Editor’s note: This article comes from our 11-year-old writer Frederick who writes about his experiences with cooking and gardening here in California’s Sequoia National Forest.
I like eating blackberries especially off of the vines. I ate blackberries off of the vines for three weeks and then there was enough to pick and take inside. Finally, after four days we had enough blackberries to make jam.
My grandma and I went in to the kitchen and started making it. The first step was to separate the ones that had brown spots on them from the ones that didn’t so that my grandma could pinch the brown spots off with her long fingernails. While she was picking the brown spots off, Alastair and I were smooshing the blackberries. My grandma put the bowl of blackberries on the floor so we could get to it easier. We kept smooshing them and a few blackberries landed on the floor from Alastair smooshing them — he smooshed them really hard. When we were done with smooshing the blackberries, we measured the squished blackberries into a big pot. It ended up as eleven cups of blackberries and then we measured twelve cups of sugar.
While I was measuring the sugar, my grandma was stirring around the blackberries in the pot until they got to a full, rolling boil. Then we poured the sugar in. The sugar sort of diluted it — it wasn’t at a full rolling boil anymore and so we had to get it back to a full, rolling boil. Once it was boiling again, my grandma canned the jam and it was done.
Blackberries are fun to cook with. I like blackberry jam on cheese toast, biscuits, corn bread, yogurt, and ice cream.