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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Pickled Blackberries?!

It does seem like we've had a bumper crop of blackberries this season in the Pacific Northwest.  We've gone picking four times already this year and may go again in a couple weeks. Our favorite spot needs time for the new berries to ripen.

Along with my daily blackberry smoothies, a couple of blackberry cobblers,  and the blackberry freezer jam I made, I tried a new recipe, pickled blackberries.  This was my first time pickling anything and I was a little nervous about wasting my precious blackberries so I only made a few small jars to see if  we'd like them.

The recipe I used is as follows:

  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 3 allspice berries
  • ½-inch piece of fresh ginger, thinly sliced
  • 1 small fresh bay leaf
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1/4 onion, chopped into big pieces
  • 6 tbsps sugar
  • 3 tbsps kosher salt
  • 2 cups red wine vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 18 oz. fresh blackberries (about 4 cups), washed and shaken of excess water

  1. Roughly crush the peppercorns, allspice, and juniper berries together with a mortar and pestle (or however you like to crush hard round spices). Place the crushed spices, ginger, bay leaf, sprig of thyme, shallot, sugar, kosher salt, red wine vinegar, and water in a medium saucepan. Bring the brine to a boil, stirring to dissolve the salt and sugar.
  2. Remove the saucepan from the heat and strain the liquid. Let the liquid cool completely or you’ll cook your berries. Discard the spices and aromatics.
  3. Place the berries in a clean canning jars. Pour the cooled pickling liquid over the berries. Cover the jar tightly and refrigerate for at least a week before serving, but 2 or more weeks is preferred. Keeps for up to 3 months refrigerated. Makes 4 cups of pickled blackberries.

The hardest part was waiting for the brine to cool.
Once cool, I poured the brine over the waiting blackberries.

These blackberries will taste great with some soft cheese and crackers.

Or, perhaps replacing pickled cucumbers on burgers or mushrooms burgers.  Yummm!