Got a lot of blackberries? Then check out this recipe for Blackberry Mojito Fruit Leather.

I'm not a huge fan of fruit leathers, but this turned out super good! And, really, you can't go wrong with blackberries, mint and rum.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Crazy raspberry lady

Raspberries ready for freezingI was at our grocery store the other day buying 1/2 flats of berries from a local farm (they deliver daily!) when a man asked me a question about the raspberries. Well, let me tell you he got an earful!

After chatting for a few minutes, discussing how long they'll last, what to do with them, how to freeze them, what kind of deal this was, etc. he said, "Wow, you know a lot about raspberries!" I was somewhat embarrassed, but just answered, "Well, I'm the crazy raspberry lady". Of course, my cart was filled with two half-flats of blueberries ($5.98 each!) and two half-flats of raspberries and nothing else.

I was thinking of making jam, but just wasn't in the mood. So, instead I've been freezing and drying the berries that haven't been making their way into our mouths. I freeze them on cookie sheets and once they are frozen I pack them into Ziploc freezer bags and suck the air out with a straw. I've been doing this for the last two weeks so I think I finally have enough berries to last us for a while.

20 comments:

eco 'burban mom said...

I do the same with blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. The best part about frozen berries if you are too hot (or lazy) to make jam in the summer, you can just make it in the winter with the frozen goodies! I usually have so many trays of berries I have to tape signs on the freezer to OPEN SLOWLY to keep my kids from scattering berries all over the place!

Latigo Liz said...

Same here. Only this year I haven’t frozen any berries yet. Too busy making jelly at all hours of the night! I am on the hunt for wild (creeping, not Himalayan) blackberries now. I refuse to buy them. :)

I learned the tray freezing berry trick from...don’t cringe...Martha Stewart.

mshellis2 said...

Yum! Where did you get the blueberries??!? I want some too ;-) I last found them for $3.99 per pint.

Crunchy Chicken said...

mshellis2 - You can get them from the Town and Country Markets (Ballard Market, Greenwood Market, Central Market). They are from Sakuma Bros. Farms. I think the sale goes to 8/5.

Latigo Liz said...

Depends on where you are located.

We have a few great produce stands out here in Enumclaw. Coming from Auburn, Tracy’s Roadside Produce is on SR164 right before you get into town just past the Enumclaw Sales Pavilion on the north/left side. Country Farmers Market is over on SR169 coming from Renton, near the Krain Corner Inn on the right/west side.

In Bonney Lake and Maple Valley there are Farm Fresh Produce stands. I don’t know what they carry berry-wise, though. I only find myself going to Tracy’s. :)

Kristijoy said...

Hah I just canned about 7 lbs of raspberry jam from my U-pick farm Wednesday (Sauvie Island Organics). After freezing about two lbs on trays. Froze all the blueberries though, I was out of Pomona's pectine by then, forgot to check my supply.

I still have peaches from the orchard to slice and freeze. Still have some peach pie left and thinking cobbler next week. yum. Berry season. Soon to be followed by the almost more exciting pear season (I love dried pears like no body's business.)

Crunchy Chicken said...

Kristijoy - what do you do to dry your pears?

Anonymous said...

I picked 2 big bowls of black raspberries but they never made it to the freezer, they were gobbled up in record time. When we get back from vacation it'll be time to make red current jam, everybody's favorite.

diana

Abbie said...

I just posted a recipe... simplest recipe ever... peaches, blueberries and raspberries make fruit salad! :)

jennconspiracy said...

5.98 for a freakin' half flat? We pay that much for a half pint! Grrr! I wanna have some blueberry and raspberry jam! Get to work, Crunchy!

We got some preserves trading to do - I've now got white peach jam and jelly, plus two kinds of lemon chutney, apricot jam/jelly/chutney, as well as four kinds of plum jelly and plum sauce. Yellow peaches across the street are almost at the right stage for chutney, and when they are fully ripe, I'm going to do canned slices. I'm also going to take a look at some green gage plums, apples and quince tomorrow for the next round. Am hoping to get pears and figs from Concord (it's by Davis, a lot hotter up there) and Concord grapes should be ready by EOM...

My boyfriend counted - I have 140 jars of preserves. I sure hope I get the empties back from non-canners this year! :)

Erika said...

Jenn - I'm with you - I paid twice that for the same amount, and I bought it at the Sakuma Bros' farm store! Maybe I should just stick to the u-pick patch.

--Erika

Anonymous said...

I dried pears just by slicing them (into eighths/quarters)and putting in the dehydrator. They came out chewy, very tasty and lasted for a year. Would have lasted longer if we hadn't eaten them all.

Raspberries can also be preserved by putting clean berries in a glass jar (doesn't need to be a canning jar- just with a good lid) and pouring vodka to cover. Leave for a month or so. Presto - drunken raspberries for adult ice cream topping, chocolate cake filling or fruit salad addition. Sugar is optional and can be added later. Raspberry margaritas anyone?

Eva

Theresa said...

I have finally purchased a medium sized deep freeze, after a year of hemming and hawing, and will also be freezing some berries this year. I'm fortunate to have saskatoons and raspberries growing in my yard, so some of those will make their way into the freezer this year. Mmmm....berries!

mudnessa said...

im not good with fruits but i have a iguana and i buy greens for my dads tortoise too and whenever i have a basket full of dandelions, endive, escarole, romaine, and some raddichio the checkers always ask me about the salad im making and then they get inquisitive about the tortoise and iguana and i think i tend to go on and on about them . . . so i know the feeling about seeming to know too much and those looks when you tend to go on too much.

Kristi said...

The Upick place by me has blueberries $1.70/lb. That's about $2.21 a pint. And that doesn't include "tasting". A fun time for the boys, we usually have our berries picked for the year in about 45 minutes.

I made the mistake of bringing the efficient German in-laws picking. I had more berries than I knew what to do with! I made blueberry syrup that year....

Oldnovice said...

5.98 for a freakin' half flat? We pay that much for a half pint!

Same here. I planted both raspberry and blueberry bushes last fall, but Spring weather wasn't good for them and they're barely alive.

We're not near anything good food-wise. Farmer's Market is a fair drive, U-picks are WAY farther. Envy you Washingtonians in this regard.

cindy24 said...

I so need some berries. Last year I went to visit my dad in northern california and picked so many black berries. I need to find someplace to pick them in so. cal. My raspberry plant has given me maybe 20 this year. No quite enough to make some jelly. I haven't seen any cheap enough to buy in bulk. I did plant a blueberry bush so hoping in a few years i will have enough for the kids to eat.

S for Kitchen Confit said...

Love that story! I have been the person in the grocery store with a ton of 1 or 2 fresh products before, but never really thought how weird it looks (I was probably the 'crazy blueberry lady' recently).

Robj98168 said...

What store do you find blueberries in for $5.98 a half flat? The berry farm that comes out to the market aells them for $15per half flat! Good shopping eye!

Rjs said...

I have to admit, I'm jealous! 1/2 flats of raspberries - I would go crazy.

My friend thought I was nuts when I was thrilled to buy 10 lbs of Michigan blueberries on sale at the store a few weeks back. "No offense, but what are you going to do with it all?" she asked. Well, I plan to freeze and enjoy all winter long!!!

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