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Choke Cherries and Crab Apples... Questions, please help.

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I've got loads of cherries dangling from trees now and they're nice and plump. Dark red, almost black...
How do I know when they're ripe, how do I collect them and what recipes can I use with them without a pressure canner?

Same with crab apples. I've got loads of them, they just keep dropping from the tree. Some have brown spots, some don't. Am I supposed to crawl up there and pick them? Are they ripe? Or do I wait for them to drop? And what can I make with them, without a pressure canner? Obviously, I haven't bought one yet.


Thanks in advance guys big_smile You're lifesavers.

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You wish you were as awesome as me.
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post #2 of 7

Choke Cherry Jelly is God's gift to mankind! It is so gooood! There are recipies in with the pectin you get in stores. Just make sure you use plenty of it. I didn't use enough and ended up with choke cherry syrup which is just as good and there is nothing better on pancakes. Crab apples make great apple jelly especially if they're nice and red ones. Pick em up off the ground for jelly which is what most people use them for. They have more natural pectin the longer you wait, less if you pick em off the tree. Enjoy!

"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
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"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
Reply
post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by tackyrama 

Choke Cherry Jelly is God's gift to mankind! It is so gooood!


I had to look at your name and see if you were from MN.  We recently attended a conference in MN and recieved a gift basket of MN goodies... one item was a jar of choke cherry jelly.  I haven't tried it yet, I'd never heard of it before.  Guess I better try it soon!  What are choke cherries?  We actually got two jars, b/c one lady flew there, so she couldn't take the jelly jar back on the airplane home so she gave it to us.

Mama to a zoo!    Rowdy boys: ages 12, 8 & 4  and their sweet sisters ages 6 and 2!   Family pets include 6 laying EE's and their beautiful EE Roo, 2 beautiful BO gals, a couple cheeky spunky white silkie bantams (recently adopted), and 2 wonderful rambunxious 6 month old puppies.   See their photos at www.myspsace.com/heathersfunnyfarm  click on "pics" under the profile picture (an EE)
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Mama to a zoo!    Rowdy boys: ages 12, 8 & 4  and their sweet sisters ages 6 and 2!   Family pets include 6 laying EE's and their beautiful EE Roo, 2 beautiful BO gals, a couple cheeky spunky white silkie bantams (recently adopted), and 2 wonderful rambunxious 6 month old puppies.   See their photos at www.myspsace.com/heathersfunnyfarm  click on "pics" under the profile picture (an EE)
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post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by BowChickaBowMow 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tackyrama 

Choke Cherry Jelly is God's gift to mankind! It is so gooood!


I had to look at your name and see if you were from MN.  We recently attended a conference in MN and recieved a gift basket of MN goodies... one item was a jar of choke cherry jelly.  I haven't tried it yet, I'd never heard of it before.  Guess I better try it soon!  What are choke cherries?  We actually got two jars, b/c one lady flew there, so she couldn't take the jelly jar back on the airplane home so she gave it to us.


Choke cherries are a wild type of cherry. It is a small shrub type tree. They will be just loaded with almost black berries about 1/4 to 3/8" in late summer. I like them picked fresh also many people do not like them fresh as they really pucker your mouth and have a large seed with not a great deal of pulp. However they make the most delicious jelly! When I was a youngster we would gather them by the pail full but now are harder to find as it seems a lot of farmers are trying to eradicate them.

"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
Reply
"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
Reply
post #5 of 7

Thanks!  I like sour things, I'd better share a jar w/ my mom, as I think she'd love it as well!

Mama to a zoo!    Rowdy boys: ages 12, 8 & 4  and their sweet sisters ages 6 and 2!   Family pets include 6 laying EE's and their beautiful EE Roo, 2 beautiful BO gals, a couple cheeky spunky white silkie bantams (recently adopted), and 2 wonderful rambunxious 6 month old puppies.   See their photos at www.myspsace.com/heathersfunnyfarm  click on "pics" under the profile picture (an EE)
Reply
Mama to a zoo!    Rowdy boys: ages 12, 8 & 4  and their sweet sisters ages 6 and 2!   Family pets include 6 laying EE's and their beautiful EE Roo, 2 beautiful BO gals, a couple cheeky spunky white silkie bantams (recently adopted), and 2 wonderful rambunxious 6 month old puppies.   See their photos at www.myspsace.com/heathersfunnyfarm  click on "pics" under the profile picture (an EE)
Reply
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

Well I picked some choke cherries this afternoon, my sil helped pit them and we made some syrup for pancakes in the morning. It tastes familiar, so I think IHOP might have some type of syrup like it on the tables. lol

Tell me there's not an easier way to pit and juice wild cherries than squishing them individually? Because THAT sucked...

You wish you were as awesome as me.
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You wish you were as awesome as me.
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post #7 of 7

Whoaa! You made a lot of work out of it. Just boil whole (just cover with water) then mash through a seive and then strain with cheese cloth. You can strain the pulp too but we never do. Enjoy!


Edited by tackyrama - 9/5/08 at 3:53pm
"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
Reply
"Strap yourself to a tree with roots - You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
Bob Dylan
One dear wife, 17 grandkids, 4 dogs, many cats, 70+ chickens, 2 geese, 3 turkeys, 11 horses, 10 pigs
Reply
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