How to Prepare Blackberries

Overview

Blackberries are an abundant fruit throughout North America that are packed with vitamins and antioxidants. But preparing blackberries for cooking is a process to undertake carefully. According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, cooking blackberries will destroy the vitamins and antioxidants in the berry, as well as lending them a mushy consistency. When preparing your blackberries, it is better to freeze or dry berries. If you must cook your blackberries, they should be made into foods that are pleasant to eat despite the mushy consistency of the berries. Some examples of this include pies, cobblers, jams or jellies

Step 1

Place berries in a colander and put the colander at the bottom of a sink. Rinse berries by running cool water over them.

Step 2

Transfer damp berries onto a paper towel by tipping the colander on its side over a paper towel and let berries fall onto the paper towel. Spread the berries so that they are evenly distributed over the paper towel. Allow berries to air dry.

Step 3

Pick through the berries and remove stems, leaves and other debris.

Step 4

Dry berries by placing them on food drying racks. Stack the food drying racks in a food dryer. Turn dryer on and run it until berries are brittle.

Step 5

Freeze berries by placing wax paper on a cookie sheet. Distribute fresh, clean berries in a single layer on the cookie sheet. Place sheet in freezer until berries are frozen. Transfer frozen berries into a food storage container for long-term storage and return to freezer.

Step 6

Liquefy berries for use in sauce recipes by placing clean, fresh berries in a blender and pureeing until liquid consistency. Strain out seeds and pulp by pouring berries through a sieve and into a bowl. Add enough sugar to sweeten and preserve. More sugar will render berries a syrupy consistency. Pour berries into ice cube trays and freeze. When berries are frozen, remove from trays and store in freezer storage containers.

Step 7

Cook berries for pies, cobblers or jelly by mixing clean, dry blackberries with sugar and lemon juice. Cook berries Heat to boiling and stir until blended. For cobbler, mix in flour. For jelly, mush the berries or strain off seeds and add apple pectin.

Things You'll Need

  • Colander
  • Paper towel
  • Food dryer
  • Cookie sheet
  • Wax paper
  • Food storage containers
  • Freezer
  • Sugar
  • Blender
  • Sieve
  • Bowl
  • Ice cube tray
  • Saucepan
  • Food mill

References

  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Optimizing Your Diet
  • Asian Online Recipies: Preparing and Cooking Blackberries
  • How to Garden Advice:How to Dry or Dehydrate your Garden Fruit

Who Can Help

  • North Carolina State University:Blackberries for the Home Garden
  • Help With Cooking: Preparation of various fruits before freezing including apples, blackberries
  • Pick Your Own:How to Make Homemade Blackberry Jelly - Easily!
Keywords: cooking with berries, processing blackberries, storing fruit

About this Author

After 10 years experience in writing, Tracy S. Morris has countless articles and two novels to her credit. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets" and "CatFancy," as well as the "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World," and several websites.