Love That Blackberry Jam! – Guest Post and Giveaway
My husband grew up in the country. His parents still live on Smoking Possum Farm (yes, there’s a story behind the name that has to do with a possum who slowly wandered out of the annual burn pile all aflame). My in-laws have blackberries and boysenberries. They are incredibly delicious. They’re a bit of a pain to pick (hello really sharp thorns), but they are really the best blackberries ever!
My in-laws are also really great. I know people talk about terrible in-laws… I’m happy to report that I’m not one of them. I truly enjoy being with them and feel blessed to be a part of their family. (And, no, I’m not just saying that because I know they’re going to read this. Honest.) My dad-in-law is a great pie baker and jam maker. Over Thanksgiving I got to partake in the jam making. What fun! I think I came home with about 20 jars of jam, most of which (to Husband’s dismay) were given as Christmas gifts. (To those they were given to, yes, he likes you… he may like the jam more. You’ll have to talk to him about this, if it’s a problem for you.) I asked why they started making the jam. Simply, he said they make it because it’s so good, and it’s a great way to use the leftovers from the farmers’ markets. That’s reason enough for me. If you’ve tried it, you understand why. If you haven’t, I hope you get to some day soon!
Maybe really soon. My wonderful in-laws have graciously agreed to give away a precious jar of jam to one lucky reader.
YOU COULD WIN SOME OF THIS JAM!!!
To enter, simply leave a comment on this blog post.
One entry per person. Contest closes April 9th at 9am (PST).
Winner will be chosen using random.org. Open to residents of the United States (sorry – don’t want to have jam confiscated at customs or anything!).Ã‚
This contest is now closed.
The winner of the jam is Jennifer!!!
(You were the first person to enter, and random.org chose #1!)
Please contact me with your mailing address and I’ll send you your jam!!
Now, back to the jam making…
Here’s Dad to tell you how to make it for yourself.
Blackberry, Boysenberry, and Olallieberrie Jam from the Farm.
|Oberg Blackberry Jam||
- 8 cups frozen berries (you want about 5 cups of crushed berries)
- 7 cups of sugar
- 1 box fruit pectin
- Rinse the berries and measure out about 8 cups for frozen, since you want about 5 cups of crushed berries. Fresh berries can be crushed and measured that way.
- Measure out 7 cups of sugar into a separate container but do not pour it into fruit yet.
- Use a potato masher to crush the berries in a 6 or 8 quart pot. Stir in one box of fruit pectin. (I tried liquid pectin below, since the store was out of dry since it’s not really canning season, and I didn’t like it as well, plus it changes this recipe.)
- Bring the fruit and pectin mixture to a full rolling boil (a boil that can’t be stopped by stirring) on high heat, stirring constantly. Stir in the sugar fairly quickly, and return the mixture to a full rolling boil and then boil for exactly 1 minute, still stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat and then we pour the berry mix into some sort of pitcher to fill the jars since that’s easier than ladling the fruit into jars as most directions say. Just be very careful as you pour the big pot of boiling berry mix into the pitcher, because if it spills it can be really dangerous.
- Fill the clean jars within 1/4 inch of the top, and making sure the rim is clean, put on a lid and ring. The lids have been in a small saucepan of boiling water, and can be drained but we usually keep them in the hot water until we place them on the jar. They always seal that way.
- Let the jars cool, and check to make sure they have all cooled by pressing on the lid. Make sure they don’t pop. If some haven’t, just refrigerate them and use them first. Try to let the jars sit for a few hours until they’re cool, and then store them in a cool, dry place.
We usually use frozen berries since those are what we have left over from our Farmer’s Markets. Fresh berries will work the same.
I have cut the above sugar recipe to 5 cups, so there is more fruit than sugar, and it usually sets fine. We have had some batches not gel too well, but that can be used for pancake syrup.
We usually get about 4-5 pints out of this recipe. The box says 9 cups.
(This is basically the recipe in the pectin box, Sure-Gel.)
This recipe can be adjusted for low or no sugar, or honey or fruit juice sweetening. Ã‚ Just buy “Low or no sugar” pectin and follow the directions in the box. Ã‚ We’ve had good luck with all of the above. Ã‚ The nice purple color of the jam looks a little washed out without sugar, but it’s probably more healthy in most cases.
A few photos of the process.
Mashing the berries.
Ã‚ Rolling Boil
Pouring into jars.
Lids on and sealing.