Black Butter

Black Butter

Black Butter, Du Nier Beurre, is a traditional preserve from Jersey, in the Channel Islands, made in vast quantities every November with the island’s apple crop. Local women would get together to peel hundred of pounds of apples, and the fire would be lit in the afternoon and cooking would go on through the night and well into the next day. This is the traditional recipe: you may want to reduce the quantities.

  • 38l (10 gallons) cider
  • 318 kg (700 lb) sweet apples, peeled and cut
  • 9 kg (20 lb) sugar
  • 3 sticks liquorice, finely chopped
  • 24 lemons, sliced
  • 3 lb allspice
  1. Boil the cider in a bachin (a huge cauldron) until it turns to jelly. Add the apples, stirring constantly to prevent sticking. Two hours after the last batch of apples has been stirred in, add the sugar, liquorice and lemons. Stir constantly for 30 hours (yes, 30), adding the spice in the last ten minutes. Store in jars and use in desserts such as bread and butter pudding, crumbles and ice cream, or served on toast, crumpets and scones.

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