I was despondent after my lavender plant died but then another lavender plant at the front of the house had a new lease of life. I now have a tray of lavender heads drying out.
The blackberries continue to ripen and I am getting on top of managing them now. I picked 2lb of berries yesterday and made another jar and a bit of jelly this morning. I used to think making jams and jelly was really difficult, but it isn't! After a bit of trial and error I found that this recipe works for me.
Put 2lb of blackberries in a preserving pan with 1/4 pint water. Simmer until the berries are soft. Strain through a jelly bag overnight. Next day, to each pint of juice that has come through the jelly bag add 1lb of granulated sugar. Place the juice and sugar into the preserving pan and heat gently until the sugar has melted. Bring to the boil and boil rapidly for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and test for set. Place jelly into sterilised jam jars and cover immediately with a waxed disc and seal.
Things to note:
Make sure that you have all the things to hand before starting to make the jelly e.g jars, covers, jam funnel, wooden spoon, preserving pan etc.
I sterilise the jars by washing in a dishwasher just before I need to use them and then I place jars in the oven on the lowest setting to keep them warm.
Do not remove any scum that comes to the surface until the end of cooking otherwise you will have no jelly left!
Have a couple of saucers in the freezer to check for jelly setting. After 10 minutes remove the pan from the heat and remove a teaspoon of jelly. Place onto chilled saucer. Push jelly along with the spoon. If it wrinkles then the jelly is ready to pot up. If it is still liquid then boil for a couple more minutes until setting point is reached.
In my experience 2lb's berries make a 1lb jar of jelly ( and a bit left over).
Use a few unripe (red) berries to improve setting and flavour.