Blueberries are still showing a good yield at the grocery stores and fabulous prices. So, it’s time to implement them in salads, baked goods and desserts.
But what about this winter? Definitely time to freeze them too. At our home the easiest way to freeze the blueberries is to freeze ‘as is’. Don’t wash, leave them in the basket, from the store. Set inside a Ziploc bag and freeze until needed. If you must wash before freezing; drain well and place on a jelly roll pan to dry all day, before they hit the cold air. You want to keep as much moisture from the berry as possible. Freeze and then bag the berries, in this process.
As most are aware blueberries are a great antioxidant. Great to throw into a smoothie every day. Remember to use the smallest berries in baked goods and put them in frozen. Some will even roll the berries, in flour to try and keep any ‘bleeding’ into the dough, at a minimum.
One thing you do want to remember when working with the blueberry is to use higher amounts of thickening agents, with frozen berries. I’ve been fighting this issue with one of my fresh blueberry pie recipes. I was using cornstarch and arrowroot to thicken the pie, but the outcome was not to my liking. As soon as I switched to Minute Tapioca my pies were perfect. Also if you are thickening pies with tapioca, which I have done for years, with my fruit pies, here’s another tip. Place the tapioca in a coffee grinder and make the product into more of a powder. In fact, if you can find tapioca flour, this is even better.
Strawberries and blueberries are beautiful on top of a summer salad or served at breakfast, with a bowl of yogurt and granola. Personally I like my fruit at room temperature with no accoutrements.
Last night my husband, Ervin & I, went out for a nice steak dinner. The meal was quite enjoyable, but I kept imagining it at home without all the extra sodium. I didn’t know you could add so much salt to a steak!!! We concluded our meal with a fresh cup of Community Coffee (Louisiana Joe) which, in my book is one of the best! When we came home I couldn’t believe it, I feel asleep and forgot to write my column, before retiring! In over 12 years this was a first for me.
Enjoy the easily made crepes, they’re fun, quick to make ahead of time and simply refreshing on the palate. Go forth, smile and make the world wonder what you’re up to. Simply yours, The Covered dish. www.thecovereddish.com
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
1 (6 ounce) lemon yogurt
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1/2 cup powdered sugar
3 cups fresh blueberries
Persimmon Hill Farm’s
Amaretto Blueberry Syrup
Powdered Sugar to garnish
Cream together cream cheese, sour cream and yogurt, gradually bring together the remaining ingredients, whisking to blend. Spread about 2 tablespoons of the filling inside each crepe and then place several berries on top. Roll the crepe and place seam side down on dessert dish or platter. (If it’s a good presentation keep the seams up.) Before serving drizzle extra interior sauce over the crepe and sprinkle with powdered sugar and additional fresh fruit. Or, use alternative sauces i.e.: Persimmon Hill Farm’s Amaretto Blueberry Syrup as the top garnish. Serves 12-16.
*For those who enjoy more lemon zing use additional zest.
Basic Crepe Recipe
2/3 cup unsifted flour
3 tablespoons cooled, melted butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
Oil or your preference for cooking the crepes
Mix all the batter ingredients together with 1/2 cup of the milk, (use electric mixer) then add the last 1/2 cup of milk. Beat again, refrigerate covered for 3 hours or overnight. To cook: Slowly heat up a 7 inch sauté’ skillet; brush lightly with oil. Place 2-3 tablespoons of batter in skillet and turn to cover the bottom. Cook over medium heat until they are golden brown; turn and brown on opposite side. Cool, stack with wax paper between each crepe. This should make about 15 crepes. Consider making ahead of time and freezing!
*There are lots of different batters on line, even chocolate!
Crepes are one of my favorite dishes to make for guests. Because they are a bit more time intensive it shows you ‘care’ when you present this as a main entrée or dessert.
There are many, and I do mean many ways to switch out the fruits used in these crepes. The first time I made them they were strawberry. Follow the seasons of the year and you’ll always have a good outcome. Guests often ask me if they can obtain crepes pre-made in their local grocery stores. The answer is: ‘sometimes’.
You can usually purchase them from a large food distributor, however it means you’ll be purchasing 100-150 crepes.