Forage in the hedgerow for ingredients to make this delightful summer sauce.


  • 500g Elderberries remove stems and any green berries
  • 500g Mix of blackberries, hawthorn haws and/or crab apples
  • 3 Shallots, chopped
  • 2tsp Salt
  • 300ml Red wine vinegar
  • 250g Light muscovado sugar

For the spice bag

  • 3 Dried chillies
  • 1tsp Black peppercorns
  • 1tsp Mustard seeds
  • A small piece of fresh ginger cut into thin slices
  • 1 Cinnamon stick broken in half
  • 4 Pared strips of lime zest


  • STEP 1

    Wash your bottles in hot soapy water, rinse well and leave upside-down to dry. Wash the fruit and then tip into a large pan with the shallots, salt and vinegar. Measure the spice bag ingredients on to a square of muslin, tie with kitchen string and add to the pan.

  • STEP 2

    Bring slowly to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer very gently, partially covered, for 30mins until all the fruit is softened. Remove the spice bag and press the mixture through a plastic sieve to remove seeds and tough skins.

  • STEP 3

    Put your bottles in a moderate oven (180ºC/160ºC fan/gas 4) for 10mins. Return the ketchup mixture to the rinsed-out pan and add the sugar. Bring to the boil, stirring, then boil hard for 8-10mins until thick and syrupy. Decant into your warm bottles, seal and label. Your delicious hedgerow ketchup will keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.