Monday, 8 August 2016

It's Blackberry Season Again.

Still warm, homemade blackberry jam dolloped over vanilla ice cream.

Bob had espied another secret location of blackberry bushes and had firstly asked permission of their owner and secondly made me come along to pick them. Yesterday was the day.

He had stumbled onto a bank of lushious and plum berries but needn't have worried about keeping it a secret as the location of them was not for the faint of heart. Cunningly, he wore trainers instead of his usual Crocs and conveniently forgot to mention that I should wear closed and sturdy shoes.

He had been working on a set of vines last week and half way down their row, had found this blackberry paradise. The vines in question are on the steepest part of our Eisenberg where even a tractor wouldn't dare be wheeled about. Steep and dangerous in Birkenstocks, or any other shoes for that matter.

By the way, I couldn't take any photos as it was steep and my hands were extremely sticky too. Sunday morning saw us collecting one and a half kilograms of blackberries ( that is what our jam recipe needs ) in the most spectacular setting and it took us about 15 minutes.

Driving back, we stopped at our local grocer to buy some vanilla ice cream and then home to start the jamming. Really, it is the easiest bit of culinary work there is.

  • Clean and boil the jam jars for a few minutes.
  • Weigh the fruit and then put into a big pot and sprinkle a packet of sugar ( Prepacked with the pectin in it. You can buy the various mixes...1/1, 2/1 and 3/1. We always use the latter which means 3 parts fruit and 1 part sugar )
  • Let the fruit mixture slowly melt and come to a boil. Then simmer it for 8 minutes and that's that.
  • Put the hot jam liquid into the jars, close them tight and put them upside down to let them set.
Yes, that's all really! Bob and I are often astounded, amazed and puzzled at the fact that so few people make their own jams. Firstly it's much better tasting, secondly you know what's in it and thirdly, it is much cheaper than the bought stuff.

If those three points didn't convince you to give jamming a shot, then maybe this will. Just picture in your mind the taste combination of warm homemade blackberry jam dolloped over a cup of delicious vanilla ice cream? Not to mention the brilliant colour combination...