Scarlet Guelder Rose berries stewed in water and sugar to form a syrupy burgundy strawberry-like Jam; Guelder Rose Jam.
Dribble a little something sweet into your pecker as you gorge for more. And, indulge.
This dish will topple any belief that vegan food can’t be simple to make.
- After a foraging foray following first frost and handpicking luminescent red Guelder Rose berries to clamber home
- When you’ve just discovered Guelder Rose berries at your local farmer’s market and have a desire to create a unique jam with an exotic appeal
- When the onset of winter is too much and you need a little jam that’ll have you creating a snack as you put your feet up in front of the log fire
Guelder Rose Jam was inspired following a foraging foray – the scarlet berries looked out of place, shining brightly. Years later, the discovery that these berries were edible and the bark is treatment for cramp, made me want to search out more about this little shrub. It isn’t part of the rose family and so, lacks thorns. It is part of the Viburnum family.
Guelder Rose was originally a native to Netherland and Russia but made its way to Britain and through the mists of time has become a native here. The Meskwaki would use Guelder Rose for menstrual cramp. It can be found in hedges, woodland edges, riverbanks and in the heart of London. Finding Guelder Rose is a sign of ancient woodland-indicator; an uncommon habitat and discovery.
Guelder Rose Jam is a condiment, vegan and paleo.
What equipment to use
For this recipe, I suggest:
What to do next
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My recipes are featured in vegan speciality publications: Nourished, Vegan Life, Plant Based and Vegan, Food and Living.
Order my first self-published book, “Essence: The Beginner’s Guide to Veganism” part of the three-part Circle of Food series. My second book “Presence: The Ascending Vegan” – which explores how to maintain a vegan practice is out in 2027 – I have compiled all the chapters including recipes.
Going strong since 2013.
- 500g Guelder rose berries
- 250ml filtered water
- 250g raw unrefined cane sugar
- Pluck the berries off their stalks and place into a medium sized saucepan. Pour over water and toss in the sugar. Bring to boil. Simmer for about 30 minutes.
- Mash the berries releasing the pips.
- You can either retain the pips – which some find to be hard for their palette or remove the pips.
- To remove the berry pips, transfer the jam mixture into a large mesh sieve and place over a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon gently drain out excess liquid.
- Transfer any remaining sediment to muslin cloth. Use both hands to squeeze out any excess liquid into the mixing bowl. Discard the pips.
- Transfer the liquid to the saucepan. Bring to the boil and the temperature to 105 degrees (use a candy thermometer, if you have one). Otherwise, boil off the liquid. Use a spatula to test the consistency. The consistency you want to reach is when the jam forms thick droplets that hang. The jam should thicken and froth and is made when it changes to a rich dark red colour and the thickens to a jam like consistency and paste.
- Place the jam in warm sterilised jars. Once cool, place in the fridge.