Peel, stone and quarter a peck of peaches and put over the fire with a cupful of water. A dozen cracked peach pits added to the fruit will improve the flavor of the jelly. Cook steadily until the peaches are broken and soft; strain and return the juice to the fire, with the strained juice of a lemon for every three pounds of fruit. Let it boil for twenty minutes, and add a pound of heated sugar for every pint of the juice. When it boils up once more, remove from the fire and fill the glasses.
Cut juicy crabapples into quarters and put over the fire in a preserving kettle. Cover; bring slowly to a boil and stew for several hours, or until broken all to pieces. Strain and press without squeezing, through a jelly-bag, and proceed as with peach jelly. The juice procured by squeezing what is left in the bag will make a good second-best jelly, well flavored but not clear.
Wash a quart of cranberries, drain them and put them into a double boiler with the moisture still clinging to them. Cover and cook until broken to pieces. Turn the fruit into a jelly-bag and squeeze hard to extract all the juice. Measure this, and to a quart of it add four cups of granulated sugar. Return to the fire, boil up once, and turn into a mold wet with cold water. It should form into a firm jelly.
Cut the rhubarb into inch lengths, and to two quarts of this add a scant cup of water. Put into a porcelain-lined kettle, cover closely and simmer until very soft. Put a small quantity at a time into a jelly-bag and squeeze out all the juice. Measure this and return to the kettle and fire. Allow a pound of granulated sugar for each pint of juice. Heat the sugar in pans in the oven, taking care that it does not scorch or melt. Boil the juice for ten minutes, adding, as it cooks, a little lemon juice. At the end of twenty minutes add the hot sugar slowly, that it may not lump, and as soon as it is dissolved pour the jelly into glasses that have been dipped in hot water. When firm and cool, cover, first with tissue paper that has been dipped in brandy, then with tin covers, or with stiff paper securely fastened down.
Quarter without peeling or coring them, tart, juicy apples. Drop the apples, as you cut them, into cold water. When all are done put the fruit, with the moisture upon it, in the preserving kettle, and simmer very gently until the juice flows freely. Boil slowly until the apples are tender and broken. Turn, a little at a time, into a flannel jelly-bag, and allow the juice to drip through. If the bag is squeezed the jelly will be cloudy. Measure the juice and to each pint of it allow a pound of granulated sugar. Put the sugar in pans in the oven to heat. Return the juice to the fire and boil for twenty minutes; skim it, pour into it the sugar and stir until this is dissolved, bring again to the boil, and remove the kettle from the fire. Set jelly glasses on a wet cloth to prevent their cracking, and fill at once.