Blackberry picking is one of life’s greatest simple pleasures that sweetens the summer’s end. From the plucking of the big juicy jewels, to the accompanying blackberry stained fingers: what could be better? Perhaps only this easy and delicious blackberry and vanilla jam recipe!
Last week my toddler and I picked a big bowl of blackberries from some wild growing blackberry bushes only a few yards from my home. Food miles – zero!
After eating a few, I wondering what to do with my foraged finds. My thoughts quickly turned to jam – that indulgent pleasure that brightens up your morning toast no end, and is a great way of preserving fruit right the way through the winter. I wanted to add an extra kick to my jam, so I thought vanilla might add that extra something something. Turned out I was right – blackberry and vanilla jam makes for a delicious indulgence!
Before I made jam for the first time several years ago, I thought it was a long-winded and laborious process. I had watched my gran make jam many years ago when I was a small child, which seemed to take hours and an awful lot of stirring. Thinking back, my gran wouldn’t have used pectin so it would have taken a long long time to get the jam to set to the right consistency. Thankfully, jam sugar (sugar with added pectin) is readily available speeding the whole process up to just minutes!
Blackberry and Vanilla Jam Recipe
Some Blackberry Picking Tips
Cover your arms and legs unless you want some nice scratches.
Try not to pick from the sides of busy roads – heavy metals can get in to them, which isn’t too pleasant.
Don’t pick from ground level – they may be covered in dog wee.
Don’t pick too high – keep those ones for the birds.
Don’t wash them until you need to use them, otherwise they’ll go soggy.
Keep them in the fridge and use within 24 hours because they spoil quickly.
The best time to pick is from the end of August through to the end of September. Superstition holds that after the end of September the devil urinates on them, but the truth is that they just don’t taste nice come October.
Will you be jamming this autumn? If you do then I dare you to try and not sing Jammin’ by Bob Marley as you make your jam. I have tried many times and found it’s downright impossible! What jam will you be making?