July 31, 2009

Blackberry Jam

In the middle of winter, when the wind is blowing and the snow is piling up in drifts, there is nothing that is more rewarding than popping open a jar of homemade blackberry jam.

I say this about a lot of home grown, home preserved things. But it might be the most true about blackberry jam.

Jam is really easy to make and can. And quick. You can make a batch of jam in less than an hour, including clean up time! If I have plenty of berries I make extra batches blackberry jam. One year when it wasn't a very good summer for blackberries I was glad to have made extra jars of it the year before.

And don't forget, a jar of homemade jam makes a delightful gift!
If you purchase a box of powdered pectin you will find a simple recipe, including detailed instructions for home canning jams, inside the box of pectin. I have never had a failure following these instructions. But there is a lovely recipe in The Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving that I also like to use. It is labeled "Chocolate Raspberry Sundae Topper." It turns out just like jam. I substitute blackberries for the raspberries since they have similar acidity. I call it "Chocolate Blackberry Jam." The subtle taste of cocoa in this jam is divine.

One thing is for certain. When berry season is over, you will be glad to have made either one of these jams.

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