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Red Isabella grape jam recipe

Isabella grape jam recipe

Have you ever tasted Isabella grape?


Red Isabella grape jam recipe

Isabella grape: the origin

It is a cross between two grape varieties and was imported from the United States in the first half of the 19th century when the phylloxera epidemic, a disease that attacks vines, hit European vines hard.

The Isabella grape, both for table and wine, is either red or white.
Depending on the variety, the intensity of its aroma and sweetness change, but the characteristics that make it unique are its intense aroma and flavor reminiscent of strawberries (in Italy it is called uva fragola that is strawberry!).

It is widespread in northern Europe. And, in Italy, especially in the Alps, where some people still produce a few bottles of fragolino wine.

In Italy, fragolino wine has not been commercialized since 1931.
For this reason, those who use these grapes to make wine do so for personal consumption or trade it illegally.

Many years ago, I had the opportunity to taste white fragolino that the owner of a famous wine shop, whose name I will not mention, served only to loyal customers.
Today it is not easy to find this wine.

And it is not easy to find the jam either. To me, this is a good reason to make it from yourself.


Red Isabella grape jam recipe

Isabella grape jam

This variety is less common today.
Moreover, the tradition of homemade jams is no longer so strong either.
Mixing these two factors, it is easy to understand why this jam has been somewhat forgotten.

But you are on the blog of a passionate home cook who tries to carry on and tell the story of the recipes even when they seem antiques.

In Emilia-Romagna, the strawberry grape, or Isabella, was very common. So much so that some Bolognese recipe books also mention Fragolino among the wines of the area.

In my vegetable garden, there is also a line of red Isabella grapes.
But the one I used doesn’t come from my countryside but from Romagna, where I spent part of my summer. When I saw it, I couldn’t resist the smell.

I already know that next winter, when I open a jar, it will be like spreading the taste of summer on bread.

Buona cucina, Monica

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Isabella grape

Food tips

To shorten cooking time, add agar-agar, a natural, tasteless gelling substance made from algae. Follow the instructions on the packet.

For a firmer jam, you can even use agar-agar at the end of the traditional procedure I am suggesting.

Isabella grape jam recipe

per 3-4 jars (400ml each one)
The list of Ingredients

1,200 kg of red Isabella grapes
squeezed and filtered juice of one lemon
400 g sugar

what you need: vegetable mill


Remove each grape from the bunch and wash the grapes under running water.

Put the grapes in a saucepan and cook on a small cooker over low heat for about 20 minutes, stirring and crushing the grapes a little.

When the grapes are soft, strain using a vegetable mill (narrower filter) to separate the skins and seeds from the juice.

Put the juice obtained in a pan with the sugar and lemon juice (if you like, you can add a one-half glass of red wine).

Place the pan on a small cooker with low heat and cook for about an hour, stirring occasionally. If like me, you prefer soft jams, not too jelly, it’s ready (in the jar, as it cools, it acquires the right consistency).

Switch off and immediately put into glass jars, close using new caps, and upside down for vacuum formation. Leave the jars upside down until the contents have cooled completely.

If the vacuum has formed correctly, it will keep for about a year.


Homemade jam recipe

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