Oregon Earliblue Blueberry + Chardonnay Jam Recipe

This is a post in our Summer 2020 Wine Jam series! Jam along with us all season long as we transform our abundance of fruit into some delicious treats that are more versatile than you’d think. Today, we’re continuing our summer harvest with…blueberries!

I’m going to be honest – this recipe originally used a different wine. But i just didn’t love the result. I was on the hunt for the perfect wine pairing for blueberry jam and something sub-par just wouldn’t cut it (not for me, and definitely not for you all!)

A bottle of Laurel Ridge Chardonnay

Blueberries are a humble, yet surprisingly complex berry – each handful is a mixed bag, tart and sweet, with a juicy pop of flavor. They’re surprisingly resilient and flexible. They can handle acid or sweetness, they can be dressed up as dessert, thrown on some yogurt, or as an intriguing delight when combined into a savory steak sauce. When I came home with a 5-gallon bucket of Earliblue blueberries from my local u-pick farm, I knew I had to set some aside for a batch of jam. 

In dreaming up a blueberry jam recipe that would be enhanced with wine, my mind kept going back to the wine that has the same, chameleon like quality: Chardonnay. Now, don’t get me wrong –  some Chardonnays have serious attitude – they can be loud and intrusive (like the house guest that laughs just a little too loud at the dinner table) – but our 2017 Chardonnay is none of those things. Our 2017 Chardonnay was fermented in half stainless steel and half neutral oak. We use this method because it develops a white wine that’s soft but vivacious with just the right amount of fruit, which then melts into a lovely buttercream finish. Our style of Chardonnay is not buttery in any traditional sense of the word, but our 2017 Chardonnay makes us think of a buttery shortbread, or stealing a nibble of an all-butter pie crust.

On a whim, I used some of this wine because I already had it open and I couldn’t be happier with the result. Let me tell you – the sky is the limit. I’ve eaten it on bagels (yes), with scones (delicious), reduced it down with Balsamic Vinegar and made a reduction for salmon (fabulous)… Do I need to keep going? If you needed an excuse to open that Chardonnay, I’ve just given you one! And the best part is, there will be plenty of wine leftover to enjoy on the patio afterwards.

Ingredients: 

  • 6 cups fresh blueberries 
  • 1 ½ cups Chardonnay
  • 1.5 cups sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. dried rosemary
  • ¼ cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • Zest of one whole lemon

Directions: 

  1. Place blueberries, wine, and sugar into a large pot. Cook until sugar has dissolved completely.
  2. Add nutmeg, rosemary, lemon juice, and lemon zest.
  3. Simmer fruit mixture for 30-40 minutes. We are waiting for the cooking liquid to reduce (as alcohol burns off), but also for pectin to release from the blueberries to naturally thicken the jam. It is typically an indicator that this has happened when the bubbling slows, the jam gets darker and glossier, and more viscous. 
  4. When the jam seem ready, pull a chilled plate out and dollop jam onto it. Tilting the plate, the jam should not be runny or liquidy, but instead move slowly towards the edge (think molasses!). 
  5. Place the jam into a refrigerator safe container to store, or fill jars to seal using a water bath. Remember, it takes pectin 24 to 48 hours to fully set!

As always, we have a post giving you a couple notes on the canning process, and how we’ve written these wine jam recipes for you. Cheers!

More wine jam recipes in this series:

Coming up:

  • Hot Pepper Jam with 2018 Rosé
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