Summer is time of blackberries in Tuscany. Forests and undergrowth are plenty of these delicious berries to gather and taste. If you wish to enjoy their flavour also during the cold wintertime, prepare a home-made blackberry jam with is a fantastic idea.
Blackberries are good to taste fresh with sugar and lemon or in a fruit salad. But probably the best thing to do is prepare the jam following traditional recipes. I learned this “easy to make” recipe from my mum. When I was child, my family owned a house in the middle of a chestnut wood in the countryside of Sassetta, a really small village on the Etruscan Coast. I remember that we used to go all together, on Sunday afternoon, across the forest to gather berries. And then with the harvest I helped my mother and grandma to cook the jam.
There are many ways to use blackberry jam
The homemade blackberry jam is healthy and yummy. Our body, to be in health, needs a daily dose of fiber and blackberries are perfect because they contain dietary fiber, vitamin C and vitamin K. The jam is perfect as an energetic breakfast on toasted bread with butter or as Merenda snack with low fat yogurt. And do not forget that you can use it to prepare exquisite fruit tarts or other pastries.
My suggestion, and the way I love the most, is to savour the blackberry jam with homemade Tuscan bread and ricotta cheese. So delicious, I could not stop to eat it.
Easy to make recipe for a delicious blackberry jam.
First thing to do is wash blackberries under running fresh water and dry them well.
Put blackberries into a large saucepan on a medium heat and cook for 20/30 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon and trying to crush them as much as you can to obtain a good mix of juice and pulp. Turn off the fire and leave cool down for few minutes.
Take a potato masher (with tiny holes is perfect) and little by little, crush the mixture. You will remove the most of seeds. Take the mixture of juice and pulp, weigh it and put it back into the saucepan.
Add the sugar to the mixture: for example if you have 4 cups of mixture (2 Lb. /1kg), adds 2.5 cups of sugar (1 Lb. / 0,5 kg).
Place the saucepan on a high heat, bringing the fruit mixture to a full rolling boil (you see bubbles). Then reduce to medium heat and cook for about 60 minutes, sometimes stirring with the wooden spoon, until the mixture become thick.
In the meantime, wash the jars, lids and bands (brand new or old ones) in hot water. Rinse well. Then sterilize them following this way: Take a large pot and cover the bottom with a towel. Put the jars and water inside and boil 10 minutes. Then turn off the burner and leave cool down. Carefully remove the jars from the water, shake out the excess water and transfer upside down to a clean kitchen towel.
Once the jam is ready, pour it still warm into warm jars (they must not be cold to avoid they break. If you need, warm them a little into the oven before to use them). Close the jars and set them upright to rest for about 12 hours before to use it.
A way to understand if jam is ready, is to put a small quantity on a dish, tilt it and see the jam slides. If it slides slowly and has a good compactness, the jam is ready to be placed in the jars.
Store in a cool, dry place up to 1/2 years. Once opened, keep refrigerated and consume within 3/4 days
I have a passion for travels and photography, puzzles and Lego, beer and Fiorentina (both bistecca and football team). Always happy when I get a flight ticket on my hand. Proudly Tuscan, one of my desires is to show people the hidden gems of my birthland!
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