When Kate from The Veg Space announced that this month’s We Should Cocoa theme would be to pair chocolate with blackberries, I admit that I was less than enthusiastic. I love chocolate and I love blackberries, but I don’t think of them as going together in desserts. Blackberry is a delicate flavor that seems like it would be easily overwhelmed by the dark chocolate that I love. Additionally, we have been trying to eat a few less desserts so I needed to make something that wouldn’t have a lot of leftovers. I noticed that Choclette from Tin & Thyme used a chocolate blackberry jam in a lovely galette which I thought was very interesting. Poking around through my Pinterest account in search of inspiration, I came across a chia seed jam. Ah ha! I had been wanting to try using chia seeds in jam, so why not try making a Chocolate Blackberry Chia Seed Jam?
Chia seeds have all kinds of good nutrients and fiber in them and seem to be all the rage right now. Ironically, I had a much easier time finding Chia seeds than I did finding frozen blackberries! We do have some fresh blackberries still in our farmer’s markets and stores, but they are ridiculously expensive. Since I was going to be cooking and straining them anyway, I wanted to go the economical route. The jam was pretty easy to make, with the exception of the work involved in de-seeding the blackberries. That step isn’t strictly necessary, but those blackberry seeds really get stuck in my teeth so I wanted them gone. After cooking the blackberries to soften them and then de-seeding them, the remaining juice and pulp is simmered with the Chia seeds for only 5-10 minutes, just until it begins to thicken. Taking the jam off the heat, I stirred in a handful of bittersweet chocolate chips and let them melt before stirring again to smooth out the mixture. A little vanilla and a pinch of salt and my jam was done.
The jam is delicious and I’m so glad I tried it! I can taste both the blackberries and the chocolate, which makes me very happy. While we’re still essentially eating fudge for breakfast on our toast, the Chia seeds and blackberries at least make it seem healthy. Thanks for the inspiration, Choclette!
- 1 lb. frozen blackberries
- 2 T water
- 2 T granulated sugar
- 3 T Chia seeds
- ½ tsp. vanilla
- small pinch of salt
- 3 oz (85g) 65% bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- In a saucepan over medium heat, cook the blackberries and 2 T of water for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the blackberries are soft enough to crush with the back of a spoon.
- If you don't care for seeds, mash the blackberries through a strainer to remove the seeds. If you aren't bothered by the seeds, continue on with the next step.
- To the remaining pulp, add the sugar and the Chia seeds.
- Cook over medium-low for another 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate. Let it sit for a minute or two to melt, then stir well to completely combine the chocolate and blackberry mixture. Stir in the vanilla and a pinch of salt.
- Let cool to warm and then spoon into a jar.