Blackberry Picking Time

Food and Travel, In Season, Ingredient, Recipes, Regional Food, Summer
on June 25, 2012

When wild blackberries are in season, it's hard to resist their pull. Despite the chiggers and other biting bugs that lurk in these thorny shrubs, the tiny berries are a must. Around here, people jealously guard the sites of their favorite blackberry patches, but there are some that are hard to hide. Located on the greenway at Shelby Bottoms public park in downtown Nashville, Tenn., several blackberry patches are scattered along the 4 1/2 mile main trail and along all the side trails—paved and grass. They're loaded with berries every summer.

Wild blackberries are much smaller than their cultivated kin, so picking a quart of the wild variety takes much longer than picking at a U-pick farm. But just as tiny wild Maine blueberries are prized for their sweetness, so too are wild blackberries.

Here's a recipe to make with the tiny blackberries. If you have peaches, add them too, but it's great with berries alone.

—Candace Floyd, Relish Managing Editor