by Charlie Reese

Blackberry Desserts

In Oregon where I live, people tend to view the blackberry bushes as kind of a nuisance. The fact is that blackberry is an invasive species, and a species that is outcompeting many of the native ones. They grow like nothing else.

They spread like wildfire. If you leave a blackberry bush to grow in your garden for a couple months, soon it will have taken over the whole place. Nonetheless, there is a good side to all of these blackberry bushes: blackberry desserts.

Having the luxury to pick wild berries to make a blackberry dessert anytime you want is pretty great. Within a block of my house, there are literally dozens of blackberry bushes around. I can spend maybe an hour picking different blackberries and, by the time I’m done, have enough for a delicious blackberry cobbler.

Cobblers are a great desert to make if you aren’t familiar with baking. They are so easy to make that anyone can do it. All you have to do is mix a little flour with some sugar and oatmeal and bake it as a crust on top of blackberries. That is all.

Of course recently I have become adventurous with my blackberry desserts. I actually downloaded some recipes onto my Blackberry organizer, believe it or not. Blackberry dessert recipes are pretty common on the Internet. A lot of people have learned to live with the rapidly growing invasive plants and decided to make the best out of them.

And the best is pretty good. You can make some of the most delicious desserts imaginable with very little effort. You can make blackberry cookies, pie, or even ice cream. My grandmother had a great recipe for blackberry sherbet that she taught me last time I visited. It was delicious, and that is no lie!

One of my favorite tips for preparing blackberry desserts is to pay attention to the kind of berries you pick. Most people believe that the riper the berry, the better the desert. For many things this is true, but not always. If you use younger, tarter berries, you can get an interesting tang to your desert. If you use the really overly ripe sweet ones, you can get a luscious richness of flavor. Just by varying which berries you pick, you can change the quality of the desert you make. It is amazing how many different things you can do with just a few simple ingredients.

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