British blackcurrants contain high levels of anthocyanins that guard against joint inflammation, eye strain, kidney stones, cardiovascular disease and a host of other conditions.
Enjoy these recipes and know that you're getting all of the above benefits, plus you'll be satisfying your taste buds too.
Apple and blackcurrant jam
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
500g blackcurrants, fresh or frozen thawed
500g bramley cooking apples
2 tbsp cassis
1 x 1kg pack preserving sugar
You will also need:
4 x 450g (1lb) jam jars with lids and 4 waxed discs
1. Peel, core and chop the apples into small chunks and place the fruit in a large preserving pan (or a very large saucepan).
2. Add the blackcurrants and cassis along with 2 tablespoons of water and cook over a low heat for 10-15 minutes until the apple and blackcurrants have reduced to a soft Pulp – add a little more water if the fruit sticks to the base of the pan.
3. Add the sugar and stir over a low heat until it is completely dissolved. Raise the heat and bring to the boil.
4. Cook The Jam at a rapid boil, stirring occasionally to prevent the jam burning on the bottom of the pan.
5. The Jam should take 5-7 minutes to reach setting point – to test when it is ready spoon a small amount of jam on to a cold saucer.
6. Leave for one minute and then, using the tip of your finger, push the jam and if it wrinkles then setting point has been reached. If it isn't quite ready, continue to boil the jam and test 2 minutes later.
7. Towards The End of the cooking time, sterilise the jars. Preheat the oven to 120C, fan 110, gas ½. Wash and dry the jars, place them on a baking tray and heat in the oven for 10 minutes.
8. Pour the jam into the hot jars, add a waxed disc to each one and Seal with a lid.
9. When the jam is cold, it is ready to eat!
- Makes approx 4 x 450g (1lb) jars
Lime and Blackcurrant Swirl Cheesecake
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 1 hour, 5 minutes
You will also need:
a 20cm non-stick springform tin, base lined with baking parchment
1. Preheat the oven to 150C, fan 140C, gas 1.
2. Place the blackcurrants, 75g sugar and 1 tablespoon of water in a small saucepan and heat gently for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the fruit is soft but retains it's shape, and is sitting in a pool of syrup.
3. Transfer half the blackcurrants to a sieve with most of the juice, and press through a sieve into a bowl, discarding the solids in the sieve.
4. Set aside both the pan of remaining blackcurrants and bowl of puree and leave to cool until needed.
5. Place the biscuits in a food processor and pulse until crushed. Add the butter and process again until combined.
6. Press the crumb mixture over the base and refrigerate until needed.
7. To make the filling, beat the cream cheese gently until smooth, then slowly add the sour cream, remaining 200g sugar, eggs, lime juice and zest. The mixture should now be smooth and thick.
8. Scatter the blackcurrants evenly from the pan over the crumb base and pour the cream cheese filling on top. Add drops of the blackcurrant puree and swirl lightly with a knife to achieve a marbled effect.
9. Bake for 1 hour until firm to the touch. Leave to cool at room temperature and refrigerate until ready to serve with any remaining blackcurrant coulis.
- Serves 10
The Juicy Benefits
British blackcurrants are renowned and bred for their Deep Purple colour, which indicates a high level of anthocyanins - important disease fighting antioxidants. As well as protecting against colds and flu, these antioxidants can also help guard against ageing, joint inflammation, eyestrain, kidney stones, cardiovascular disease, cancer and urinary tract infections.