Aron grew up picking blackberries from his mother’s garden. He remembers learning how to tell when a blackberry is truly ripe (black, with a brownish top at the stem, that comes off the vine without requiring much effort); he remembers not being able to keep many berries in his basket; he remembers making blackberry jam. He didn’t used to like the seeds, so his mother would use a food processor to separate them. He’d watch and wait for the temperature to rise to the point that they would pour parafin over the top to seal the jam and then find the cupboards filled with jars of jam.
The best, he recounts, is when she would make blackberry ice cream. It was the only ice cream he liked.
So it’s pretty awesome that our kids will get to pick blackberries in her garden now, too.
Last week, just before we left for Florida, the first of this year’s crop were beginning to ripen. There’s nothing quite like a truly ripe, sweet, warmed-by-the-sun blackberry. Like many kinds of fruit, the truly ripe can’t be shipped, so the only way to experience that flavor is at a farm or farm stand. Or, in grandma’s garden.
Below, a few photos from last year (Hudson’s first time picking). Hudson’s picks tend to go straight into his mouth.