The trees are laden with tart Crab Apples this year. Truly wild Crab Apples always have a more intense flavour than any other apple. They can be too tart for some to eat raw but the appleness really intensifies when cooked. They will certainly leave you wanting more.
They are perfect for small hands to pick as there are no brambles or nasties to get in the way.
Look along the hedgerow for small apples that are green, red or orange and yellow in colour. Some of the smaller crab apples can be mistaken for rosehip or similar. To make sure it is an apple just cut one in half and you will soon see!
Crab Apples have an exceptionally high pectin and acid content which makes them ideal for setting fruit jams and jellies. However my favourite is Duncan's Crab Apple Chilli Chutney - perfect with all sorts of cheeses or Pork. It is a great way to pimp up a grilled cheese toastie on a cold autumn day. As with any preserving patience pays off. Leave it until the end of October and it will have matured to a lovely deep flavour. The more you preserve the easier it is to be able to wait as you have an abundance in your kitchen. If you want more delicious recipes like this why not buy our best selling book - Foraging Fairytales: Hedgerow Festival. Packed full of mouthwateringly good recipes or follow us over on Tiktok for more inspiration.
Crab Apple Cocktails and Halloween Crab Apple Toffee Sticks
Keep 12 of your Crab Apples whole in the Freezer - ready to make Halloween Crab Apples in October. I always find an Apple too big but these are perfect in size and give you that sweet and sour taste sensation.
We also suggest making Crab Apple Syrup as this allows you to replace citrus in cocktails. Making your cocktails full of seasonal goodness and you don't need to pay for lemons and limes. Can you imagine all the cocktails you could make from that! This works best choosing Crab Apples that aren't quite ripe.
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Crab Apple Chilli Chutney
The trees are laden with tart Crab Apples this year. Truly wild Crab Apples always have a more intense flavour than any other apple. They can be too tart for some to eat raw but the appleness really intensifies when cooked. They will certainly leave you wanting more.They are perfect for small hands to pick as there are no brambles or nasties to get in the way.
Reduce the heat and gently simmer, stirring occasionally, for at least an hour or until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Once you're happy with the thickness, pour into sterilised jars
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