Pickled Blueberries

Blueberries are so much more than jam and danish. So much more than just sweet.  Don’t get me wrong; they’re wonderful in all their sweet glory but factor in a little savoury burst and suddenly, they have an added level of wow.

When writing the menu for our next flip, I’d talked myself through all the obvious blueberry concoctions and then a crazy notion to pickle some blueberries kissed my imagination. That afternoon a punnet was sourced on the way home and whilst making dinner, the experimentation began. There were a couple of mad scientist crazy giggles to myself, but I had a feeling that a brined sweet berry would be completely amazing. Once the pickling solution had cooled around the blueberries, I snuck one into my mouth and pure bliss induced  shut eyes. They were better than I’d imagined! I left them out on the bench for 2 days and the flavour and crunch just got better. I must say, these are an experiment that has brought me a lot of cheeky joy, purely because the method is so unexpected and so left of centre!

So here’s some cheeky joy for you

Find a jar that will fit a punnet of blueberries with at least a knuckles’ worth of room under the rim.

Load the jar with your berries, the peeled zest of an orange, (use your peeler so you don’t get any of the bitter pith and the large pieces look beautiful), 3 or 4 bay leaves and 2 cloves of garlic smashed with the skin on just to release their flavour.

In a pot bring 250ml each cider vinegar and water to the boil with 50g of good quality salt.

Pour the hot brine over the jarred blueberries, pop the lid on and allow them to sit and pickle for at least 2 days before using. Et Voila it’s that simple!

They’re great served on a cheese board that includes a blue brie or a Ploughman’s Lunch with smoked ham, cheddar, apple, a beetroot chutney and buttered bread. Try them in a beautiful salad with smoked salmon, boiled eggs, watercress, tiny pieces of poached pear and a dill mayonnaise or in a side salad of peas, red onion and cucumber with a piece of grilled salmon and a chervil bernaise.
At the moment I’m just popping them in my mouth straight from the jar!



3 Comments on Pickled Blueberries

  1. kathryn mcclelland
    December 31, 2016 at 11:49 am (3 years ago)

    Hi nims,
    i just made up a few jars of this and i was wondering should i just store them in the fridge or should I boil them to lock in the seal on the ball jars and then store them in the pantry?
    If i can’t eat at Jam Pantry I will recreate your delicacies in America!

    • nims
      January 1, 2017 at 7:31 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi Kathryn,
      You don’t need to boil them. Keep them out of the fridge until they’ve hit the desired flavour and crunch. I keep mine on the bench for about 3 days and then just store them in the fridge. If you want to keep them for a longer time or give them as gifts, screw the lid on tight once you’ve poured over the hot pickling liquid and tip the jar upside down until they cool. This will create a vacuum and they can sit on your bench for a couple of years (if they last that long!) nims xx

    • Melia
      January 26, 2017 at 7:24 pm (3 years ago)

      Your story was really inotamrfive, thanks!


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