Blackcurrant season is here.

21 Jul

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As the good weather continues the Blackcurrants are ready for picking. Usually I would cut off the branches and then pick the fruit from them en masse. This year however despite all the sunshine the fruit is ripening in stages. I suspect this is something to do with the garden being shaded for part of the day by the many trees. It makes the job a bit easier anyway as all the fruit doesn’t have to be harvested together.

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The tree shade made it easier to pick in the scorching temperatures we’ve had all week. I moved as the sun moved…always seeking the shade. Thankfully rain is forecast for the week ahead. The garden needs it as the ground is already cracking.

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These Blackcurrants need a good prune as I suspect they hadn’t been pruned for about 2 years. Lots of them planted here by the previous owners. My neighbour tells me the were all grown from cuttings taken from her garden. No clue as to the varieties but who cares so long as they produce a crop.

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I find harvesting a relaxing pastime. What could be nicer…sitting in the shade picking your Vitamin C supply for the Winter ahead. Actually Blackcurrants are just as much a superfood as the much lauded Blueberry. They are full of antioxidants and are good for problems with joint inflammation, eyestrain and urinary tract infections.

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As always Lettie is nearby when I’m in the garden. She too was seeking shade but not quite getting it right. Freddie doesn’t seem to like the Sun…he retreats to his bed when it’s very hot.

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All the Blackcurrants are frozen…one kilo in each bag. This is enough to make 7 or 8 12oz pots of jam or 3 bottles of cordial. Time for all that when the harvesting is done. I sell my jams and chutneys to a few local shops and also at occasional markets I attend. I am sharing with you my recipe or Blackcurrant Jam. It uses less water than usual…just a pint…but this helps to give a stronger flavour jam that sets easily.

Blackcurrant Jam.

2lbs 4ozs Blackcurrants

1 pint water

3lbs 6ozs sugar

Place the Blackcurrants and water together in a large thick bottomed pan. Bring to the boil, reduce to simmer and cook until the fruit is softened. The contents of the pan should be reduced by half . Add the sugar. Stir well whilst bringing all to a full rolling boil. Boil hard until a set is obtained. Pot and seal whilst still hot.

Happy jamming.

Bridget

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24 Responses to “Blackcurrant season is here.”

  1. gaynorthepainter July 21, 2013 at 1:31 pm #

    Hi Bridget how do you make cordial I’m interested in making myself some. Also when you make your jam do you use jam sugar or normal granulated sugar please.

    • bridget July 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm #

      Sorry for not replying earlier but I just found your comment in spam. Will post a recipe for cordial in the coming week. I normally use ordinary granulated sugar in jams. The jam sugar with pectin added I would only use for fruits like strawberry that don’t have much pectin.

  2. joanfrankham July 21, 2013 at 2:45 pm #

    Thank you for the recipe, I too am harvesting a few at a time, though I only have 2 bushes, might freeze them and use later, as you suggest.

    • bridget July 21, 2013 at 9:33 pm #

      I don’t like to waste the Summer days over a hot stove…better to leave that until later or on a rainy day.

  3. cathsveggies1 July 21, 2013 at 8:02 pm #

    Great crop there, Bridget. I don’t think we have enough to make jam though, had more gooseberries this year. Glad you mentioned that you could freeze them though 😉

    • bridget July 21, 2013 at 9:32 pm #

      No Gooseberries…I must plant some. Love gooseberry jam.

  4. Anne Wilson July 21, 2013 at 11:33 pm #

    Got all of ours done, 6 lb were used for the jam and the remaining 6.5 I bottled, I would normally freeze them and process in cooler weather but no room in the freezers this year. The Lady Mantle and daisy are looking fine.

    • bridget July 22, 2013 at 1:32 am #

      Great! Lemon curd was lush…dived in straight away. Lovely veg and eggs too. Our cup runneth over.

      • Anne Wilson July 22, 2013 at 12:40 pm #

        Glad you enjoyed it all.

  5. crabandfish July 22, 2013 at 11:20 am #

    Hi Bridget, how lush and green your property is – and those black currants – sensational – happy gardening and eating!
    Flavia

  6. Jane July 22, 2013 at 12:24 pm #

    I’m envious of your bushes! We have three weeny bushes,not much fruit,but what there is is deliclious.
    Jane x

  7. june July 22, 2013 at 6:47 pm #

    Mmmm….black currants! Can’t wait until I finish the festivals, fairs and agri shows (for me, that’ll be after the first week of August) to just re-connect with nature and go harvesting for currants and then the berries and then the rosehips. Isn’t nature incredibly generous – giving us all we need for every season? I love walking through the lanes, basket in hand, and picking what Mother Earth has provided for us all.

    Thanks for the recipe for the jam, as well. It doesn’t get much better or more satisfying than making your own jam, made from berries and currants that you’ve picked with your own hands. Natural magic is what I like to call it.

  8. elaine July 22, 2013 at 9:18 pm #

    I picked my first lot at the weekend and froze them – it’s much too hot to stand over a stove boiling jam. Last year I made a load of blackcurrant cordial – I am sure it was that that kept colds at bay.

    • bridget July 23, 2013 at 6:39 pm #

      I freeze mine too…as you say…much too hot for that right now. I too intend to make cordial.

  9. Mizz Winkens July 23, 2013 at 9:10 am #

    the berrries on my little blackcurrent bush are also not all ripening at the same time which I thought was a bit odd and it’s neighbours berries ripened about a month ago. Birds got the earlier ones but seem to be leaving us the later ones. Also odd….But I’m not complaining- we’re enjoying the few we have. Hope you enjoying the amazing weather!

    • bridget July 23, 2013 at 6:37 pm #

      We’ve got loads of blackcurrants so there is enough for us and the birds. The weather has cooled somewhat…much to our relief…it was that bit too hot.

  10. Dee Sewell July 23, 2013 at 9:37 am #

    Thanks for sharing the jam recipe! We’re growing lots of berries but most aren’t netted so the birds ate all the redcurrents! I’ve been given two bags of blackcurrents so will give it a go 🙂

    • bridget July 23, 2013 at 6:35 pm #

      Go for it! This recipe uses less water than usual but this gives a stronger flavour and also sets very easily.

  11. Donna@Gardens Eye View July 24, 2013 at 12:39 am #

    Yummy…how wonderful that these were grown from cuttings and what bliss to find these in your garden.

    • bridget July 24, 2013 at 6:43 am #

      It is great not to be totally starting from scratch again. I’m surprised how well they produced as they need major pruning.

  12. madcrowherbals July 24, 2013 at 4:11 pm #

    So true. I just got some great ones at the local farmer’s market. 🙂

    Michael

  13. BeyondTheWildGarden July 24, 2013 at 9:43 pm #

    Thanks for the recipe!! Hopefully I will get enough this year and the birds (Or visitors) wont take them all before I get to pick them!!!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Chutney and Jam Making Weekend | thegrangerange - August 5, 2013

    […] Blackcurrant season is here. (fromacountrycottage.wordpress.com) […]

  2. Blackcurrant | Find Me A Cure - February 11, 2014

    […] Blackcurrant season is here. […]

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