There are several red currant bushes on my property and over the last two years, I had researched uses for them to prevent the berries from rotting on the vine another season. Currants are a great treat for chickens but five chickens can only eat so many berries before they become bored with them and ignore the remaining fruit. The branches and leaves are a wonderful treat for the goats but they avoid the berries so how am I to not waste all these red jeweled bushes? In walks a super easy jam recipe!
Red currants have natural pectin in their stems, who knew? So when collecting berries go ahead and trim off the entire berry cluster, stems and all. For the harvest, you might want to grab a knee pad, trimmers, and some freezer bags if you can not get around to making the jam right away. I sit down next to the bushes and begin to trim off 12-14 inch branches, then I flip the branch over so the berries hang and I can see where they connect to the branch. I cut the berry cluster off over my opened freezer bag and then place the branch in a pile to give to the goats once I am finished.
Red Currant Jam:
2 pounds of red currants with stems
2 1/2 cups sugar
- Wash your currants and stems in a colander in cold water. Be sure to pull out any berries past their prime as well as hardwood and leaves.
- Heat the washed berries in a large saucepan until they are reduced to mostly juice.
- Drain your liquid using cheesecloth or a fine mesh screen to remove the seeds and berry stems.
- Once drained add the juice back into the saucepan after a quick rinse.
- Add the sugar to your juice and return to low heat on the stovetop. While the sugar incorporates and dissolves into your juice go ahead and sanitize and prep your canning jars and lids.
- Once jars are ready pour your jam liquid into the jars and allow to cool.
This stuff is delicious on zucchini bread, pancakes and toast! It has a beautiful color would add beauty to a cheese and meat platter. I love that this is a unique and limited item that I can produce on the homestead in one evening.
Have you tried red currant Jam? If so, what do you like to use it with?