Since we're in the midst of prime blackberry season, I recently went blackberry picking! Some wild blackberry brambles grow near my house, so I decided to harvest my own crop. If you have blackberries growing nearby or plan to visit a u-pick farm, be sure to check out my blackberry pointers when you read more.
- Ripe blackberries have a dull black color.
- They should be starting to get soft when touched. If they are too firm, they're not yet ripe and will be sour to taste.
- Look for plump, juicy "fruitlets" — those tiny pockets of juicy goodness that make up a blackberry.
- Blackberries do not ripen after they've been picked. So while you may see lots of pretty, bright magenta berries, don't pick those — they aren't fully ripened.
- If you're not planning on consuming them immediately, store blackberries in the refrigerator. Leave loose on a shallow pan or dish that allows them to breathe. Don't wash them until you're planning to use them (moisture will promote bacterial growth), and keep them refrigerated for a maximum of two days.
- When you're ready to eat the blackberries, wash them very carefully in cold water, and drain them — never soak them in water. Remove any that appear to be bruised or decayed, and dry the rest gently with a paper towel.
Do you have blackberry bushes near your house? Share your blackberry picking stories with me below!