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Blackcurrant Recipes?

11 years ago

Anyone have any blackcurrant recipes? My shrubs suddenly produced this year, (they're three years old) and I didn't know what else to do, so I froze them like blueberries.

I'm particularly interested in British recipes since the English seem to grow them more than we do in the states.

I was rather astonished at the flavor. I had no idea they taste so wonderful. Hope I haven't ruined them by freezing.

Comments (11)

  • digdirt2
    11 years ago

    There is a great recipe in the Favorite Recipes thread here:

    Pear and Currant Chutney

    Makes 2 1/2 - 3 cups
    1 cup dried currants
    6 tbls pear brandy
    4 pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2" pieces
    2 ribs celery, cut into 1/4" pieces
    1/2 cup sugar
    1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
    3 to 3 1/2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
    pinch cayenne

    Put currants and brandy into a medium saucepan and simmer over medium heat until currants are plump and have absorbed most of the liquor, about 7 minutes. Add pears, celery, sugar, lemon juice, ginger and cayenne and stir well. Return to simmer, reduce head to medium low and simmer until pears are very soft and translucent and juices are thick and syrupy, about 1 hour.

    Put chutney into a clean jar with a tight lid or hot water bath 10 minutes. If not processed, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Allow chutney to sit for a couple of weeks, the flavor improves with age.

    Not for canning recipes: check out 50+1 Recipes for Black Currants

    and BBC Foods - Black Currant Recipes Especially see the one for Berry Crumble Traycake - it is fantastic.


  • cannond
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Dave, most U.S. recipes using dried currants are actually talking about a small dried Greek grape, a raisin. Do you happen to know whether the recipe you posted is actually talking about ribes?

    Thanks for the other sites. I'm thinking primarily of preserving blackcurrants.

  • malna
    11 years ago

    It is confusing, isn't it? Dried currants really are grapes. In that recipe, they mean dried grapes (Vitis), not dried currants (Ribes).

    Uses for black currants are Bar-Le-Duc (black currant jam, traditionally de-seeded with a needle or goose quill), Creme de Cassis (black currant liqueur which you can make at home), and Christine Ferber has a recipe for a Black Currant and Pinot Noir jam. I can't grow black currants, but it was excellent using my red currants.

    I can post those recipes if you're interested and I'll see if I have any more.

  • cannond
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Malna, the Bar-Le-Duc would be wonderful, IF I don't have to use a goose quill or needle. (I'm not that industrious)

    I didn't notice seeds when I ate them fresh. Are some varieties seedier than others? Could I make the Bar-Le-Duc without seeding, do you think?

    Please do post your recipes if you have the time. I'd be grateful. Also, do you know if I can dry blackcurrants?

    Liqueur, like cassis? Lovely. I could make wine, too. I'm sure I have a recipe for wine around here somewhere.


  • digdirt2
    11 years ago

    Do you happen to know whether the recipe you posted is actually talking about ribes?

    No I don't, but even if it is that doesn't mean you can't make it using actual currants. Dried or even fresh currants for that matter. Berry recipes aren't that 'purist'. :)

    And you can use any "currant" recipe regardless of the color called for in the recipe. Gooseberry recipes, chokecherry recipes, cranberry recipes, most any 'berry' recipe can be used too. You simply adjust sweeteners to taste.


  • cannond
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    It's nice to know that any berry will work with any berry recipe, Dave.

    But I think applications specific to certain fruit might help bring out that fruit's unique flavor. We'll see....

  • malna
    11 years ago


    Some currants are seedier than others. I have seen dried black currants, so I *think* you could dehydrate them. I tried drying cranberries one year and that was an epic fail, so currants may be another "better commercially done" type fruit. I don't know for sure.

    Here's the recipes. The liqueur from Canadian Living is linked at the bottom. If you search on their recipe site for currants, they have about 100 different ones for all sorts of jams and baked goods. Have fun!

    Adapted from The Jamlady Cookbook

    1 quart black currants, destemmed and deseeded (*deseeding is definitely optional)
    2 cups sugar
    1 cup water

    Boil the sugar and water for 1 minute. Add the currants and cook for approximately 15 minutes. Check the jell point (8 degrees above boiling - adjust for your altitude). You can let it stand for a few minutes, then stir the fruit to keep it suspended in the jam. Put in jars, seal with lids and rings, BWB for 10 minutes. Makes about 4-8 oz. jars.

