I was so rushed for time that I have no photos of this quick and tasty canning session! Salal grows everywhere here and the harvest was quick and easy thanks to the Swedish Small Berry Scoop I got from Lee Valley Tools. What a great tool!!
I started with about a gallon of Salal berries and ended up with 3.5 pints of jam. Delicious! I did not use very much sugar since I wanted the unusual flavor of the berries to stand out. It's a bit smoky and earthy compared to a blackberry for example. The texture is rather gritty but to me it's like caviar, a tiny satisfying "pop" of a seed. Not the kind that gets stuck between the teeth. Salal has lots of pectin naturally and so I did not add any pectin to the jam, and it just cooked up like a dream.
I Googled around to find other comments about Salal berries and found some very interesting resources, including several good blogs which I added to my Google Reader lineup. Here they are:
Red Cedar, a really cool eastern Vancouver Canadian blog by Megan Eliza with the tagline of "More apocalypse, less angst." The link leads to her post about Salal and other jams.
Narrating Landscapes, "the ethnobotanical relationship database" has some great info all about Salal. Narrating Landscapes is a fascinating Wikipedia-like"collection of entries on plants, people, places and times, as well as their uses and meanings." Well worth clicking over to for a browse! The info goes way beyond recipes.
Good recipes for Salal can be found at Golden Maples Farm's web site. They are in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Salal Berry Ice Cream Sandwiches
Talk about recipes! Check out The Herbalist's Path, from Mt. Hood, Oregon
Check out their cool recipes and instructions for making Salal Berry Salad Dressing and Salal Berry Wine!
Also I found a basic Salal Berry Jam Recipe on the Seattle Times Online.