Our dear friends Rae and Monica dropped in the day before my birthday party to share a little bubbly with us to celebrate! It was such a lovely gesture since they live about 50 minutes away. They dropped their three girls and some friends off on Bloor Street in our hood because we have such lovely shops to browse through; our local Chapters is a great visit because its a converted theatre with beautiful architectural features not to mention the cool stuff to buy! And then there is Sweet Flour where you can get a custom-baked fresh cookie in about a minute (they have a variety of raw doughs and a whole mess of inclusions, you pick the dough and inclusions and presto, a freshly baked cookie!). Definitely worth visiting. They also shopped the trendy clothing stores while we visited with Rae and Mon and a couple of hours and bottles later their girls dropped in! It was such a lovely visit; we’ve known the girls since they were born, so it was nice to have adult conversations. The girls very kindly and generously bought us a box of red currants! How nice is that? With everything going on, my big bash the next day and leaving in a couple of days for a short vaycay, I knew I had to do something very special with these delicate berries, but what? Then I remembered my dear friend Sissi makes the most incredible hot and sweet jellies so I took a little trip to her beautiful blog With a Glass to see what kinds of jellies she has made and boy, what a selection. Sadly their were no jellies for red currants, so I expanded my search on the web and found this lovely jelly recipe by David Lebovitz’s Red Currant Jam recipe, with some artistic license! Thank you Sissi for the inspiration.
The jelly is slightly sweet with some smokey heat right at the very end, nothing unpleasant, and if I were to make it again, I would likely add a bit more heat to it.
Red Current Jelly
based on David Lebovitz’s Red Current Jam
- 1 part currents (150g)
- 1/2 part sugar
- 1/2 guajillo pepper
- 1/4 ancho pepper
- 1/8 haberno pepper
- Finely chop the three varieties of peppers, including the seed if you prefer a more robust heat.
- Remove the large stems from the currants, rinse. Add the currents and the chopped peppers to a pot large enough to be able to add enough water just so that it covers the currents and the peppers.
- Cook the currants and the peppers stirring frequently until they’re soft and wilted (like you would in making cranberry sauce).
- Weigh the glass container you will transfer the purée into. Press the purée through a fine sieve to remove the seeds, stems and pepper bits into the weighed glass container. (or if you have a scales which tares, simply put the glass container on top, tare it and press the currant pepper mix into it.
- Now weigh the purée in the glass container, subtract the first weight from the second weight and divide it by four (if you have a scale that tares, this is much easier).
- For each pound (kilo), add the 1/4 of the amount of sugar to the pot.
- Mix the purée and the sugar and cook over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once the mixture is at a rolling boil, let it boil for five minutes undisturbed.
- After five minutes, turn off the heat and skim off any scum.
- Pour into sterilized jars up to the top and screw on the lids firmly. Turn the jars upside down and let cool completely (this is Lebovitz method to can, it worked for me!).
Speaking of the big bash, here is the photo book I created so I can remember the wonderful day everyone made for me (any references to age were intentionally left out, so don’t be rude and ask me how old I am ;-)!):