    *Technically it's not Bar-Le-Duc if you leave the seeds in, but who has hours to spend deseeding currants with a needle?

    Found this one - I made a jam with red raspberries and red currants, and it was excellent. I love the combination.

    Black Raspberry Cassis Jam
    Adapted from Gourmet Preserves Chez Madelaine

    2 pints black raspberries
    2 pints black currants
    1/2 cup water
    2 tablespoons lemon juice
    3 cups sugar

    Combine raspberries and currants with water in a non-reactive saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Uncover and simmer for 15 minutes.

    Pass the berries through the berry screen of a food mill to remove the seeds and skin. If the pulp and juice is less than 3 cups, add water to measure that amount. If the puree is more than 3 cups, increase the sugar to equal the amount of the puree.

    Return the puree and lemon juice to a clean pan, and bring to a simmer, stirring frequently. Add the sugar 1/2 cup at a time, waiting for the jam to return to the simmer before adding more. Stir after every addition to prevent sticking.

    Cook jam at medium-high heat for 5 minutes longer (after all the sugar has been added). The thermometer will reach 216-218 degrees and the jam will be very thick. (We've had discussions here about her "jell point" temperatures. It probably should be a little higher for a firmer set. In my limited experience, at 218 the jam was still pretty soft. Very good but runny. I usually shoot for at least 219-220 at my altitude.)

    Remove from the heat. Fill hot, sterilized jars to with 1/4 inch of rim. Attach lids, rings, and BWB for 10 minutes. Makes 3-8 oz. jars.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Black Currant Liqueur-Canadian Living

  • readinglady
    11 years ago

    I made Madelaine Bullwinkel's Raspberry Red Currant Preserves and one year used blackcurrants to good effect. That recipe is a raspberry preserve suspended in a currant syrup. It's troublesome but delicious.

    If you do a search for Delia Smith + blackcurrant on Google you'll get a number of fine blackcurrant recipes as well as her jam. There are few better.

    Also UKTV, the British food network has all kinds of blackcurrant recipes. I'm thinking about the cheesecake.


    Here is a link that might be useful: UK Food Network Blackcurrant Recipes

  • olga_6b
    11 years ago

    Simple jam made from black currant berries and sugar is wonderful. You don't need to take seeds out and most varieties will set w/o any need for pectin. Nothing can be simpler, just mix together and cook for 10 -15 min. Amount of sugar will depend on your taste and how you want to store it (can ,freeze, fridge,etc)
    Another very simple way is just to grind berries with sugar in food processer. You can freeze the mixture or store it for shorter time just in the fridge. Black currants contain some substances that prevent berries mixed with sugar from spoilage (similar to cranberries and lingonberries).

  • cannond
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    I'm responding a little late because it rained here last night. We've been jubilating. It may not be the end of the drought, but it's the beggining of hope. I shouldn't be reading The Worst Hard Time. Gives me nightmares.

    Malna, I'm doing your Bar-le-Duc recipe tonight. That recipe appeals to me. It's more of a preserve, isn't it?
    I'm not planning on thawing the currants first...hope they do well.

    I've Googled Delia, Carol, and now have several ideas for these berries. It's time I bought some haute cuisine jamming books, which I've avoided based on a prejudice towards exotic ingredients. I got to thinking about it, though, and realized that I use exotics all the time. Sugar, nutmeg, vanilla...all are exotics to my region.

    You've all come to my rescue. I wish I could bring you a tart or something. A thank-you will have to do, so thank you.
    P.S. Olga, I'd like to hear more about these substances in currants. I've read they're loaded with phytonutrients, but have read nothing about the preserving qualities. Can you direct me to a site?

  • olga_6b
    11 years ago

    Cannod, sorry don't have links for this. I read it in a book several years ago. Don't even remember now which one. It was not on internet. I remembered this because it matched my personal experience with theses berries. I was always amazed for how long you can keep cranberries, lingonberries, etc in a fridge in just a bucket with some water in.

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