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Quarter the apples and toss them in with the water and cider into a large pan. Don’t bother to core or peel them as youíll throw the natural pectin away. Add the peppers and chillis, roughly chopped and bring to the boil. Simmer for 20-25 minutes, but leave a window open as itíll stink the kitchen out.
Put the contents into a thick muslin or jelly bag, or failing that a pair of old tights (sterilised first!) and suspend over a bowl overnight, allowing gravity to weave its magic. On no account, not matter how tempted, should you squeeze the bag/tights as this will just make the end result cloudy.
Next day, measure the juice. This is where you determine the sugar, following the old one-for-one strategy i.e. a pound of sugar for every pint of juice. You may also be tempted to use some preserving sugar, which has added pectin, depending on how confident you feel about your apples. Spoon off any white scum that forms – this is natural.
Bring to the boil until you reach setting point (220F). If you havenít got a jam thermometer put a few drops on a saucer thatís been in the fridge and see if it wrinkles when you push it. While this is going on thoroughly clean some jars and put them in the over at very low heat to sterilise them. The end result is a bit of a murky colour so some colouring might be worth considering.
Pour the setting liquid into the jars (put a teaspoon in initially to take the initial heat), add a top and label.
This stuff is dynamite with cheese.
4 lb cooking apples
2 pts water
2 pts cider vinegar (I use Aspalls Organic, but check Big Barn for local suppliers)
Chillis, quantity depending on variety and taste. I use between 15-20 cayenne (the long thin ones)
Four peppers (same colour as the chillis)
Sugar (see below)