One way to prolong the berry season a bit longer is to preserve your berries. While the first time preserving can be a bit daunting, it’s really not hard – especially when given expert help from places like the Portland Homestead Supply Co. Here, they give a recipe for blackberry jam with a twist. The blackberries could be subbed out for strawberries, and the sage for any other fresh herb.
Blackberry Sage Jam fermented with Kombucha, by Portland Homestead Supply Co.
5 cups blackberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup raw honey
2 teaspoons of sea salt
1/4 cup of sage leaves, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon finely grated ginger
2 tablespoons of plain or flavored kombucha
- Cook berries, sugar, ginger, lemon zest and salt in a non-reactive saucepan over low until berries began to soften. Use a spoon or other utensil to crush the berries and integrate into the rest of the mixture. Remove the mixture from the heat and let cool for ten to fifteen minutes.
- Pour cooled mixture into either a blender or a vessel that would work well with an immersion blender. Add the sage leaves, honey and lemon juice and puree. By allowing the mixture to cool for a few moments before you add the raw honey, you lose less of it’s nutrients than if you were to add the honey during the cooking process.
- Stir the kombucha into the mixture and then transfer the jam to a clean pint jar. The kombucha will act as a kick start to the fermentation process, encouraging the growth of beneficial bacteria.
- Leave the jar at room temperature for two days with either an airlock lid or cloth cover over the jar.
- After two days, your jam is ready and you can dig in! Transfer to the refrigerator for storage. The jam will keep for a month or more.
If your jam is runny and you would like a thicker consistency, try adding chia seeds with the ratio of 1 tablespoon of chia to 1 cup of jam. Stir in the chia seeds and let them sit for about an hour to absorb the moisture of the jam. Chia seeds are mucilaginous, meaning they form a slippery gel coating when thoroughly wet. Adding these seeds will increase the viscosity of your jam as well as supply a healthy dose of omega-3’s.
The Portland Homestead Supply Company is a one-stop shop for your urban homestead. They sell supplies for canning and food preservation, cheesemaking, fermenting, candle and soap making, gardening, and backyard poultry. In addition to supplies, they offer classes to teach homesteading skills, perform regular product demos, and host two annual food swaps. Learn more on their website: www.homesteadsupplyco.com