The Chrismas Archives


A recipe from Jane Austen's Christmas by Maria Hubert.
Published by Sutton Publishing 1996

Beeton Christmas dessert offerings
From The Christmas Archives
by Countess Maria Hubert von Staufer

Black Butter would have been a novel recipe indeed, which one of the Austen's wide circle of seafaring family and friends might have brought them.

Take 4 pounds of full ripe apples, and peel and core them. Meanwhile put into a pan 2 pints of sweet cider, and boil until it reduces by half. Put the apples, chopped small, to the cider. Cook slowly stirring frequently, until the fruit is tender, as you can crush beneath the back of a spoon. Then work the apple through a sieve, and return to the pan adding 1lb beaten (granulated) sugar and spices as following, 1 teaspoon clove well ground, 2 teaspoons cinnamon well ground, 1 saltspoon allspice well ground. Cook over low fire for about ¾ hour, stirring until mixture thickens and turns a rich brown. Pour the butter into into small clean jars, and cover with clarified butter when cold. Seal and keep for three months before using. By this time the butter will have turned almost black, and have a most delicious flavour.
© Copyright Maria Hubert von Staufer March 1995