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Thread: Crab apple won't set

  1. #1
    Fledgling Member
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    Unhappy Crab apple won't set

    Is there any way to redo the jelly syrup that won't set. I've used the recipe one part sugar to one part strained crabapple juice for years. Anybody have any ideas???? Thanks in Advance
    Confuzzed in Alaska

  2. #2
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    Your formula is what I have used for years. Reboil and did you use the sheet test method to watch it jell and take it to the correct temperature. I usually just cook mine for 15 minute full boil and it turns a glossy syrupy. We have had a lot of rain this year maybe the apples have a higher juice content than usual?

  3. #3
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    Dear Karen;
    I used my thermometer to get the temp to 225. I'm not familiar with the sheet method. And yes we had too much rain this year. 47 days without stop. It is a case of " This is the best winter I've ever had this summer" Thank you for the information. I'll retry it..... Soaked in Alaska Annie

  4. #4
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    Sheet method. put 3 plates in the freezer. when you hit 225 put a drop of the jelly on one of the frozen plates tilt the plate and watch as it slide down to the other side. Half way it should wrinkle and slow down. If not cook for a few more minutes and test on the next plate etc. That means it will jell as it cools to room temperature. This is how our grandmothers did it. I have 8 apple trees and the cold wet spring produced not one apple.

  5. #5
    Moderator CM's Avatar
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    Hi alaskadinger,

    Try using 3/4 cup sugar for every cup of crabapple juice. All fruits that require a good amount of water in the cooking take three-fourths of a cup of sugar to every cup of juices. This is true for red raspberies, blackberries, crab apples and cranberries.

    If too much sugar is added, it can prevent jelling by diluting the pectin in the fruit. Also, is it possible that the crabapples that were used were overly ripe? As fruit ripens, pectin converts to an insoluble version (pectic acid) that won't jel.

    Another factor that stops the pectin from jelling is overboiling. Too much water added to hard fruits like crabapples at the start of cooking yields a juice that's thin so it will need a longer cooking period to concentrate it; that may cause the pectin to convert to pectic acid and not jell. Because of this, it's a good idea to grind or coarsely chop hard fruits first.

    You can remake the jelly using pectin if you think that could be the problem. A few more jelling tests to try in addition to the ones that Karen mentioned:

    Pour the boiling syrup from the side of a clean, hot spoon, held horizontally. If the syrup is done, two drops will break simultaneously from the side of the spoon.



    Another test is to take a little of the jelly and drop it onto a cold plate, then draw a line through the center. If the line remains and doesn't run together the jellying point has been reached.

  6. #6
    Do you think some of these solutions would work for the Apple Jelly from Apple Juice recipe I got on Cooks.com? I tried boiling it again, still has not set up? Any ideas what to do next?

  7. #7
    see my reply on the general forum

  8. #8
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    Did you use a low acid apple juice by any chance. The extra boil, sugar and pectin should work. The only other thing would be is to add real apples and strain again.

  9. #9
    Dear Forum,
    I am replying to the closest thread to my question.

    Last night I made some crab apple jelly. I started with 1.3kg of small hard bitter green unripe crab apples, picked yesterday in the UK. I was following a recipe for crab apple jelly by Darina Allen of Ballymaloe cooking school. I halved the apples and heated them up with 500ml of water. It took about 30 mins of simmering to make apple pulp. I then put this into a muslin to drip and strain.

    However very little liquid came out. After another 30 mins the dripping stopped completely. It seemed like the pulp was already gelling (naturally this was all before adding any sugar). I re-boiled about 500ml of water and returned to the muslin over night. But again the pulp appeared gelled.

    I should add that I had by now doubled the water requested in the recipe and the recipe did not mention a second boil. I ended up with about 400ml of very viscous apple juice, which made 3 jars of lovely jelly in the usual way (+sage for flavour). I did make sure the water content was reduced again.

    Is this low yield normal? How do you stop juice gelling in the muslin? Was I right to re-boil? Any help appreciated.

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