I have the hands of a washer woman. I wish I could return them as I would quite like mine back. Although now I come to think of it, they were never that great in the first place. I blame the NHS. My years in Nursing and Midwifery not only robbed me of my youth, thanks to hibiscrub, they robbed me of silken soft skin too.
But I digress. Life aboard Wand’ring Bark has been a mucky business this trip. Partly due to the weather. Partly due to the blackberries. Partly due to the 17 year old packing a pile of dirty or too small clothes. The joys of parenting *sigh* Consequently, laundry was necessary.
I decided to combine it with a spot of Blackberry Ketchup making to liven it up a little. As you do. The Captain and I had picked nearly 1.5 kg in the park besides our mooring at Newark. I needed to do something that didn’t require overnight straining as I have been banned from the galley tomorrow. Something to do with tides and bores and such like? Must be serious as life jackets are being insisted upon.
So Blackberry Ketchup sounded just the thing. Once I’d got it to the simmering stage I dug out the washing which has to be done at the kitchen sink anyway. Within minutes my hands were red raw. By time I’d finished a modest number of smalls and the odd tee shirt I’d rubbed blisters across my knuckles. I’d like to think it is because I was born for better things that my skin is so fine. But we all know that would be a lie. I just need to train the teenagers better. Or invent self-cleaning clothes. Which, frankly, is far more likely!
The ketchup faired rather better. It is not as thick as I imagined it would be and is more like a sauce (next time I shall reduce it for longer), but it tastes lovely and is recommended for cold meats. I rather fancy it at our next barbecue.
No photo yet because I’m without laptop. The battery died and needs recharging but I blew up our inverter trying to whizz up some rosehips with my hand held blender – oops!
1/2 tsp mustard powder
2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
600mls cider vinegar
Wash and drain blackberries. Place in pan with enough cold water to come half way up. Cook until soft and juices run – about 30 mins. Mash with a potato masher then press through a sieve and measure the purée. For every 600ml, add 100g of sugar. Return to clean pan with sugar, spices and vinegar. Bring to boil and simmer gently until thick – about 1 hour. Pour into sterilised bottles and seal.