Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Seedless Blackberry and Elderberry Jam

Foraging time is on us again and seeing as these two berries always seem to live in close proximity to each other, why not combine them in a jam.

It's difficult to give precise measurements and weights for this jam, it depends how juicy the berries are that you use. The important thing is that you get the sugar to juice ratio correct as detailed in step 4

You need:

Approx 900g/2lb Blackberries
Approx 900g/2lb Elderberries
Jam Sugar - between 900g/2lb and 1800g/4lb. Depends on the juice in the berries
3-4 tablespoons Lemon Juice

1. Wash the berries well and then drain. Remove the Elderberries from their branches/twigs by stripping them off with a fork.

2. Put both lots of berries into a large preserving pan or large saucepan and cook over a low heat until they turn to a soft pulp. Press the berries as they cook to speed the process along and to extract as much juice as possible. If you are using very ripe berries, proceed to the next step. If the berries are still holding their shape, or are not very juicy, you can blitz them quickly in a blender at this point.

3. Now rub the pulp through a sieve using the back of a spoon or the back of a ladle. The aim is to extract the juice and leave behind the seeds/pips.

4. Very Important! - Measure the resulting juice. To each 600ml of juice, add 450g of Jam Sugar and 1 tablespoon of Lemon Juice. You may not need all the sugar that you have set aside for this recipe....

5. Heat the juice/sugar/lemon until the sugar has dissolved, then whack the heat up and boil rapidly until setting point is reached.

Ladle into hot, sterilised jars and seal.

Depending on the berries, this could make anywhere between 2.5lb and 4lb of tasty Jam.

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