There are wild blackberry patches all over Sonoma County. All along the roadways, trails and any place that they can find a place to sprout. We have a patch growing along the property line by the old shed and the chicken coop. Grandpa regularly prunes it and has to keep digging up volunteer canes that pop up many feet away from the main bush. They are VERY prickly!
We have been harvesting for about the last month or so. We lay them in pie tins in one layer in the freezer and once they are frozen, place them in freezer bags so they don’t stick together. The freezer is jam-packed with all the current preserving activity at Harchut Farms so I decided to make Wild Blackberry Jam today.
I found the perfect low-sugar recipe in the canning book that your mom sent to us this season: Tart and Sweet by Kelly Geary and Jessie Knadler: 16 cups blackberries, 1 cup sugar, grated zest and juice of 1 lemon. How simple is that? The hardest part was stirring while the beautiful berries were bubbling away.
The recipe indicated the yield would be seven half-pints. I strained it a bit more to remove more of the seeds and ended up with six half-pints. Not bad for the first batch. There will be many more jars to come as the berries are abundant.