The end of summer has arrived with a rustle of falling leaves and a chilly wind, the warmer weather seemingly over almost before it started. While you won’t catch me complaining – I’m an autumn lover through and through – it does seem as though we completely missed out on summer this year here in the UK.
Last Sunday I ventured out to forage for wild blackberries, keeping an eye out for those little deep-purple jewels gleaming in the bushes. I managed to gather quite a haul, and immediately set about making jars of fresh jam in order to preserve and store my harvest. As I surveyed my handiwork I was struck by inspiration – surely the tart sweetness and sharp tang of blackberries would lend themselves nicely to a more savoury recipe?
After scouring Pinterest for far too long, I emerged with a handful of delicious-sounding sweet and savoury blackberry recipes that are perfect for celebrating the approaching new season. I hope I can find the time to forage for more berries this week – in the meantime I decided to share my findings with you, my lovely reader!
Making my own jam using freshly-picked wild blackberries is one of my favourite late-summer activities. The resulting fruity compote tastes so much better than the store-bought versions and is the perfect way to welcome in the start of the colder months.
Blackberries naturally contain a high amount of pectin, an ingredient often added to jam in order to help it set effectively. As a result this recipe requires only three simple ingredients and takes less than an hour to make – perfect for jam-making novices who are tired out from an afternoon of blackberry-picking!
I try to avoid dairy as much as possible, but I may have to make an exception for this savoury-sweet tart topped with ricotta and fresh blackberries.
I can imagine serving this up as a starter before a hearty rustic meal, or packed as part of a picnic to be eaten along the windswept English coastline. The combination of blackberries and balsamic resulting in a savoury compote is nothing short of genius, and I can’t wait to throw this together after a busy day foraging for pinecones and conkers.
I love a good fruit cobbler, particularly when paired with dairy-free ice cream or custard. It seems like a quintessentially British dessert, so I always associate it with hearty roast dinners and good company.
My favourite is peach cobbler, but I can’t resist swapping those delicious stone fruits out for blackberries at this time of year. It’s an incredibly easy treat that calls for just five simple ingredients and can be ready to serve in an hour – the perfect way to use up any seasonal berries and make the most of the late-summer harvest.
I must have been living under a rock for most of my life, as I had no idea that chicken, brie and blackberry paired so well together. While many of the recipes in this post fall under the late-summer category, this rustic meal sits squarely in the heart of autumn.
If you’re in the mood for a rich and decadent starter to pair with a hearty dinner, this recipe should most definitely be your first choice. I can easily see myself adapting the ingredients to include cranberries during the Christmas season or serving it as a Thanksgiving entree, and will be sure to keep a bag of frozen blackberries in my freezer throughout the colder months in case the cravings strike.
This apple and blackberry pie was one of the first seasonal recipes that I shared here on my website, and it still holds up to this day. Back then I declared it ‘the best way to welcome in the colder months’ and I completely stand by that statement.
What could be better than a freshly baked pie bursting with wild blackberries and apples picked straight from my garden? I know homemade pies can be a little intimidating, but this recipe couldn’t be simpler. This year I’m going to try some more intricate leaf designs as decoration instead of the traditional lattice effect – wish me luck!
Now this is a late-summer recipe I can get behind. I’m thinking oven-baked organic chicken thighs slowly marinaded in this sticky blackberry barbecue sauce, served up with rice and a fresh seasonal salad.
With hints of chipotle and honey this moreish sauce pairs just as well with barbecued meat as it does with roasted vegetables, making it a versatile condiment that can be used year-round. Of course, it tastes best when prepared with fresh and juicy blackberries picked right on the fringe of early autumn.
I think we all went a little crazy baking banana bread over lockdown, so it’s time to switch things up and infuse a little blackberry magic into my usual baking routine.
When I found this recipe for blackberry bread, I knew I had to make it as soon as possible. It was a toss-up between wild blackberry jam and sweet blackberry bread when I accumulated my bag of wild berries over the weekend, and sadly I could only choose one. Thankfully the woods and forests around South London and Kent are filled with ripe blackberries at this time of year, so I’m sure it won’t be long before I replenish my stockpile of seasonal fruits.
For a lighter option, this chicken salad with blackberries and balsamic vinegar makes a healthy and delicious lunch before the colder months begin to roll in.
I would never have thought to add blackberries to a salad, but now I can’t think of anything more satisfying than the sharp tang of berries combined with juicy chicken and crisp lettuce. You’ll usually catch me whipping up hearty pies and stews as the temperatures drop, but this year I may have to stretch out salad season for a little longer.
As I grow older, I find myself drawn to the savoury aspect of this tart little berry and often gravitate towards decadent sauces and tangy glazes as opposed to the sweet cakes and puddings that usually spring to mind. Tell me, are you a sweet or savoury blackberry lover?
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