For the last two weeks, I’ve had a case of boysenberries in my freezer. People with big freezers might leave them in there for the winter, but space in my propane-off-the-grid-style freezer is precious, and I realized that I had to get those babies into jars.
This started a pretty straightforward berry jam recipe, until I went out in the garden and saw the basil:
My thought process was simple. This jam is for me. I am going to put it on big slices of sourdough bread with my friend Anna’s amazing garlic chevre, and it will be sweet and savory and perfect. I am getting hungry thinking about it right now.
Makes: about 8 1/2 pint jars
Cooking Time: about an hour
- 5 cups of crushed boysenberries
- 4 cups of whole boysenberries, not crushed (to make a chunky jam where you can still see big pieces of berries)
- 6 c. sugar
- 1 tbs. minced basil
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
1. Bring boiling water canner to a boil. Wash and sterilize jars and lids (I process them for 10 minutes at the end, so technically you don’t need to sterilize them, but I am OCD about this and do it anyway).
2. In a large reactive pot, combine berries (both crushed and whole) and sugar. Gently stir together the sugar and the berries. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Cook until the jam reaches 220 degrees on a candy thermometer (or passes whatever gel test you’re using). Right at the end, when the jam is at about 210 or 215 degrees, stir in the lemon juice and the basil. If you put it in earlier you’ll completely lose the flavor.
3. Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4″ headspace. Wipe rims and screw on lids. Process for 10 minutes.
So, if at some point in the jam-making process, a loved one walks in the kitchen and says “WOAH. It smells REALLY good in here” and you want to do something nice for them, you can whip up a quick batch of boysenberry pancakes and spoon some of the warm jam over the top.
(Don’t judge me for using Bisquick, I bought it at Costco two years ago when I was lured in by the promise of buying in bulk. I’m proud to say I only have one cup left in the box, though.)
Makes: 2 large-ish pancakes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
- 1 c. Biquick
- 1 egg
- 1/4 c. milk
- a handful of boysenberries
- 1 tbs. butter
- for serving: 1 tbs. butter and a few tablespoons of warm jam
Mix the bisquick, egg, milk and berries together in a bowl.
Heat the butter in a large nonstick pan on medium heat. Once it’s melted, ladle the batter onto the pan to make whatever size pancakes you’re in the mood for. Cook them for about 3 minutes, or until you see bubbles coming up in the batter. Flip them over to cook the other side. Cook for another 3 minutes or so. Transfer to a plate. Top with butter and jam.