Recipe: Rhubarb and Cranberry Preserve

Our rhubarb, including all the bits of divided crown we planted last year, is doing really well – no doubt helped by all this dreadful RAIN… I made some of our favourite Citrussy Rhubarb Jam (a sort of cross between jam and marmalade) a few weeks ago, but there was plenty more to pick when I fancied doing some preserving yesterday.

One of the downsides of making jam with rhubarb is that it can end up a rather disappointing brown colour, which is a reason, I guess, why recipes for rhubarb and strawberry jam are so common. But of course, strawberries aren’t in season yet, so casting my mind round for other red fruits, I thought of dried cranberries and decided to have a little experiment. Here’s the result – I think you’ll agree the colour is pretty good:

Rhubarb and Cranberry Preserve

The flavour is excellent too – the cranberries are a really good alternative to raisins or sultanas, with a little bit of added extra tang.

Rhubarb and Cranberry Preserve

Ingredients

1 kg fresh rhubarb
900g granulated sugar
200g dried cranberries
100 ml water
grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

Makes about 5 standard size (1lb or 450g) jars of preserve

  • Prepare your jars and lids etc by sterilizing them (see notes).
  • Wash the rhubarb and chop roughly into 2 inch pieces. Put a large, heavy, roomy pan with the sugar, cranberries and the water.
  • Bring VERY slowly to the boil to melt the sugar.
  • When it reaches the boil, turn up the heat and allow to come to a rolling boil, and boil until thickened and the setting point (see notes) is reached, which takes around 20 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon zest and juice
  • Pot immediately in sterilized jars, cover with wax paper circles and screw on the lids tightly whilst the jam is still hot.

Notes:

Sterilizing your jars – the Very Berry method:

  • Wash jars thoroughly in hot soapy water or run them through a dishwasher.
  • Dry in a preheated cool oven (around 160C/ Gas 3), and make sure the jars are hot when you pot up the jam.
  • Soak the lids and any jam funnels or cups/ladles you are going to use to pot the jam in boiling water for at least 10 minutes.

Testing for set:

  • Before you start making your jam, put a couple of saucers or small plates in the freezer.
  • The setting point for jam is 105C /220F – you can use a jam thermometer, or if you don’t have one, keep a close eye on the jam and you will see it start to thicken, and start sticking to your wooden spoon.
  • Take the jam off the heat when you test for setting point – you don’t want to over-boil it.
  • To be really sure, get one of your saucers out of the freezer (mind your hands – it’s cold!) and put a drop of jam on the plate. If it forms a skin and sets as it cools, then you have reached your setting point. If it doesn’t, put your jam back on the boil and test again after a couple of minutes.

I’d love to know how you get on with this recipe if you give it a try. I think it’s delicious – one of the great things about posting recipes is I always get to eat the subject of the photo after I’ve taken the pics..!

 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Recipe: Rhubarb and Cranberry Preserve

  1. Rhubarb is now doing well after the heavy rain and this recipe sounds really delicious and a must try. I love rhubarb and ginger jam so I’m sure I’ll enjoy this.

We always love reading your comments... go ahead, say hello!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s