SCRATCH SUPPER: A FRY-UP WITH BLACKBERRY JAM
“I got blackberries, I got blackberries, blackberries.”—street cry, New Orleans blackberry seller
Yesterday at the Greenmarket, I ignored the signs of early autumn—the first apples and acorn squash, collards and kale—and instead stubbornly lugged home corn, tomatoes, melon, and the other usual summer suspects. Fat, shiny blackberries were going for a song, and I bought a boatload, enough for an entire week of greedy fistfuls.
Then the weather changed in a flash from a string of what my mother used to call “Champagne days,” because of their sparkling clarity, to a dank chill, with periods of steady, dispiriting rain.
I looked at the contents of the refrigerator with no enthusiasm whatsoever.
So tonight, our meal was more spartan and rougher than I had planned but still enormously satisfying. We ate ham and fried eggs, done to a crisp frizzle around the edges—and thick pieces of toast with butter and blackberry jam, my favorite.
That jam could not have been more purer or, literally, more immediate-tasting. Faced with a fridge full of blackberries that seemed to be rapidly turning from lustrous to forlorn, my husband casually thumbed through Lenotre, hauled out a big heavy pot, and spent a pleasant, productive morning in front of the stove. That evening, he pried the lid off one of the jars and turned my cobbled-together supper into something sublime.