Blackberry Recipes - Jam and Other Uses Cwmbran

Blackberries are wholesome and nutritious. They have good amounts of vitamin C and the seeds are rich in vitamin E. There are lots of easy ways to prepare them and they are easy to find throughout August and September.

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Blackberry Recipes - Jam and Other Uses

Some Easy Blackberry Recipes

blackberry recipes - fresh blackberries

Picture: blackberries are a fabulous ingredient for many easy recipes

Easy Blackberry Recipes

Perhaps the easiest thing to do with all those luscious blackberries is to make jam, or coulis. But there are plenty of other options, too.

Blackberries are wholesome and nutritious. They have good amounts of vitamin C and the seeds are rich in vitamin E. There are lots of easy ways to prepare them and they are easy to find throughout August and September.

There are still some around in October, and even later some years, though the quality is not generally so good with later fruit. It's even quite a pleasant task collecting them, apart from the odd scratch, of course. Pick on a dry day after a dryish spell.

Pick the bright shiny looking ones. If they are over-ripe they start to lose their shine.

Don't pick near roads because of the pollutants which may affect the fruit. Roadside berries may be larger, however, because of the increased levels of CO2. It's certainly worth avoiding any field margins where crops may have been sprayed with toxic chemicals.

Of course you can use fresh commercial or home grown fruit equally well. You can get blackberries earlier in the year from fruit farms.

Easy Blackberry Recipes: first, jam. Jam is very easy to make and it can be used as an ingredient in its own right.

Here's an easy recipe for blackberry jam.

First rinse the blackberries for a few moments under running water. After all, flies are quite fond of them, too!

Remove any stalks or over-ripe fruit and then weigh them.

Put the washed and weighed fruit into a heavy saucepan. Cast iron is ideal. Traditional brass preserving pans are OK but they do tend to leave a slight taste from the metal, which can't be good. Cast iron, on the other hand, actually provides us with traces of iron which our bodies can use to bolster iron levels in the blood.

Add 1 pound of sugar for each pound of fruit. Heat slowly until the sugar dissolves, stirring all the time. When the sugar has totally dissolved you will not be able to feel it when you press the tip of a wooden spoon into the mix. If you feel a slight crunch, or grittiness, keep stirring!

When you are sure it's all dissolved, turn up the heat until the jam mix boils freely. You will find that it rises up in the pan and gets quite frothy.

Skim off any scummy looking froth from time to time.

Finding the setting point

Start testing for setting point by dropping a little of the mix onto a cold plate. The jam is set when it wrinkles as you push it sideways with the tip of a spoon or your finger tip.

If you want to be sure that the jam does not become over-cooked, you should take the pan off the heat while you test for the setting point.

When setting point is reached turn off the heat and bottle the jam.

Bottling

You must used sterilised and hot jars for this, otherwise you risk the jam cracking the pots. Sterilisation is important to sto...

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