Easy Redcurrant & Port Jelly

It’s not been a great year for growing, with plants confused by a very early faux-summer followed by months of endless rain and cold. But we did enjoy harvesting summer fruit from our allotment plot in mid July, bringing home tubs of redcurrants, blackcurrants, gooseberries and raspberries.

I’m not a huge fan of redcurrants but my sister insists on them for Christmas day, so I decided to make her some redcurrant and port jelly for this year’s Christmas feasting.

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Easy Redcurrant & Port Jelly


400 grams redcurrants
400 grams sugar (I used half white + half light muscovado, as that’s what I had in stock)
Approximately 20 ml port (added to 250 ml jelly)


  • Wash redcurrants, taking care not to crush, and drain well. There’s no need to remove the stalks (though I found it therapeutic to do so as I was harvesting them).

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  • Place redcurrants and sugar into a large pan, with a jam thermometer, if you have one.
  • Bring to the boil on a medium to high heat.
  • Once the sugar has fully dissolved and the currants start to soften, use a wooden spoon or potato masher to break the currants open and mash them into the liquid.
  • Boil until the mixture reaches 104 °C.
    (If you don’t have a jam thermometer, test for a set by either dropping some jam onto a freezer-chilled plate to see if it sets enough to wrinkle to the touch after a few seconds or by lifting a wooden spoon out of the liquid and seeing whether the drops run together and fall off cleanly, which means it’s not yet reached setting point, or coagulate, form thick triangles, and fall off thickly).


  • Place a clean muslin cloth into a sieve, over a heat-resistant jug and pour the jam into the cloth.

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  • Allow the liquid to drip through. As I am keener on maximum yield than a crystal clear jelly, I twist and squeeze the cloth to force every last drop of liquid through.
  • Add port and mix well.


  • Pour the finished jelly into sterilised jars whilst both the liquid and the jars are still hot, and seal immediately with sterilised lids.


Sheepish postscript: Sister has gently pointed out that I have confused redcurrants and cranberries, it being the latter she always has for Christmas. But she is looking forward to trying my jelly this year anyway! Oops!

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16 Comments to "Easy Redcurrant & Port Jelly"

  1. Camilla @fabfood4all

    I love redcurrants with just a sprinkling of sugar and was looking longingly at them when we went fruit picking yesterday but had to ration myself! I love your redcurrant and port jelly too and am particularly fond of it with roast lamb (so I couldn’t wait till Christmas Day) as well as poultry. Wish I had time for an allotment!

  2. Vivien Lloyd

    I love this flavour my favourite for Christmas! I cook my red currants gently in half their quantity of water
    Until pulpy. strain through a jelly bag then add 600g sugar for every 600ml juice. Then dissolve the sugar in the juice boil to set and add port. This method increases the yield and the first stage of gentle cooking extracts the pectin and acid from the fruit which gives the set.


    That’s how I always make apple and plum jellies, but wanted to shortcut it a bit this time, seemed to work out OK. But yeah, would normally do juice extraction first, then add sugar to resulting liquid and boil… was impatient to get it all done in one step instead!

  3. Dominic

    I was going to say!…. But red currant jelly with lamb is utterly divine so spate some for that. Excellent recipe and very smartly done. X


    Heheh, well they’re both red berries! Duh! Yes and should go nice with whatever meat we have on Xmas day…

  4. The Grubworm

    Ooh, i love the look of this. Am very tempted to make it instead of (or as well as) the usual cranberry sauce. Would it work as well if you left the whole fruit in rather than squeezing through a sieve? I am a bit of sucker for whole-fruit jams and jellies.


    I would think so. More of a jam than a jelly, essentially. Make sure you do clean all the little stalks and bits off, in that case, as won’t be able to strain those out. But yeah, just do the regular jam recipe. For redcurrants, as they’re high in pectin, just fruit and sugar and boiling till hit setting temperature is fine. For some fruits, you’ll need to use either the jam sugar with added pectin, add pectin powder separately or add lemon juice and peel (which you can fish out afterwards) to get some more pectin in.

  5. Jonjon

    Made this today, it worked out well, can’t wait to try it in a few months

  6. jen

    I made this today so simple but I can tell it’s going to be one of my go to recipes tasted a little off the spoon and yep it’s delicious thanks for the recipe


    Oh I’m really glad you enjoyed it and thank you so much for coming back to let me know.


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