Tag Archives: Blackberries

Black and Blue Jam with Homemade Labels

Blackberry and Blueberry Jam

Blackberry and Blueberry Jam

I have been wanting to make some Black and Blue Jam using blackberries and blueberries. We had a good blackberry crop this summer and when the blueberry prices dropped at the end of the season I stocked up. What I did not use for the jam went into the freezer for more jam, blueberry pancakes and other dishes. Something about cooking or baking with fruits during the cold days of winter brightens my day.
For the Black and Blue Jam, I used the Mixed Berry jam recipe from the Ball Book of Canning: http://www.freshpreserving.com/recipes/mixed-berry-jelly. If you have never canned before pick up Ball’s canning book (that’s how I learned) and start with recipes that call for water bathing such as jellies, tomatoes, pickles, etc. They are easy to master. Then when you’re comfortable you can move on to pressure canning! For the Cherry Jam, I used the Cherry Preserves recipe of Ball’s and added a few tablespoons of my homemade bourbon vanilla.

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I am always looking for new label designs and really like the way brown paper looks but it is expensive to buy. So, I asked for paper bags the last few times I was at the grocery store and used them. Here’s the steps, it’s very easy.
• Take apart the brown paper bag, I didn’t worry about the wrinkles

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• Using a regular sheet of typing paper trace around it on the bag

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• Cut it out and use just like normal copy paper
• You might want to adjust your printer settings to a thicker paper setting such as photo paper
• I set the color settings to Vivid, it helps the colors to be a bit brighter since the paper is dark
• Cut out the label and trim it so the ends overlap just a bit when wrapped around the jar. Dab just a bit of glue (I used an Elmer’s glue stick) in the middle of the back of the label to stick it to the jar then glue the ends together.
Here are the labels that I made. Feel free to use and happy canning.

Download Label design – Blackblue Jam

How to freeze blackberries

Saving the Season

Fruits are now going on sale at the grocer as the growing season is winding down. I have sweet and sour cherry trees in my orchard but damaging storms and birds got more cherries then I did this year so once the price drops down to $1.50 lb. or so I start buying them like crazy to freeze. It’s really nice to be able to pull out a bag of frozen cherries in the winter to add to yogurt or to use in recipes.

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To freeze – wash the cherries, drain and pit. I don’t have a cherry pitter so I just cut up the cherries by hand. It sounds laborious but it’s really not and goes pretty quickly. I’m usually listening to the radio while I’m working in the kitchen so I enjoy the process of harvesting food.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper as it keeps the fruit from sticking to the pan. De-pit the cherries, spread the cut cherries out in the cookie sheet and pop in the freezer for overnight. No need to cover while they’re freezing. When frozen just scoop them up with a large spoon or spatula, put into a freezer bag or a freezer container and label. When you freeze fruit this way, it doesn’t stick together when frozen so it’s easy to take out exactly how much you need. It may take several batches of freezing depending on how many pounds you buy.

The pits and stems can be composted if you have a compost pile going. Between the cows, pig, sheep and chickens on the farm there’s always someone looking for a treat. Miss Piggy the pig, loves fruit so the trimmings go to her. I like that nothing is wasted.

Blackberries can also be frozen in the same manner.
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