Get brambling!

5th September 2017 In Season

Without a shadow of a doubt, we think that the best berries in the world come from Great Britain. Whilst the season for raspberries and strawberries is now over, the autumn season heralds the arrival of the magnificently tasty bramble.

And yes, we call them brambles! However, the naming of these shiny black beauties does vary depending on where you live. The Scots and those from the North of England tend to call them brambles, whilst our cousins further south call them blackberries. But whatever you call them, they are absolutely delicious and the berry season certainly goes out in spectacular style each year.

The Bramble is actually a thorny, fruiting shrub of the rose family, famous for its berries which are loved by people and animals alike. They grow well in a variety of habitats including woodlands, hedgerows, gardens, cliffs, roadside verges and even waste ground. Its dense bushes provide valuable protection for nesting birds and a good habitat for a range of other small animals. White or pinkish flowers appear between May and September and juicy black fruits are visible throughout the autumn. The thick, arching stems of the scrambling plant are protected by an army of sharp thorns.

You will see bramble bushes growing freely in the hedgerows, woodland and lanes as you are out and about and we would encourage you to take an empty ice cream container with you when you go out for a walk. Watch out for the prickles and they will stain your fingers, but they are well worth the effort and it doesn’t take long to pick a couple of pounds. Great in pies, crumbles and cheesecakes but they are also quite delicious in your gin and tonic! Bramble sauce tastes great with venison, or serve the berries whole with pigeon and other game birds. Add bramble coulis to ice cream, pancakes and jelly or layer with meringue for a show-stopping pudding.

Versatile and delicious, they also freeze superbly well and provide a lovely treat during the winter months, but don’t be tempted by the tasteless, commercially grown fruit found in supermarkets, which bear no absolutely no resemblance to the real thing.

Brambles are normally at their best throughout September and into October, gorgeous, free and fun to pick – be sure to get out brambling this Autumn.