Driving down a country road at the peak of summer, who can resist a hand painted “Pick-Your-Own” sign?
Blackberries so ripe and plump, just one touch and they burst off the bush. Lips stained with the dark purple shade of nature’s lipstick.
Overflowing cartons of summer’s candy – rich, ripened berries – lining farmers’ market tables.
A vision of summer, divine.
A steamy hot kitchen filled with boiling jars and lids. Tubs of opened white sugar, little boxes of pectin. Wiping your brow as you stir, stir, stir the simmering berries in your biggest stock pot.
Not quite my vision of jam making. I prefer a cooler kitchen, less boiling, and a jar of jam without the white sugar.
This Blackberry Chia Seed Jam uses agave, a natural sweetener, instead of refined white sugar, and chia seeds instead of pectin.
The blackberries soften and blister in the pot as they cook down into a thick sauce, the chia seeds doubling the size of the pot’s contents, thickening into a glorious jam.
I’ve always preferred my jam loaded with seeds. The fruit in all its natural essence, thickly layered on a piece of golden warm toast.
Finished with a touch of almond extract, the additional layer of flavor to this simple refrigerator jam makes it simply irresistible.
No hours of boiling, tubs of sugar, or pectin needed.
I would love to hear from you. What’s your favorite summer berry? Favorite jam you like to make?
- 18 oz fresh blackberries, rinsed (about 3 heaping cups)
- ¼ cup + 3 tbsp agave
- ¼ cup + 2 tbsp chia seeds (I use Bob's Red Mill)
- ½ tsp almond extract
- In a medium-sized pot, combine the rinsed blackberries and agave nectar. Heat over medium-high and cook for about 5-7 minutes, until the liquid simmers and the blackberries begin to soften and come apart.
- Stir in the chia seeds and cook for 7-10 minutes, stirring frequently. until the jam thickens considerably.
- Pour jam into a clean bowl and let cool, stirring occasionally. When the jam has cooled but is still a little bit warm, gently stir in the almond extract.
- Pour the jam into a clean, air-tight container. Store in the refrigerator. Makes about 2 cups of jam.
This recipe was originally featured on Landeelu, where I am a monthly recipe contributor.