Sparks picked more than two gallons of blackberries last week, in preparation for my parents’ visit this weekend. My mother had specifically requested blackberry jam and a blackberry Rough & Ready pie; Sparks has a source of nice crabapples and wanted to make blackberry-crabapple jelly as well as some plain crabapple jelly.
On Saturday morning, the marathon began.
Blackberries were cooked and put through a food mill to remove most of the seeds, turning them from the above,
Into this–nice smooth blackberry pulp.
Then they followed the instructions on the Sure-Jell packet and made jam. Sparks was interested in trying to make jam the old-fashioned way, without added pectin, but my mother says that the Sure-Jell makes it gel with less cooking, which leads to a better-tasting product. We’re all about better-tasting.
Next up were the crabapples… seventeen pounds of them. Only five pounds were used in making a batch of crabapple jelly. Now this almost certainly would have jelled by itself–it was congealing in the pot they added sugar–but they added Sure-Jell anyway just to be sure, and the result was nice and firm (but not too firm).
Also a delicious pink color. My parents were skeptical about the flavor of the jelly, but the proof was in the eating and everyone likes it a lot.
The pie was my jurisdiction. I used my Rough & Ready recipe, and decorated the top with flowers and a cat.