Monday, 7 October 2013

Blackberries & Fushia

If I was asked for my vision of Heaven, foraging for blackberries amongst the fushia hedges of the Irish countryside would be high on my list! Poul and I recently spent a delightful few days down in Kerry, south west of Ireland. Here the fushia flowers all year and grows over 2 metres tall. I find that you really get in tune with nature when foraging. You focus on the best blackberries but you also notice the insects,birds, butterflies, hares and rabbits too! Such free bounty! I could not believe we were completely alone. No one else as far as I could see was harvesting and we were collecting 1 kilo of fruit every half hour! Free delicious fruit!!!

So my recipe for 1 kilo of delicious blackberry jam:

1 kilo blackberries
1 kilo sugar (with pectin)
100 ml cassis


Boil up the blackberries in a large saucepan with the sugar. Skim the residue as you gently simmer for two minutes. Let cool and add the cassis. Pour into sterilised jars. Seal when cool and store in a cool dark room.

You can also make a delicious fushia berry jelly:

Ingredients :
1 cup fushsia flowers
 1 cup ripe, washed fuchsia berries
 1 cup sugar
 Juice of 1 lemon
 2 cups of apple juice
 1 apple, sweet, peeled and chopped
 2 tablespoons of unflavored gelatin


Simmer flowers, berries, sugar, lemon juice, water, and apple for 10 minutes. Let mixture cool a bit, then strain it. Add the gelatin and allow to thicken in the fridge. Store in sterilised jars in a cool room.