You can spot blackberries growing on quieter roads near countryside, the marshes, nature reserves, Hollow Ponds and all the different areas of Epping forest. They are normally ready for picking from early to mid August. See below for a blackberry jam recipe!
Alternatively, leftover blackberries can be frozen in freezer bags then whizzed in a food processor with apple juice and a banana to make an instant smoothie, or the mixture can be poured in to ice lolly moulds to have later. Frozen blackberries can also be whizzed with some yoghurt and honey to make quick ice cream.
Blackberry jam (makes 2-3 jars)
This jam is really straightforward to make and tastes delicious! You can recycle old glass jam jars to store it in. It’s great on toast and swirled through porridge or yoghurt. For an instant cheesecake, top digestive biscuits with soft cheese mixed with sugar, and a dollop of blackberry jam.
- 800g blackberries
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 500g jam sugar with pectin (readily available)
Finely chop half the blackberries and mash the rest in to a pulp. Mix together then add the lemon juice and sugar. Mix again then leave to stand for 1 hour to draw out the juices.
Put in a saucepan and boil on a high bubbling heat for 8 minutes, skimming any foam off the surface.
Meanwhile, sterilise your jam jars by washing them then putting the jars and lids in the oven at 140 degrees/gas mark 1 for 10 minutes (or a dishwasher cycle).
Leave the jam to cool for 10 minutes then fill the jam jars (the jam will thicken as it continues to cool). Stored in a cool, dark place for up to one year. Once opened refrigerate and use within 3 weeks.