Add a splash of brandy to home canned blueberries to raise them to a sophisticated gourmet level.
It lends the berries a little bit of warming comfort on cold winter evenings.
Very nice as gifts.
Quantities of blueberries needed
Numbers are approximate guidelines.
On average, as a very rough guideline, expect to need per jar:
- about 175 g (1/2 lb) of blueberries per 1/4 litre (1/2 US pint) jar of canned blueberries;
- about 375 g ( 3/4 lb) of blueberries per 1/2 litre (US pint) jar of canned blueberries;
- about 750 g (1 3/4 lbs) of blueberries per 1 litre (US quart) jar of canned blueberries.
On a larger scale:
- 5 1/2 kg kg (12 lb) of blueberries = 7 litres (US quarts) canned blueberries
- 3 1/2 kg (8 lbs ) of blueberries = 9 x 1/2 litres (US pints) canned blueberries
- 1 x 24 quart crate blueberries = 16 kg (36 lbs) = 18 to 24 litres (US quarts) canned blueberries
1 litre (US quart) whole, fresh blueberries = 750 g (1 1/2 lbs), whole fresh
4 litres (US quarts) fresh blueberries = 3 litres (US quarts), blanched for 30 seconds
1 litre (US quart) blanched blueberries = 1 kg (2 1/4 lbs) of blanched berries
Jar size choices: Either quarter-litre (1/2 US pint) OR half-litre (1 US pint) OR 1 litre (1 US quart)
Processing method: Water bath or steam canning or pressure canning
Headspace: 2 cm (1/2 inch)
Processing time: 15 minutes regardless of size chosen
Home canned blueberries with brandy
Wash berries in batches of 1 or 2 litres (quarts) at a time.
Drain, and get any stems off.
Have a pan of water boiling.
Add the berries in small batches at a time so that the water will come back to the boil quickly.
Let the berries boil for 30 seconds, then fish out of pot immediately with slotted spoon or sieve.
Repeat until all berries are blanched.
Divvy berries out amongst jars, leaving 2 cm (1/2 inch) headspace.
Add 1 tablespoon of brandy per quarter-litre (1/2 US pint / 1 cup / 8 oz) jar OR 2 tablespoons per half-litre (1 US pint / 2 cup / 16 oz) jar OR 4 tablespoons per litre / quart.
Divvy blanching juice out amongst jars, leaving 2 cm (1/2 inch) headspace.
If short of canning liquid, top jars up with boiling water from a kettle.
Debubble, top up with more liquid as required to retain headspace.
Wipe jar rims.
Put lids on.
Process jars in a water bath or steam canner for 15 minutes regardless of size chosen; increase time as needed for your altitude.
Start out with only a small amount of blanching water, just enough to cover the berries, because as you blanch the berries they will release juice and the amount of liquid will increase. That way, you end up with purer and less watered-down juice to use for packing the berries in.
Instead of brandy, you could try cognac, rum or vodka.
The USDA also gives pressure-canning and raw-pack alternatives for canning blueberries.
By the time, though, that you heat and vent a pressure canner, run it and then cool it down, it would take longer than simple steam canning.
Also note that for sugar-free canning of fruit, raw packs are not generally advised.
How to water bath process.
How to steam can.
When water-bath canning or steam canning, you must adjust the processing time for your altitude.
More information about Sugar and Salt-Free Canning in general.
Berries – Whole. United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Complete guide to home canning. Agriculture information bulletin No. 539. 2015. Page 2-10.
Alcohol guidelines are from: Kingry, Judi and Lauren Devine. Ball / Bernardin Complete Book of Home Preserving. Toronto: Robert Rose. 2015. Page 155.
Serving size: 1/4 litre (1 cup / 8 oz / 250 ml)
- 178 calories, 2 mg sodium
- Weight Watchers PointsPlus®: Per 1/4 litre (1 cup / 8 oz / 250 ml): 5 points (while fresh blueberries are 0 on Weight Watchers, processed ones with brandy, etc, would not be.)
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com
* PointsPlus™ calculated by healthycanning.com. Not endorsed by Weight Watchers® International, Inc, which is the owner of the PointsPlus® registered trademark.