Remember the book, Blueberries for Sal, by Robert McCloskey? “Little Sal picked three berries and dropped them in her little tin pail…kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk! She picked three more berries and ate them. Then she picked more berries and dropped one in the pail – kuplunk! And the rest she ate.” Well, that’s obviously the best way to enjoy fresh blueberries. But here are the three that tie for second place.
Blueberry Scones with Lemon Glaze
(makes 8 large or 16 small scones)
This is basically Tyler Florence’s recipe from his book Real Kitchen. I’ve made these so many times that I have just tweaked the mixing and shaping method a little bit and simplified the glaze. Once you get the hang of it, you can whip these up in just 15 minutes or so.
2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into chunks
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
a couple of tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Sift together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Using 2 forks, or a pastry knife, or even your fingers, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it looks like coarse crumbs.
Add the blueberries and toss gently distribute them. Make a well in the center of the mixture and add the cream. Now gently fold everything together to incorporate. This is important: don’t overwork the dough or crush the blueberries. You are just trying to moisten the flour mixture so that it will hold together a bit. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Gently press dough into an 8-inch square. Don’t be concerned if the dough is barely holding together. Use a large knife to cut the square into four smaller squares. Cut each of these on the diagonal, either once or twice, depending on whether you want 8 large or 16 small scones. Transfer to a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool for a bit before you apply the glaze…otherwise it will just melt off.
For the glaze: sift confectioners sugar into medium bowl and whisk in lemon juice a bit at a time until you get a nice consistency that you can use to drizzle over the scones. (A fork works nicely for glazing.) Let the glaze dry for a few minutes before serving.
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Little Lemon-Blueberry Tarts
This is my own fancied up version of the Lemon Ice Box Pie that I grew up with in Mississippi.
1 package Pepperidge Farm Chessmen Shortbread cookies
3 Tablespoons melted butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 large egg yolks
4-5 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
I cup heavy cream
1 Tablespoon confectioner’s sugar
72 big fat juicy fresh blueberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.To make the crusts: You will need a nonstick 24 count mini muffin pan. These come in several different shapes and sizes. I prefer the more wider and more shallow muffin tins but this recipe will work with whatever shaped pan you have. (However, a nonstick pan is a must.) Process shortbread cookies and melted butter in Cuisinart until finely ground. Press about one heaping teaspoon into each mini muffin well, (amount may vary based on the shape of your muffin tins) making sure to cover the bottom and bringing the crumbs at least halfway up the sides. You can use your fingers for this or the bottom of a little shot glass can help speed up this step.
For the filling: Whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, the egg yolks and 4 Tablespoons of the lemon juice. Taste and add extra lemon juice if needed. Stir well. Fill tart shells with filling. Once again, the exact amount for each tart will vary depending on the size of your muffin tin. Just make sure that the filling just barely reaches the top of your crumb crusts. Bake for approximately 10 minutes. Look for the filling to be a bit puffed up and obviously hot throughout, but you are not waiting for the tops to be browned. Cool tarts for 15 minutes then put the whole pan, uncovered, into the refrigerator to cool thoroughly for several hours.
Whip the cream and the confectioners sugar until it can hold a gentle peak. Wash and dry the blueberries.
When the tarts are completely cold, use a little sharp knife to release the edges of each tart and then reach down with the tip of the knife to gently pop each tart out. Arrange tarts on a serving platter and finish each with a good dollop of whipped cream and three perfect blueberries.
This recipe is from Pure Flavor, by Kurt Beecher Dammeier. It is wonderfully moist coffee cake….perfect for breakfast, brunch or after school snack. You can store it in the fridge and warm slices in the microwave for 20-30 seconds.
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon grated lemon zest
pinch of table salt
3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 large egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoons table salt
2 cups fresh blueberries, (only if in season) or frozen blueberries
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round baking pan.
Make the topping by combining the flour, sugar, lemon zest, and salt in a small bowl. Using a fork, cut the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs, Set aside.
To make the buckle, use a hand held mixer or a stand mixer with the flat beater attachment. Beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until fluffy, scraping the bowl once or twice while mixing. Blend in the vanilla and lemon zest. Add the egg and mix on medium speed to combine, scraping the bowl once.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
Add the milk and the flour mixture alternately to the butter mixture, beating until smooth on medium to low speed after each addition. Pour the batter in to the prepared pan, top with the blueberries, and sprinkle with the topping.
Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle of the buckle.
The buckle will keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. You can also wrap it in plastic wrap and freeze it for up to 1 month.