Just a few strides from my back door, there are sundry treasures growing in the woods. As is my custom early every summer, I recently went looking for black raspberries.
Wild black raspberries (also known as “blackcaps”) are quite seedy, but they’re a wonderful treat; if you can find some in your ‘hood (“the East Coast to the Rockies, but not in the deep South” according to Wildman Steve Brill), you are lucky indeed. But you’d better hurry: you’re competing not just against a short season (about 3 weeks), but the birds who love them dearly, as well.
Sadly, “my” wild black raspberries disappeared before I could gather more than a few handfuls (thanks to said birds). So I’m thinking about transplanting some of the canes to my garden (here’s how); my plan is to cover them with bird netting, so that I can actually enjoy a whole bunch of them next summer and beyond.
But that’s a long way off, so I was ecstatic to find these pretties at The New Paltz Farmer’s Market this weekend :)
These berries were so tasty! I flirted with the idea of baking with them, but decided I really just wanted to enjoy them raw. So I put them into this parfait which I ate as a protein, anti-oxidant, and healthy fat-packed afternoon snack (and for breakfast a few times this week, too).
I don’t usually sweeten my plain yogurt when I eat it with fruit, but I mixed in some homemade honey rosewater “syrup” (inspired by the book Edible Cocktails) here because black raspberries are a bit tart. I also figured the subtle flavor of the rosewater would play nicely with the walnuts: I think I was right.
If you can’t find black raspberries, go ahead and substitute any other berry that you like, or use your imagination with the fruit and nuts that you add. If you don’t eat dairy, you can try this with coconut milk yogurt.
Double everything and add additional layers for a bigger, prettier, parfait.
Recipe for Black Raspberry, Walnut, and Honey Rosewater Yogurt Parfaits
Yield: 1 parfait
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Honey rosewater syrup is easy to make: just heat 1/2 cup of a light local honey with 1/2 cup of rosewater for a minute or so, give it a good stir, then transfer to a glass jar and cap tightly. Use to sweeten/flavor plain yogurt, tea, pour over vanilla ice cream, drizzle into sparkling water, mocktails, or cocktails...have fun with it!
*1/2 cup plain yogurt (I used Cabot Greek-style plain yogurt)
*1-2 teaspoons (or more to taste) honey rosewater "syrup" (instructions above in the headnote), or use plain honey or maple syrup instead
*ripe black raspberries, rinsed, dried and "picked over"- as many as you want
*handful or more of chopped walnuts
1. In a small bowl, mix the honey rosewater syrup into the yogurt. Spoon into serving dish, and top with the berries and the walnuts. Drizzle additional syrup on top, if you like.
Honey rosewater syrup inspired by Edible Cocktails: From Garden to Glass - Seasonal Cocktails with a Fresh Twist.
On a separate note, isn’t it cool how the same blue background looks completely different in each photo here just because of where I was standing in relation to the light? I really love making photos :)
More fun with black raspberries:
Wild black raspberry info from Local Kitchen
Very small batch wild blackberry jam from Food in Jars
Black Raspberry and Vanilla Ice Cream from Naturally Ella
Disclosure: California Walnuts generously sent me the walnuts that I used in this recipe. All opinions are 100% my own.