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Rosella Jam

A bright crimson-coloured jam that's the perfect balance of sweetness and tart. Simple to make.
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rosella jam

If you need something to brighten your day, this Rosella Jam may be the answer.

It’s a gorgeous crimson-coloured treat that will light up not just your day but the weeks ahead as you enjoy it on toast, scones or wherever else you can squeeze in some jam.

It’s inspired by Nana Ling’s jam recipes and others I found from that early-mid 1900s era.

Like all of the jams in the Cooking with Nana Ling collection, I’ve made it super simple to find success. 

recipe for rosella jam

Rosellas: perfect for jam-making

Rosellas (Hibiscus sabdariffa) are edible hibiscus flowers from a plant that was introduced to Australia and now grows in the wild.

It’s gorgeous red hues and deliciously tart flavour have made it a favourite in cordials, teas and jams.

You might find the fresh rosella flowers at a farmers market or specialty fruit shop.

You could also try growing your own bush, which I’ve often seen at nurseries.

Otherwise, you could substitute for hibiscus flowers in syrup (again, if you can find those in a store or online).

fresh rosellas

The recipe for Rosella Jam

Rosella Jam is one of the easier jams to make according to one of the old recipes I found in newspapers.

These older recipes also confirm that all you need to make this jam is fresh rosellas, sugar and water.

And they provide another hint about determining when the jam is ready, saying “it should be a clear, bright red when cooked.”

rosella jam recipe
Western Mail, 24 June 1948 (top left), The Sun, 28 April 1918, The Land, 10 April 1942.

How to make Rosella Jam

To start the jam-making process, you first need to separate the red petals from the seed pod inside.

Just tear the red, fleshy part of the flower from the green seed pod inside using your hands.

rosella calyces

This recipe doesn’t include quantities.

Simply use the amount of rosellas you have available and the amount of sugar is calculated by measuring how much mixture you have before adding the sugar. You add the same amount of sugar as the amount of mixture you have.

So, back to peeling the rosellas.

It might take a while to separate the flowers and seed pods, but you’ll get there.

Consider it a form of mindfulness or meditation. Or ask the kids/partner/whoever else is around to help.

how to make rosella jam

Next, wash the seeds in water and then place in a saucepan. Cover with water (just) then bring to the boil and boil, covered, for 30 minutes.

Strain and retain liquid but discard seed pods.

Wash the calyces in water and place in a saucepan. Add the liquid from the seeds and a little extra water if necessary to cover the calyces (just).

Bring to the boil and then simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes or until fruit is tender.

Remove from the heat and measure the volume of the mixture. Add the same volume of sugar and heat gently to dissolve the sugar.

Bring to the boil and then simmer for 20-30 minutes.

The mixture will thicken and turn a very bright red colour.

Stir a couple of times throughout the process to gauge whether it’s thickening and make sure it’s not sticking to the bottom of the saucepan.

The trick to making great jam is, of course, making sure you cook it just enough so it sets to perfection.

I’ve supplied time guidelines here, but getting familiar with how you can tell when jam is set means you’ll never be left with runny jam or a sticky mess again.

Okay, you’re nearly there.

Finally, pour the mixture into sterilised jars and place in the fridge once they reach room temperature.

recipe for rosella jam
rosella jam

Rosella Jam

A bright crimson-coloured jam that's the perfect balance of sweetness and tart. Simple to make.
5 from 3 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Australian
Keyword: rosella jam
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 10 servings

Equipment

  • sterilised jars

Ingredients

  • fresh rosellas
  • water
  • caster or white sugar

Instructions

  • Separate the red, fleshy flower part of the rosellas (calyces) from the seed pods.
    separate calyces from seed pos
  • Wash seeds in water and then place in a saucepan. Cover with water (just) then bring to the boil and boil, covered, for 30 minutes.
    how to make rosella jam 2
  • Strain and retain liquid but discard seed pods.
  • Wash the calyces in water and place in a saucepan. Add the liquid from seeds and a little extra water if necessary to cover the calyces (just).
    how to make rosella jam 3
  • Bring to the boil and then simmer on medium heat for 20 minutes or until fruit is tender.
  • Remove from heat and measure the volume of the fruit mixture. Add the same volume of sugar and heat gently to dissolve the sugar.
    making rosella jam
  • Bring to the boil and then simmer for 20-30 minutes. The mixture will thicken and turn a very bright red colour. Stir a couple of times throughout the process to gauge whether it's thickening and make sure it's not sticking to the bottom of the saucepan.
    boiling rosella jam
  • Pour mixture into sterilised jars and place in fridge once they reach room temperature.
Recipe Rating




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