To those of you who aren't familiar with Oakland, you might be surprised to know that there are wild blackberry brambles in several parts of the city (we also have a serious deer problem, which I may or may not have told you about... more on that later).
On one of our walks recently, D and I noticed a very prolific patch of them and made a mental note to return when they ripen. So yesterday, we marched right down there with our bucket (and ladder, maybe) and got to pickin'. In half an hour, we picked about seven cups of beautifully wild blackberries! (I think the movement is called "foraging," and while very trendy a term, it still sounds like "scrounging" to me...so I say "wild")
These guys were a little fuzzier than regular blackberries, but after a good soaking, the fuzzies came right off.
For a little added interest, I put about one teaspoon of rosewater in the jam. You can find rosewater among the Middle Eastern or Indian products in specialty/ethnic stores. It's not expensive, but it is potent. A little goes a long way! D was worried that even the little tiny teaspoon I did add was too much, but it's actually just right.
Look how gorgeous and deep the color is!
And now it's officially summer, now that we've canned something. Sidenote: This is my all-time favorite size/shape/brand of jar, in case anyone cares. Simple design (no cornucopias embossed on the other side), not too big, not too little, nice and wide, easy to pour into, easy to get jam out.
Oh, yeah. Fruits of our labor.
Wild/Foraged/Scrounged/Organic Oakland Blackberry and Rosewater Jam