The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware: Triple Berry Jam


The Facebook book club I’m part of read The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware for September’s choice. I’ve read In a Dark, Dark Wood by Ware and enjoyed it. I thought The Turn of the Key was even better. I rated it 5 out of 5 stars on goodreads. At the date I am writing this review the book has been rated 4.03 stars.

A true psychological thriller and mystery, The Turn of the Key is quite exhilarating with twists and turns I was not expecting. Set in the UK, Rowan gets a new gig as a nanny for a family living in a house out in the boonies. The house is all up to date with the newest and the best types of smart house technologies. When Rowan begins working with this family she quickly learns something is amiss. Is it ghosts? Is someone messing with her? But the loud music that pumps through the speakers, the doorbell consistently ringing – who is doing this to her? What does it mean?

I’m not going to tell you, because that would ruin the fun.

The Turn of the Key is written in the form of a letter. From jail Rowan writes the best lawyer she has heard of a compelling reason why he should take her case.

Food included in this book was:

  • Beef casserole with horseradish creme fraiche stirred in.
  • Toast and marmalade.
  • Porridge.
  • Ice cream.
  • Chocolate chip cookies, juice, pizza.
  • Popcorn.
  • Pasta and pesto with peas mixed in.
  • Mini rice cakes.
  • Picnic of sandwiches, crisps, and rice cakes.
  • Alphabetti Spaghetti.
  • Cake.
  • Cappucino.
  • Berry jam.
  • Hot chocolate.
  • Tea and biscuits.
  • Bacon sandwich.

As Rowan tries to make sense of the strange happenings in the house, she looks up the history of the house online. The children had mentioned in passing that they knew something bad had happened in the house. That’s when Rowan learns that the former residents had lost their 11-year-old daughter after

“she had died from eating Prunus laurocerasus, or cherry laurel berries, which had been accidentally made into jam.”

Poison jam you say? For my murder mystery thriller? Sounds great!

Don’t worry. No Prunus laurocerasus was used in the making of my jam.


Triple Berry Jam


1/2 pint fresh raspberries
1 pint fresh blackberries
8 oz fresh strawberries, cut into chunks
1 cup sugar
pinch of salt
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice


  1. Set your berries in a bowl. Mix together with sugar and set aside for 10 minutes.
  2. Add to a pot. Set to medium heat and bring to a boil. Add the lemon zest and juice and salt.  Reduce heat to medium-low.
  3. Gently simmer for 15-20 minutes. Use your spoon to break down the berries as they get soft.
  4. As the jam cools it will start to stiffen up. Pour into a mason jar. Cover once completely cool and refrigerate.

This recipe is being shared with Foodies Read, Novel Reads, & Creative Muster,

8 thoughts on “The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware: Triple Berry Jam

  1. Good that you didn’t use any poison berries in your jam!! I keep finding more and more good kinds of jam, but I haven’t made it myself … I really should.

    best… mae at


  2. Your jam looks fabulous! (And very glad to learn that laurel cherries do not figure in the ingredients list…)
    Thank you for the recommendation of the novel; I’m now No.490 (only 45 copies) on our library’s hold list. I read the first couple of pages in the preview and can’t wait until the book arrives.


  3. A ghost/hacker messing up with home technologies? I like the idea, though it sounds like it didn’t quite agree with the novel’s protagonist. Nice-looking “safe” jam: I see scones on the horizon. Thank you so much for your contribution to Novel Food 🙂


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