Monday, June 25, 2012

Rubus Jam

After my disappointing experience with the meh-ness of wild Salmonberry jam, I decided to give the berry another chance. I want to love Salmonberries so badly; they're beautiful, are nutritious, and this time of year, they're everywhere in the Pacific Northwest. So, rather than return to Dabney State Park and avoid falling into Stinging Nettle (like the last time), I went back to the grove  I discovered locally, and began to pick.

As an excited forager, perhaps I was too hasty in my previous Salmonberry-picking. The berries I picked in the grove seemed a little more palatable... perhaps they were a little more ripe... although they're still not in the same league as the sole ripe Thimbleberry I was able to get my hands on. I picked a mug full of the golden beauties, and then returned home to make jam. Only, instead of having a 100 percent Salmonberry jam, I mixed it with another member -- albeit a more famous member of the Rubus genus -- tasty raspberries! I planted raspberry bushes in the garden a couple of years ago; best gardening decision I've ever made.

My recipe:

1 1/2 cups Raspberries
1 cup Salmonberries
some lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon of honey
a bit of pectin, if desired

Gently wash and pick over berries, and mash them in a saucepan. As they cook, add a bit of lemon juice (I added about half of a lemon's juice) and then I added 1 cup of sugar. Add a bit of pectin if desired, about two tablespoons or so. Bring the jam to a boil for several minutes. Turn off the surface, and allow the jam to cool before storing.

This jam works; there's no strange aftertaste, and it has just the right amount of tart.The end result of Rubus jam yields an absolutely delicious and fantastic jam. Booyakasha!

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