It's the Great British Beer Festival this week and to celebrate here is one of the most delicious - and surprising recipes - from my book An Appetite for Ale. I love serving them because no-one has the faintest idea they have beer in them. It's great for disarming prejudices!
Note: the jellies are deliberately left less sweet than most commercial jellies so that the flavour of the beer comes through. I find them really refreshing but you can, of course, add extra sugar if you want.
Raspberry and cherry beer jellies
These jellies are deliberately left less sweet than most commercial jellies so the sour cherry flavour of the beer comes through. I find them really refreshing but you can of course add extra sugar if you want
4 small sheets of gelatine (about 6g or 1/4 of a 25g pack)
375ml Kriek or other cherry or raspberry flavoured beer
1 x 470g jar of pitted Morello cherries (Polish ones are best)
2-3 tbsp sugar syrup or caster sugar
125g fresh or frozen raspberries
Place the gelatine in bowl of cold water and leave to soak for 3 minutes until soft. Measure the Kriek into a jug and top up to the 400ml mark with syrup from the cherries. Pour into a saucepan and add the sugar. Put over a very low heat until the sugar has dissolved then heat until lukewarm (it shouldn’t boil). Squeeze the soaked gelatine leaves, add them to the beer mixture and stir to dissolve then set aside to cool.
Drain the remaining cherries and rinse the raspberries. Put an assortment of berries in the bottom of four glasses or glass dishes then pour over enough jelly to cover them. Put the glasses in the fridge to chill. As soon as the jelly in the glasses has set (about an hour) add another layer of fruit and jelly. Repeat until the fruit and jelly are used up, ending with a layer of jelly.
Leave in the fridge to set for another 45 minutes to an hour before serving with lightly whipped cream, sweetened with a little vanilla sugar or with vanilla ice cream
Mango and passionfruit beer jellies
Follow the above recipe substituting passionfruit beer for the Kriek (top up with tropical fruit juice, passionfruit or mango juice to make it up to the 400ml mark), then mix in about 400g of cubed mango and passionfruit pulp. Adjust sweetness to taste (you can always add a squeeze of lemon juice if it’s too sweet)
Blueberry and peach beer jellies
Follow the above recipe substituting peach flavoured beer for the Kriek (top up with white cranberry and grape juice to make it up to the 400ml mark), then mix in about 400g of cubed peach or nectarine and blueberries. Adjust sweetness to taste as above.
Image ©Vanessa Courtier though this is snapped by me from the book.
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