Monday, September 14, 2009

Best Uses For Blackberries

Before blackberry season came to an abrupt end for me two weeks ago, my bushes were bursting with fruit. I figure between my friends and I, we harvested over 4 gallons of berries throughout the month of August. Here's some of the ways we came up with to use all these berries:

Blackberry Scones - These are a little trickier than blueberry scones. The trick to preventing purple batter with blueberries is to toss them with a couple tablespoons of flour until they're coated, but this does not work blackberries. Blackberries are not very cohesive, and there is no way to prevent them from getting all squished up in the batter and making a sticky mess. Maybe I'll try freezing them first next time. Nonetheless, they were quite tasty.

Blackberry Milkshake - This very simple treat was a favorite of Yann's. It's just ice cream, milk and blackberries in a blender.

Blackberry Jelly - This was my first attempt at canning. I strained the blackberries to remove the seeds and leave mostly juice, then cooked it with Sure-Jell and tons of sugar.

Blackberry Cobbler - My friends Karen and Chris came over last month to pick blackberries. A week later, they invited me over to their house for pizza and served blackberry cobbler for dessert. It was delicious!

Blackberry Margarita - Originally, I just tossed a handful of fresh blackberries in the blender with Margarita fixins, and it turned out delightful. Then I made them a little more elaborate by puréeing the berries and straining out the seeds then premixing this with the alcoholic ingredients and lime so they can be preserved in the freezer indefinitely. Now I have over a half gallon of this premix in my freezer ready to just add ice and Sweet-and-Sour in the blender.

Blackberry Dessert Topping - The quickest thing to do was just rinse a pint of berries and stir them up in a bowl with a few tablespoons of sugar and leave them in the fridge overnight to get syrupy. I spooned this over ice cream, French toast, and crêpes.

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