A few weeks ago, I did a slightly crazy thing. On Friday morning, I packed up my car, did some quick grocery shopping, and spent eight hours driving to Maine to teach a class at Frinklepod Farm. I got there around 10:30 pm, tumbled into a cozy bed tucked into stone room in a majestic barn, and woke up to a gorgeous morning, ready to teach.
I spent seven hours setting up, teaching (such a delightful group of students!), and cleaning up (thankfully, I had plenty of help from Flora and MaryJo) and then hopped back in the car and drove myself home. All told, I was only there for about 16 hours. I wish I’d managed to spend a little more time in Maine, but the craziness of late summer didn’t allow for me to spend any more time away from home.
Despite the shortness of my visit, I did manage to bring a little bit of Maine back home with me. Three perfect pints of intensely flavorful wild Maine blueberries.
Now, we get plenty of cultivated blueberries here in Philly, but these tiny wild berries are a different beast. Sturdy, tart, and intensely flavorful, they make gorgeous jam. They are also a little fiddly to separate from their stems (which is why, if you look closely, you’ll see a few stems. I lost my patience with trying to remove them all).
I used a ratio of three parts fruit to one part sugar for this batch (calculating by weight). This means, if you have access to wild blueberries and don’t have the exact amount that I used, you can still proceed with what you’ve got.
I might need to drive to Maine again next summer, so that I can make more of this tasty jam. (The jar labels pictured above are from site sponsor CanningCrafts and the jars are from site sponsor Fillmore Container).
Wild Blueberry Jam
- 3 pints wild blueberries about 2 1/4 pounds
- 12 ounces granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon powdered fruit pectin
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/2 lemon zested and juiced
- Prepare a canning pot and 5-6 quarter pint jars.
- Wash the blueberries and pick them over for stems and leaves. Pour them into a wide, non-reactive pot and add the sugar, pectin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon zest and juice.
- Using a potato masher, break up the berries and work in the spices.
- Place the pot on the stove over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring regularly for 15-20 minutes, until the jam passes your set test of choice.
- When you're satisfied with the consistency of the jam, remove the pot from the heat. Funnel the jam into the prepared jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.
- Wipe the rims, apply the lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.
- When the time is up, remove the jars and set them on a folded kitchen towel to cool. When the jars have cooled enough that you can comfortably handle them, check the seals. Sealed jars can be stored at room temperature for up to a year. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used promptly.
I just canned some peach-bourbon sauce in that size/shape jar and really loved them. Wild blueberries sound wonderful.
You are an amazing spokesman for home canning & preserving!
I love your posts, your pics and…
how stinking cute are these jars? I have a ‘jar’ issue and am afraid to order these cuties for fear of having to get a divorce! (they are in my cart as I ramble on).
Thank you for all you do to motivate and support safe home canning & preserving!
‘Preserving By The Pint’ is also in my cart!
Yum! I cannot wait to try this recipe out, thanks for the share. Love checking out your blog, keep up the posts!
I’m lucky. A 2-3 hour drive east on highway 7 in Ontario brings me to the first of the wild blueberry stands. My dad used to say it was his favourite thing about driving me to university in August – he got to pick up wild blueberries. Northern Ontario also sends their bounty down to our farmer’s markets.
There is NOTHING like Maine blueberries!!!!
Thanks, Marissa. I’ve been lurking on your blog for years (and am a proud owner of a very dog-eared copy of Preserving by the Pint). For those of us who can’t make that drive to Maine, would this jam work with frozen wild blueberries (e.g., Wyman’s)?
I think it would work beautifully with frozen wild blueberries!
I can personally attest to the fact that the Wyman’s frozen wild Maine blueberries works perfectly well.
Fantastic, I am on the west coast so no fresh wild Maine BB’s here but I can get frozen wild berries. Do you measure out 2 1/4 lbs frozen or fresh? Sorry if a dumb question, I’ve not canned w/frozen fruit before but so glad to know it’s an option!
I would measure them out frozen.
Wild blueberries from Maine (as you described, small, a bit tart), sound like a FIRST COUSIN to Montana huckleberries. We have friends who used to make much of their ‘living’ harvesting huckleberries to sell to the local restaurants, and at the farmers’ market. I was picking wild blackberries in Ireland just a few days ago. They are everywhere there! If you look carefully at the hedges, many of the hedges are “bleeding hearts” but seem to be pernicious hedge, not a beautiful plant as we would have in our gardens. And amongst the bleeding hearts are wild blackberries. In other spots, they are the prominent hedge covering or growing around the famous Irish stone walls.
Hey…I’m loving this post and those jars…I looked on the Filmore Container site but couldn’t find these jars. Which jars are these?