Sweet, tart, piquant, and bitter – you can find all these flavors in the unusual yet delicious Rowan Berries Apple Jam.
Rowan Berries Apple Jam
Hello, my friends! I’m super excited now. There are three main reasons. First of all, that’s the Thanksgiving weekend in Canada meaning it’s a long weekend too. Secondly, over the last couple of days, I have consumed a lot of sugar (In form of cakes, chocolate, and ice cream), and I think my body is experiencing a sugar overload. Last, I am so pumped (Or is that still the sugar overdose?) to share this Rowan Berries Apple Jam with you.
It always feels good when you can introduce a new ingredient to your readers. And I believe while many of you might have seen Rowan trees and berries before (They are rather common in Europe, particularly in Britain and Scandinavia, Nort America, and Asia), not many of you have tried them. As the matter the fact, I’ve just discovered that Rowans are actually a fruit, not berries.
Alternatively, you might have tried them once but immediately sworn you won’t do it again. The reason is simple: raw berries are bitter. Highly bitter. Think of a combination of grapefruit and tonic water. Of course, there are different kinds of Rowan trees, so the level of bitterness can vary, from very mild to extremely strong. It’s believed that Rowan berries are slightly poisonous when consumed raw due to one acid, and they can cause nausea and upset stomach. But trust me, raw berries are not so enjoyable to eat a lot. The trick is that when you cook berries, the toxic part of that acid disappears. Also, when cooked, the bitterness if not completely goes away, becomes pleasant. Cooked berries remind cranberries a little bit.
It is also considered that you should harvest berries after the first frost as they reduce bitterness. I didn’t want to wait so long because of the competition (Some birds love Rowan too). Instead, I put some in the freezer overnight, and I think that trick worked too. Another way to reduce the bitterness is to combine berries with other fruit. A quick research on the Internet showed that Rowen berries are delicious when combined with apples. As you can see, I didn’t hesitate to make this Rowan Berries Apple Jam. It turned scrumptious! Sweet, bitter, and unique. It’s good on a toast or as an addition to a cheese board (Pretty good with Brie!)
So I am hoping this post would encourage you to give Rowan berries a try. I also froze a large container of berries, so I will be able to enjoy some vitamins during autumn and fall. If you need some more inspiration – well, stay with me because I will post two recipes soon. In a meanwhile, you can make this Rowan Berries Apple Jam.
But please hurry – bird won’t wait for you :)
- 2/3 - 1 cup Rowan berries (Start with 2/3 cup if you have never tried them before), preferable frozen in the freezer overnight
- 3 medium sweet&tart apples, cubed (about 4 cups, honeycrisp or similar flavor would be a good choice)
- 1 cup fine sugar
- Place the berries and apples (you can peel them but I didn't) in a pan. Add 1-2 tbsp. water and the sugar.
- Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, for about 25 minutes or until the berries and apples are soft.
- Off heat and let cool. You can leave jam as it is or puree (using either a blender or sieve). For this version, I pureed the jam, but then I returned some of the skins for an extra texture and flavors.
- Keep the jam in a container refrigerated, for up to 2 weeks.