Wild Berry Jams and Jellies, Plus a Work in Progress
I have spent most of September picking, processing and making jams and jellies from the wild berries that grow here at Camp Hahobas. Salal berries were the first berries I picked. I wasn’t even aware they were edible until I was told they were by one of the brush pickers that harvest the Salal. The the Salal plant is used by the floral industry. So the next time you get a pretty bouquet, the greenery in it just might be Salal.
Next I harvested Black Berries. Mr B says they are also called “Wait a minute vines” cause you need to wait a minute while you untangle yourself from their thorny vines. Fortunately I have a Black Berry hedge growing in my front yard. So I didn’t have to go far.
Last I pick the tiny Kinnikinnick berry or Bearberry. After doing a search to see if it was edible I discovered that Native Americans smoked Kinnikinnick and the berries are still used medicinally to treat bladder and kidney disorders. Truly, the leaves of Bearberry plant still fill many a pipe today.
The photo (to the right) makes the berries appear bigger that they really are. The berries in the pan (photo below) gives you a better indication of how small the berries actually are.
When I say tiny, I do mean tiny. I worked one afternoon for 3 and a half hours and all I collected was two quarts of these little guys. By the time I processed the berries I got 1 and a half quarts juice from them. I had to add a quart of black berries so I would have enough juice to get one batch of jelly.
I went out a second time to pick the tiny berries again but got rained out, Fall is finally here. I added two cups of black berries from the very last picking. But it wasn’t enough so, I added about two cups frozen blue berries, thawed, and it still wasn’t enough. So I added enough Apple Juice to make the 5 cups of juice called for in the recipe. I wasn’t sure what the taste would be, but it’s good. It tastes something close to cranberry sauce. It will be good for the Holidays. Served with fresh hot scones or biscuits with creamy sweet butter, “Yummy!”
A Work in Progress
I want to share a project which is a gift for a loved one in my family.
I drafted the crazy block myself. It’s getting easier to draft these blocks. This block is by far the busiest block I’ve done.
I tried my hand at dying a few pieces of lace. I used alcohol inks mixed into water. I got subtle coloring, which was what I wanted. I used the yellow lace butterfly and the flowers in an oval.
Each in part of the block was designed especially for it’s recipient, right down to the little charms I sewed on it. Bet you can’t guess what her favorite colors are? All that needs to be done is to put this block into it’s frame.
Until next time,