Friday, July 19, 2013
Easy Lemon Blueberry Jam + An Itchy Berry-Picking Experience
Those two words make me incredibly happy.
I literally wait all year until glorious summertime, when I can get my hands on heaping gallon-sized buckets of the little spheres of blueberry goodness.
This year, Brad and I got adventurous and took a short drive to a nearby blueberry farm, where I excitedly picked berries to my heart's content. After almost 2 hours of hand-picking the finest berries, we had TWO gallons to lug home with us. Visions of blueberry jam and countless blueberry desserts were swimming through my head. I was thrilled...
Have any of you ever had the unfortunate experience of practically being eaten alive by little demon bugs called chiggers/red bugs? Oh my dear...Over 40 of those little buggers got a hold of me and had quite the snack. At first, I thought they were simply mosquito bites, but OH NO. Brad and I were both itchy, scratchy messes. The thing that's so bad about chiggers is that you have no clue they've bitten you until it's too late. Once you start itching, they are long gone.
Was it worth it? That's a hard question to answer because the berries are so incredibly delicious, but those little demon bugs sure made their presence known. After 2 weeks, the bites still haven't gone away completely. However, we will be enjoying these two mountains of blueberries for a LONG time, so I'm a happy camper. Next time, I'll just be sure to cover myself with about 10 layers of bug spray before we venture out into the blueberry bushes!
This mouth-watering blueberry jam is one way I put those berries to good use. The rest are either snuggled away in the freezer, or have been turned into other desserts. This recipe is easy, yet is packed with the sweet flavors of summer. The tart lemon juice is the perfect addition to the sweetness of the fruit. Y.U.M.M.Y.
Bon Appetit, my friends (and don't forget the bug spray)!
Easy Lemon Blueberry Jam
6 cups fresh blueberries
3 cups sugar
Juice of 1 large lemon
Place blueberries in a large bowl and crush them with a potato masher or fork, to release their juices.
Next, pour the crushed blueberries into a large saucepan, over medium heat. Add the sugar and lemon juice. Stir until all ingredients are mixed well, and continue to cook over medium heat for 25-35 minutes, stirring often. Be careful not to let the mixture bubble over, and lower heat as needed.
Once the desired consistency has been reached, carefully pour the jam into mason jars or other heat-proof, covered containers. Place in the refrigerator (jam will continue to thicken as it cools).