Less Noise, More Green: Getting fruity - preserving blueberries and red currants

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Getting fruity - preserving blueberries and red currants

Red Currants, red currant jelly, preserving
Red currants

Here in New England, July means ripe berries and we are lucky to have many Pick Your Own fruit farms in Rhode Island. My favorite place to get blueberries is Rocky Point Blueberry Farm. Located in the middle of a suburban area, this small farm has great berries and is a local tradition for many Rhode Islanders.

Blueberries, preserving
 This year I took my friend Roda and we each filled a good size bag in under an hour. We are complete pros!

Blueberries, preserving

We've been eating the berries fresh, of course, and I have been baking breads and muffins and freezing bags of berries for the winter. Blueberry season runs until the middle of August and my guess is I'll be back at the farm with in the week for more!

Red currants, red currant jelly, preserving
Red Currants in the Hancock Shaker Village Gardens, grown as part of their CSA.

 I have loved currants since I was a child and each year I look forward to making preserves. It is illegal to grow currants in Rhode Island (you can read about that, here) so I make the pilgrimage to Connecticut to pick them. This year I went to Tikkanen Farm in Sterling.

Red currant jelly, jelly bag

Black currant jam is my favorite but this year I picked red currants to make jelly. Red currant jelly is really versatile and is used in everything from beef stew to being paired with warmed soft cheeses.

Red currant jelly, preserving

I make a really simple but delicious red currant salad dressing. Place 1/2 cup of red currant jelly and 6 tablespoons of red wine vinegar in a small sauce pan and gently heat until the jelly has melted. Place in the fridge until cold. Yum!

Do you have a favorite preserve?


1 comment:

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