Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

In the woodland valleys of Central California, Elderflower trees have been in bloom all spring with their prolific, lacy white blossoms.  I've enjoyed making Elderflower syrup, candied elderflowers and sweet Elderflower Tempura.  A few days ago, I noticed that some of the trees are starting to bear fruit -- diminutive, tart little berries, deep purplish-blue growing in heavy clusters.  

Inspired by a love of biscuits and jam, foraging, and adapted from a recipe from Simply Beyond Herbs, I whipped up a simple and delicious jam made from the foraged Elderberries, fresh blueberries and using chia seeds for a perfect jammy consistency.

Enjoy and Happy Foraging!
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Elderberry-Blueberry Chia JamYield: One half-pint jarAuthor: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 10 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 20 M An easy and delicious sweet-tart jam to make from foraged Elderberries. Ingredients:1 1/2 cups elderberries, rinsedPinch of salt1 cup blueberries, rinsed2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds1/2 Tabl…

CAKE ART TUTORIAL: How to Make "Brass Buttons" from Rolled Fondant

Last week at Rook No. 17, the first in a series of cake art tutorials was launched with a video and step-by-step instructions for "HOW TO MAKE BUTTONS FROM ROLLED FONDANT".

Today, in Part II of the series, I'm sharing my technique for making embossed "brass" buttons.



How to Make "Brass Buttons"
from Rolled Fondant
(To print, click the "Print Friendly" icon at the bottom of this post)

Black Fondant
(or white fondant tinted with black gel food coloring -- wear gloves!)
Corn starch
Rolling pin
circle cookie cutter
A real brass-style button
Soft, loose bristled paint brush
Lemon Extract
Luster Dust, "Ultra Gold"
Small bowl
Small paint brush

1.  Lightly dust a clean work surface with corn starch and roll fondant to 1/4".

2.  Cut discs with a circle cutter.

3.  Lightly dust the face of the real button with cornstarch using the loose brush, and press button in to the surface of the fondant disc to make an imprint. 

4.  Put imprinted fondant disc on a fingertip or round fondant tool and gently rotate, allowing gravity to form a convex curve.  Set buttons aside to dry for 20 minutes.

5.  After 20 minutes the buttons will have hardened and will be easier to paint.  In a small bowl, mix a small amount of lemon extract and luster dust to form a paint that is not too thin, but not pasty either.

6.  Brush the gold paint on the face and sides of the fondant button.  Set aside and allow to dry completely (at least 1 hour).

7. Optional: To give your buttons a shinier, more polished look, use a dry brush, and a bit of dry luster dust on the dry buttons.  Gently burnish the luster dust in to the button to achieve a high shine.  

Buttons can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

This is the vintage-style button, before step 7

And a more polished-style button, after Step 7

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