Saturday, 28 June 2014

Mulberry jam

This spring, I discovered that I have at least 5 mulberry trees in my yard. I never really knew what mulberries were and basically only knew them from the children's tune. As I've been discovering what is growing in our new yard, I learned that those berries on those trees are mulberry.

I did try a couple fresh from the tree, but I wasn't all that excited. Recently, I've heard from friends that they've made mulberry jam. I figured, what the heck, I might as well try that.

I've been collecting mulberries over the last week or so (with several days being away from work). I figured today I had enough berries so I gave it a shot. It turns out that I probably have enough for another batch in my freezer.

Today I collected over 3 cups of berries. I've only been half heartedly collecting them. I pick what I can reach and am not really worried about getting them all. I've heard of shaking the trees with sheets under the trees to catch the berries, but that seems very wasteful. Less than half of what falls is ripe.

Today's collection of just over 3 cups of mulberries.

My friends told me that they didn't take the stems off of the berries. I'm glad to hear that as it doesn't seem easy. I put the berries in the food processor and the stems basically disappear. From the more than 3 cups of berries, I got about 1.5 cups of berry purée.

I followed this recipe:

It was very easy, which is good as this was my first attempt at jam.

My setup. The canning bath on the left. The berries cooking (before sugar added) on the right and the small pan with the lids for the jars warming.
The jam in jars

One of the nice bits about the "skim off foam" part was that it gives you the opportunity to taste the jam. It was quite good!

I have enough for another batch, which I'll definitely be doing once I buy more sugar (6 cups of sugar in a batch!) and pectin. There are still lots of berries in the tree that have yet to ripen, so I'll be picking more. I need to see if the girls like it. If they do, I'll be using this for their PB&Js. I will look to see if I can find other recipes that call for less sugar.  If I do, I'll try that and see how it tastes.


  1. I LOVE mulberries. There used to be mulberry trees in the park with the public pool where I took swimming lessons as a kid; getting to eat mulberries was part of the treat! In Madison, there was one next to a sidewalk that I'd have to pass on my way to campus, and in mulberry season the sidewalk turned black from crushed berries. I'd love to have some in my yard some day!

    1. I've seen sidewalks dark from berries, but never knew what they were. I really understand how the sidewalks become covered as you look at the berries and they fall off. I was able to figure out what the tree was and was surprised to find so many in our yard. We discovered yesterday that our neighbor (2 doors down) has one too and I bet we could pick them if we asked. Mulberries fresh from the tree won't be my favorite, but it makes tasty jam. My girls take PG&J in their lunches many days, so I'll use this for that. Valerie also loves toast with jam, so it would be a good treat to give her. It just has so much sugar in it!