The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Redcurrant jelly recipe to add a sparkle to your meals

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 5 comments

Redcurrant jelly recipe to add a sparkle to your meals

Who needs to wear rubies when you can decorate your table with jewels such as these? Redcurrant jelly is the king of jellies. All jellies shine but redcurrant jelly glitters. It enhances the food that it’s served with. If you’re only going to make one jelly in your life, make redcurrant. You’ll never regret it. I’m pretty sure that my mother used make this when I was growing up. I remember that redcurrant jelly was the star turn of Sunday roast lamb. I’ve loved it since I can remember Mum hauling out the heavy roasting pan from the...

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Zingy lemon and lime marmalade recipe for grownups

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 9 comments

Zingy lemon and lime marmalade recipe for grownups

This is a zingy marmalade that can be made at any time of year – a sweet gel with tangy strands of lemon and lime. Be warned it’s very moreish – whilst Danny was on a conference call this morning I slathered it on slice after slice of toast. A jar of this superb marmalade would be a perfect in a Christmas hamper or just produced with a flourish as a present for someone very special. A few jars kept at home on a larder shelf would give you a taste of summery freshness during those short dark winter days. My mum used to mention the...

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Beetroot recipes from The Chicken Lady

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 18 comments

Beetroot recipes from The Chicken Lady

Both The Chicken Lady and I are growing beetroot on our allotments. TCL has started to harvest hers already and raced home with a vast bunch last week. She was planning to transform them into beetroot delicacies. She mentioned pickled beets, a Crank’s beetroot salad and an intriguing raspberry and beetroot jelly.  When I sowed my beetroot seed I had no plans beyond beetroot in a white sauce or a cold beetroot salad with yoghurt. Both delicious but not nearly as exotic as raspberry and beetroot jelly. Yesterday I drifted onto her blog...

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Bubba’s quick Seville orange marmalade recipe using a pressure cooker

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 17 comments

Bubba’s quick Seville orange marmalade recipe using a pressure cooker

  When The Chicken Lady tweeted that she was going to try out a pressure cooker marmalade recipe I was a teeny bit dubious that it could match the flavour of old fashioned marmalade lovingly stirred on the stove for hours. But I was wrong. I was surprised to discover that it tasted pretty good, sweet but with that hint of Seville bitterness. In fact the first thing that I did when I woke up this morning was to rush downstairs and put on two chunky slices of toast so as to guzzle some as soon as possible. If you have a pressure cooker and not...

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Mint jelly recipe

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 22 comments

Mint jelly recipe

I slipped on my golden boots (only joking) and rustled this up yesterday when rain stopped play in the garden. I’d researched apple mint jelly in the meantime and discovered that cooking apples give a better overall flavour (Bramleys ideally if you live in the UK). I also needed to use and a lot more vinegar than I thought. This recipe tastes like a jelly equivalent of homemade mint sauce, minty and full of flavour but much more delicate than the in your face commercially produced mint sauce.  I also ‘saved’ the jars of mint jelly that...

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Pumpkin jam recipe

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 28 comments

Pumpkin jam recipe

  Sweet, tangy with a good ginger fizz, I’m delighted with this recipe. It uses the type of pumpkin grown for carving rather than eating. So you can make your pumpkin Jack O’ lantern and then recycle the pumpkin flesh into jam. Perfect for spreading on toast on a cold winter morning or hot jam tarts for a bonfire night party or even dressing a special steamed sponge pudding. To be quite honest with you, the flesh of a carving type pumpkin is pretty neutral tasting but it does infuse flavours very well and gives the jam a good texture....

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Easy and delicious spicy pickled onions recipe

Posted in Christmas, Jam Jelly and Preserves, Preserving, Vegetarian | 18 comments

Easy and delicious spicy pickled onions recipe

  Unless you already make pickled onions, let me share a secret. Pickled onions are ridiculously easy to make! They are great Christmas or anytime presents, especially if you use a decent quality vinegar. Poor old Danny’s acid tum can’t take malt vinegar so I always make a couple of jars for him every year using white wine vinegar or cider vinegar. I didn’t realise that I hadn’t posted my recipe until someone emailed me asking for one. This chutney is based on Oded Schwartz’s method from his superb book Preserving. I’ve added...

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Blueberry and blackberry jam recipe

Posted in Jam Jelly and Preserves | 9 comments

Blueberry and blackberry jam recipe

  “Why are you letting the raspberries rot on the canes? The birds are getting the blueberries and I haven’t seen you pick more than a handful of blackberries this year.” Danny is generally fairly easy going so this remark was a bit of a surprise. He was right about the fruit though, I’ve been distracted by other things. What a terrible waste. Suitably chastised I slunk down to the fruit cage and picked a bowl of raspberries. The Autumn fruiting raspberries have a much better flavour than the summer ones and will keep on fruiting...

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