Autumn Foraging – Berries & Brambles

Autumn is upon us, the nights are drawing in, which means there are lots of plants to forage before the Winter cold really hits. I’ve been out and about gathering for the Neilston Food Trail and this week found the Brambles (Rubus fructicosus or Blackberries, they’re definitely brambly here) have just started to ripen.

Bramble / Blackberry foraging is extremely satisfying, you can try as you pick, get purple dyed fingers and you don’t really have to process them if you don’t want to / can’t be bothered. There are dozens of recipes for sweet bramble treats like jam, crumble and muffins – so I decided to take a more savoury angle this year and try some bramble vinegar.

Bramble Vinegar Recipe

This is a really simple recipe, which just needs a bit of time. It also works well with raspberries – a couple of late ones sneaked their way into this batch.

Soak 450g washed brambles in 600ml white wine vinegar for 3-5 days.

Strain the mixture through a muslin or jelly bag for up to 12 hours – get out all the juices but none of the pulp.

Heat the liquid with ½ lb sugar to every ½ pint of liquid until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, simmer for 5 minutes, cool and store in clean bottles.

Use in salad dressings, with honey as a marinade for meat or with hot water as a drink for colds.

Other berries coming up this month include Elderberry; Hawthorn berry; Rosehip & Juniper with the Ground Elder having a re-growth as we speak and loads of roots to take advantage of – they’ll have stored up goodness for the plant for Winter and as long as you do it responsibly and with permission, you can pick a few here and there. Ask someone if you can dispose of a few of their Dandelions or if you’re lucky, find someone with first year Burdock.


4 responses to this post.

  1. […] autumnal already. A quick walk in the park today turned up plenty of Rowan, ripening Hawthorn and Bramble and some fantastic polypore mushrooms (great cooked with garlic on toast). I also finally found my […]


  2. […] of anti-oxidant vitamins and is a great anti-viral. You can make a syrup for coughs and colds or a culinary vinegar for salad dressings and marinades. You will know that your Elderberries are ready for picking when […]


  3. […] find the idea of drinking vinegar a bit off-putting. The basic recipe for any Fruit Vinegar is here.  Although it’s a bit late for foraged fruits here in Glasgow, you can also use shop-bought […]


  4. […] I have a lot of Elderflower Recipes of the boozy and non-boozy varieties and, one of my favourites, Elderberry Vinegar, I thought, why not combine the two and look in to some Elderflower […]


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