Laura lives and works in North London under the name of Lamb and Fox. She does commissioned personalized artwork as well as prints, cards and original sketches that she sells from her Etsy shop.
Here Laura shares her love for the bejeweled rose hip and the culinary treasures it provides – enjoy!
Autumn! I love this time of year. I am very lucky to have an allotment, where at the moment vegetables and fruit are abundant with gems ready to be picked, eaten or preserved.
My allotment is a little haven of nature which is an important part of my work as an illustrator and artist. Animals, plants, trees always feature somewhere within my artwork so there is nothing I like more than spending time amongst my growing vegetables and fruit with the birds and occasional fox for company!
I have an old Dog Rose that came with the plot. It produces the most marvelous rose hips every year. I am fascinated by these wild ruby red fruits. Jam packed with vitamin C, they make an excellent preserve. They can always be found easily in hedgerows – so start foraging, you can’t miss them.
Last year I incorporated them into a fruit jam but this year I felt like having a go at a jelly. In between designing a logo and jam label yesterday, I picked 2 lbs of rose hips as well as 3 lbs of rosy red eating apples from the very sunny allotment. This is the recipe that I used to make the jelly.
Rose Hip and Apple Jelly
1 lb rose hips
2 lbs apples eating or cooking
About 800 – 1kg sugar
* Chop the rough ends off the rosehips and roughly chop the apples. No need to skin or core as the skin provides the pectin that is needed to set the jelly.
* Put into a food processor and whizz.
* Place into a saucepan and fill with water so it just covers the fruit & simmer the mixture until soft (it takes about an hour for the rosehips to get soft)
* Remove from the heat.
* Cover a colander with a scaled jelly bag or muslin and sit that over a good size bowl.
* Place your rose hip and apple mixture inside.
* Leave overnight allowing the juice to seep through slowly.
* The next day measure the amount of juice you have. This will determine how much sugar you should use. The general rule is 600 ml juice to 450 g sugar.
* Slowly heat the juice (don’t boil yet). Add the sugar slowly until dissolved.
* Once dissolved, boil rapidly without stirring for about 10 minutes or until setting point has been reached (take a teaspoon of the hot mixture and put onto a cool saucer, if it wrinkles when you push your finger through, its done!)
* Have your freshly sterilized jars ready (4 to 5 jars) then pot and seal. WOO!
* Then you can label, I’m using my recently designed one! You will not be disappointed with the taste or the colour – just gorgeous!
Rosehip and apple jelly is delicious served on buttered bread or toast but can also (so I’ve been told) be served with chicken or pork. It is also rather good if you have a sore throat. One teaspoon of the stuff seems to soothe the soreness, my daughter Izi has tried this and can vouch for it!
Laura Roberts Bevan produces beautiful illustrations, artwork and handmade wonders. She writes about them on her glorious blog Lamb & Fox: www.lambandfox.com
You can buy Laura’s beatiful creations, including the jam pot labels featured in this blog post at her etsy shop:
Alternatively contact Laura for any enquiries and commisioned work : firstname.lastname@example.org