gifts, much to the gift receivers’ delight. Now, here I am, just as addicted to putting up as ever. In addition to gifts, I’m beginning to look to canning as a way to preserve the summer and to help us eat locally year round. It’s an exciting journey – one that I hope you’ll join in on, too!

  • 5 cups red currant juice
  • 5 cups sugar
  • 3 1/2 Tbsp pectin

Rinse the red currants and place them in a large pot. Add just enough water so that the currants are covered. Cook them over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they become soft. Pass them through a food mill, discarding the stems and seeds.

Red Currant Jelly - 2

For each cup of juice, add a cup of sugar to the pot. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a rolling boil. If you’re a little worried about the jelly setting like I was, add in the pectin. Let boil for five minutes.

Prepare your canning supplies. Sterilize the canning jars by running them in almost boiling water for several minutes. Boil a few cups of water in a small saucepan for the lids.

Turn off the heat and skim off any foam. Ladle the jelly into the hot jars, leaving 1/4″ headspace. Place the jars back into the canner and process (boil) for 10 minutes. Remove the canner lid and let them process 5 more minutes before removing the jars. The seals should suck down (you’ll hear a popping noise as they do). Let sit 24 hours for the jelly to set. Makes 5-6 eight-ounce jars.

17 Responses to “Red Currant Jelly”

  1. 1 Jenna Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    Glad to see your site is back up and running! And your canning recipes are as enticing as ever.

  2. 2 Maria Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    I’ve never had red currant jelly! Now I really want to try it!

  3. 3 Amber | Bluebonnets & Brownies Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 2:50 pm

    I have been eating this on my toast for the last few days, so I can pretty much attest to how amazing it is!

  4. 4 Maris (In Good Taste) Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    This looks do delicious! I have been fearful of home canning but you make it look easy!

  5. 5 Barbara | Creative Culinary Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    I remember when I started canning. A friend and I had gone to pick berries and I assumed I would freeze all of mine. She asked me to spend the day canning with her…and that was it. Over 30 years ago! I haven’t done it so much lately since my girls are now both on their own but sorely tempted by posts like this. Your red currant jam is spectacularly beautiful!

  6. 6 Chris Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    Your story is very inspiring. It makes me want to can!

  7. 7 Sean Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    I’m the founder/moderator for Punk Domestics (www.punkdomestics.com), a community site for those of use obsessed with, er, interested in DIY food. It’s sort of like Tastespotting, but specific to the niche. I’d love for you to submit this to the site. Good stuff!

  8. 8 commonplaceiris Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    Wish I could get my hands on enough red currants (and time) to try this. I’ve never actually tried redcurrant jelly on toast, it was always for eating with roast lamb when I was growing up.

  9. 9 Kitty Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    You sterilize jars by boiling them for ten minutes, adding one minute of boiling time for every 1000 feet after you get 1000 feet above sea level. Holding them in nearly boiling water is just for getting them hot enough to not suffer a temperature shock and crack when filling them with hot product. Since you are processing this jelly for ten minutes the jars do not need to be sterilized. You jars of jelly look so pretty. It is great that you are canning.

  10. 10 Casey@Good. Food. Stories. Says:
    August 11th, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    Can you believe I’ve never eaten red currant jelly? I KNOW – what am I missing??

  11. 11 Sarah Says:
    August 12th, 2011 at 11:21 am

    You can also run your jars through the dishwasher (mine has a top-rack only setting) and leave them in the warm washer until you are ready to use them. Your jelly looks so pretty, and doesn’t “red currant jelly” sound so decadent?! It reminds me of the book “Anne of Green Gables.”

  12. 12 Angela Watts Says:
    August 12th, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    Now thats some pretty jam…been oogling recipes for currants, but I’m not sure if I will find any in my neck of the woods. Red currant jelly is definitely what people dream of when they think homemade jelly. Pretty and jewel toned and yummy.

  13. 13 DessertForTwo Says:
    August 12th, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    I got the canning bug last summer with all my extra cucumbers and tomatoes pouring in from the garden. The only thing that holds me back is the heat required to process everything. It seems like the stove just heats up the house too much on a summer day. But come winter, when I open one of those cans of diced tomatoes or garlic dill pickles, I’m so happy I did it.

    I would love to taste this jam! Never had red currant before :)

  14. 14 Shaina Says:
    August 12th, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    I love how bright the jelly is. Currants are so pretty.

  15. 15 Nancy @SensitivePantry Says:
    August 13th, 2011 at 9:55 am

    The currants are such a beautiful color. I’ve only had dried currants. Would love to taste your currant jelly!

  16. 16 Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction Says:
    August 15th, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    I have never had currants (that I’m aware of)… Can you believe that? I love the pretty red color of this jelly, though. Want to give it a try!!

  17. 17 Jamie | My Baking Addiction Says:
    August 18th, 2011 at 9:35 am

    I have never tried Red Currant jelly, but the color is so spectacular it may just compel me to pick up a jar.

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