Ingredient of the Month: Blackberries

blackberries

I’ve created a nice annual tradition for the past two years: blackberry picking at a local farm.

Right before or on the 4th of July, I hop in the car and drive about 15 minutes south (I think) to this quaint farm where there are dozens of rows of blackberries and sometimes blueberries and raspberries. In my few years of experience, I’ve come to find that picking blackberries is the most enjoyable as raspberries are really hard to find and blueberries are smaller and therefore take longer to fill up a bucket.

blackberry picking

See my 4 tips for blackberry picking

So, in honor of all of the rest of you blackberry picking (or picking them up at the farmers market or grocery store), bejeweled and tart-sweet blackberries are our Ingredient of the Month.

Tell me more:

Blackberries are a dark purple/black fruit grown on stems or bushes that ripen in the summer. They contain many tiny seeds, and they are high in antioxidants.

blackberries

Where do I buy blackberries?

If you don’t have a blackberry farm/bush nearby, then you can find them at your local farmers market or at the grocery store likely near the raspberries and other fresh fruits.

How do I store blackberries?

Fresh blackberries need to be rinsed and left on the counter for a day or two or stored in the refrigerator to preserve freshness. To freeze berries, wash and freeze on an even layer on a cookie sheet in the freezer, then put into a large plastic bag. If you bought berries from the grocery store, then keep them in the refrigerator.

blackberries

How do I cook with blackberries?

So, we all know that blackberries are heavenly popped straight into your mouth, paired with fresh whipped cream or with summer’s best vanilla ice cream, but there are many more options, too.

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Tips for Blackberry Picking

blackberry picking

A few weekends ago, I was up early on a Saturday morning (thanks, adulthood), so I decided to go berry picking.

One great thing about living outside of the city is that we’re close to so many farms…and even berry patches!

I trekked out to Dr. Young’s Pond Berry Farm in Angier to pick some of the last blackberries of the season.

dr. young's pond berry farm

I also got to learn the story of the berry farm: The land used to be owned by Dr. Young, the resident county doctor, and they often used the pond on his property to baptize people. So, the family that owns it now, decided to name the berry farm after Dr. Young’s Pond.

Berry picking was so fun (but hot), and it has been a blast cooking with the blackberries since then.

blackberry picking

Here are a few tips to get the most out of berry picking:

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