Le sigh! The last of this years blackberries are coming ripe. We had a good run, but the extreme heat shriveled some of the last of the season. Still, we found plenty to pick out back – and to nibble on as well!
This recipe came out of a “hmmmm” moment. In that pickled foods are even hipper than they should be, with each year passing. But, alas, it is rare that if you do see a super hipster recipe for pickled berries, that it is made for canning. More likely it will be for “refrigerator pickling”. Which is of course the equivalent to making “refrigerator” fresh jam. Easy, great tasting…but doesn’t last long. With that type of pickling, you can only make one batch at a time. Great if all you want is a tiny bit, but I like a few jars to tide me over the long cold months 😉 Pickling that is canned isn’t relatively hard, you just need to follow the basics (ratio of vinegar to water, proper handling) and the sweetness/flavors you can play with.
Which brings me to something else: since we moved into our new house I have noticed how much easier canning is. What used to be an all day project is now an hour or three. Mostly it is due to a great counter layout and having my gear accessible. If all you need to do is grab a few items and get going, suddenly canning seems easy! And with small batch canning, you are not canning 20-30 jars!
Spiced Pickled Canned Blackberries
- 6 to 7 cups blackberries, washed and drained
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup apple cider vinegar (5% acidity)
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ¾ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground allspice
Wash canning jars, with bands and new lids, in hot, soapy water. Rinse well, and drain on a clean kitchen towel. Bring a large pot of water to boil, take off stove, add in clean jars and keep covered.
Fill canning pot halfway with water, bring to a near boil, then let simmer.
Heat sugar, maple syrup, water, vinegar and spices in a tall saucepan to a boil. Reduce heat to medium. Add in blackberries, simmer very gently for 5 minutes.
Drain jars using tongs, place on a clean kitchen towel. Pack in about 1 cup blackberries, gently tap on counter. Pour hot syrup over the top, adding a few more berries if they can fit, then run a sterilized chopstick around the inside of the jar. Top off with more syrup if needed. Leave a ¼” headspace.
Dip a clean paper towel in hot water, then run around the top of each jar. Place a lid on each jar, then a band, screw on finger tight.
Turn canner up to high, place jars in water bath rack, lower rack into water. Water should cover by 1 – 2″, if not add a bit more from the other pot that held the jars. Bring to a rolling boil, covered, process half-pint jars for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, carefully remove jars, placing on a clean dry kitchen towel to cool.
Once cooled, check again that seals are down (you should hear the Ping! as each one seals). Gently remove bands (wash, dry and store for your next project. While they look nicer on, if they have water inside from processing, they can rust. If you are giving away your canned items, you can always slip one back on), note on jar or lid what is in jar with a date. Store in a dry/cool/dark area and use within a year.
As always, if you ever go to use a canned item and the lid is not sealed anymore, or bulging, discard it immediately!!!!!! (I have only ever lost one jar in all my canning, so don’t fret!)
Makes about 7 half-pints.