Sunday, July 13, 2014

Wild Blackberry Crab Apple Sauce

This is a very versatile recipe depending on the amount of ingredients that you have. You can use crab apples or green apples. I pick my crab apples before they are considered ripe because there is more pectin in them. I use this recipe to make both jelly and apple sauce. The juice that I drain will become jelly while the apple pulp becomes the apple sauce.

Wild Blackberry Crab Apple Sauce

2 plastic grocery bags filled with crab apples or green apples 
1 gallon bag of wild blackberries (can be frozen) 
Lemon juice 


Clean the crab apples by removing the stem and the flower at the other end. If you let them sit on your counter for at least a day, the stems dry out and are easier to just pull off. If you get a stubborn one, when you cut the apple in half and it comes right out. You can also scrape the end flower bud off easily with your finger nail. (Just fyi, this can be done while hanging out with the kids watching television!) 

Remove any blemishes on the apples and cut in half. As you cut in half, put the halves into a bowl of water to prevent turning brown. If using regular size green apples, just cut into chunks. Add apples and blackberries into a large pot. Fill with water to just below the level of fruit. Simmer until apples are soft and berries have popped (I simmered 45 minutes to an hour). Lightly mash to help release pectin. 

Drain apple mixture saving liquid to make jelly (this may require several more drains to clear the liquid for jelly). For apple sauce: using a food mill (I use a hand crank Foley), process the apple pulp to remove the skin and seeds. Measure the raw apple sauce. For every cup, add 1/4 cup of sugar. More if you prefer sweeter. For every six cups, add a tablespoon of lemon juice. Bring mixture to a boil. Fill your sterilized jars and water bath for twenty minutes.

Blackberry Crab Apple Jelly 


Liquid from above processing


Drain the liquid in the colander again only this time line with coffee filters or use a jelly bag or even a clean pillow case.

Put liquid into a clean pot. For every cup of liquid add a cup of sugar. Boil for about 25 minutes and occasionally stirring and removing film. Test with a spoon from the freezer. You will begin to see the cooled liquid on the spoons gelling. 

Can jelly using a hot water bath for ten minutes.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Raw Packed Wild Blackberries in Blackberry Sauce Canning Recipe!

Since blackberry season is in full swing, its time for canning!  We love fruit cobblers in our house so one of the blackberry recipes that I wanted to complete is raw packed blackberries in a blackberry sauce.  I like to raw pack them in the jar so that the berry still looks like a berry when I open the can.  A sauce made of blackberries is not absolutely necessary to raw pack them.  You can also use a heated sugar and water syrup.  However, since I have an abundance of blackberries, I want that added punch of blackberry flavor.  This recipe does not use a thickener since the final recipe will not need additional thickness, plus it is such a pain to order clear gel since no one carries it.

Also, if you like a blackberry syrup, you can stop before you add the raw berries and just can the syrup.  It's great as well.

Raw Packed Wild Blackberries in Blackberry Sauce


8 quarts of blackberries (separated into 3 qts and 5 qts)
8 cups of sugar
1/2 cup lemon juice


Rinse and place 3 quarts (12 cups) of blackberries in a crockpot.

Add sugar and lemon juice.  Mix.

Cook on low for 1 1/2 hours covered, mixing about every half hour.

Remove top and cook on high 3-4 hours mixing every half hour.

Using a blender or stick blender, blend berry mixture.

Strain in a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds.  Save syrup.

Meanwhile, prepare 20 half pints or 10 pint jars.

Rinse remaining 5 quarts (20 cups) of blackberries. Place blackberries in jars, filling snugly without crushing.

Pour syrup over berries leaving 1/2 inch for headspace.

Add lids and rings.

Waterbath 15 minutes at a full boil. Final quantity results may vary depending on the size of blackberries.

Final result is whole berries in a dark syrup!

For an easy Cobbler recipe:


1 vanilla boxed cake mix
1 large can of crushed pineapple, undrained
2 half pints or 1 pint of blackberries in syrup
1 - 2 sticks of butter (enough to cover cake mix)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 9X13 pan.  Pour crushed pineapple and blackberries into pan and mix. 

Sprinkle cake mix evenly over fruit mixture.  Cut butter into small pats and place evenly around the cake mix.  Pats of butter should not be next to each other but close.

Bake 25 - 30 minutes until top is golden brown. Serve with vanilla ice cream!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Blackberry Season Has Arrived!

Last week the wild blackberries were sporadically ripe.  This week they are ripening faster than I can pick them! So if you live in the South, go find some blackberries! These were growing near my post office.

Wild blackberries and a few wild plums!