Warm weather at the end of summer has led to a bumper blackberry harvest. I made the most of it and collected a good sized haul. This is my first attempt at making my own Blackberry Jam and it’s delicious!!
A Note on Hot Water Bath Canning
I’ve been looking into preserving some of my home grown produce this year. It’s been quite a learning curve!
Old fashioned British jam making is just making the jam and pouring it into a clean jar. The jar is sealed to keep out dirt and bacteria.
Hot Water Bath canning is putting that jar in a bath of water and boiling it to kill most of the bacteria. Because some bacteria still survive the process this is only considered safe for high acid foods like jams, pickles and some tomato based recipes.
Pressure canning is the same thing but the bath is kept under pressure which effectively increases the temperature and kills more types of bacteria. This method is the only approved (by the FDA) method for preserving low acid foods such and vegetables, meat and dairy.
There’s a lot of miss-information on the internet. The American FDA has some quite strict recommendations and most of the reputable US information sources follow this guidance. Reputable British websites however ignore the issue completely and recommend the old fashioned method which the FDA considers to be highly unsafe. It’s confusing knowing which sources to trust.
Maybe if it was just me I’d risk it like many generations before me, but I couldn’t live with myself if I made my children ill from my cooking. It’s just not worth the risk for the few pennies I save.
I’ve decided to invest in an electric hot water bath canner (mostly because I came across one on sale) and stick to high acid foods until I gain some more knowledge and experience. I also decided to invest in the “bible” of canning the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. It really should be called the Complete Book of Hot Water Bath Canning because almost all of the recipes in the book are for hot water bath canning, which is exactly what I wanted.
This Blackberry Jam recipe is inspired by the Choose-a-Berry Preserve recipe in the book.
- 550g Blackberries
- 500g Sugar
How much sugar!?!? I’m fairly new to jam making but that seems like a LOT of sugar!? The amount seems pretty consistent across other blackberry jam recipes so I’ve run with it. I think next year I’ll halve the sugar as the jam was a little on the sweet side for us.
Put the fruit and sugar into a stainless steel pan and bring it to the boil.
Once it’s reached a full rolling boil keep it boiling for 10 minutes – I set a timer for exactly 10 minutes.
Ladle the jam into jars – I’m using old jam jars that I’ve thoroughly cleaned. I treated myself to a set of canning funnels to make this so much easier.
Process in a hot water bath canner at 100 degrees for 15 minutes and leave to cool.
Check the jars have sealed by pushing the button on the lid, it shouldn’t be possible to push it in. If any jars haven’t sealed use them first.
Oh wow, this jam is the best jam I’ve ever tasted. I left a jar in the fridge and baked a fresh loaf of bread for breakfast. The kids kept asking for more and more. I had to stop them from eating the whole jar so I could take the photos for this post.
I’ll definitely be making this again with next year’s blackberries.
I do hope you have enjoyed having a peak at my latest recipe. Pin it to your Pinterest for later.
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A Little Bit About Me . . .
Thank you so much for stopping by my corner little of the interweb. I’m Bridie, mum to two small humans, full time homemaker and full time craftaholic – which totally explains why I’m always short on time!
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