Georgia summers come early and they come hot. One delicious benefit to this is that berry-picking season rolls on for months. We started with strawberries in late March, followed by blackberries and now we have round into summer with my favorite – blueberries.
If you’ve never had the pleasure of picking berries, tsk-tsk. If you’ve never had the pleasure of picking berries with two children in tow, I’m jealous. Ah, I’m kidding. E actually did much, much better than I ever could have anticipated. After our strawberry picking disaster in April, I was hesitant to try again. But like I told you, E has grown up a lot the past few months and this most recent berry-picking experience was, dare I say, fun.
We traveled a bit south of Savannah to Brewer’s Christmas Tree Farm in Midway, GA. When I arrived, Mr. Brewer apologized and explained the blueberries had been picked pretty heavily and he hoped we would be able to find enough. I’m not sure what he considers “enough” but there were plenty.
The set up was great for kids, too. If I remember correctly, the farm has three blueberry groves (is that the proper term?) but we only visited one. It consisted of six rows with about seven bushes in each, growing to about 7 or 8 feet tall. It gave the kids enough space to pick and hide without us crazy Mommas worrying about them running too far.
I strapped B on my back and gave E a bucket and we went a-pickin’. A solid hour-and-a-half later, this girl and I left with a solid four quarts each.
I came home, immediately washed them and set them out to dry before freezing two quarts. Although Mr. Brewer gave us a handy tip on preventing mold growth on fruits (one part white vinegar to 10 parts water, soak and let dry; there is no detectable vinegar taste and it kills the mold spores), I didn’t want to risk it while figuring out how I wanted to allocate my berries.
And there are some fantastic sounding recipes. I spent the afternoon flipping through cookbooks and searching Pinterest for the perfect dishes. I worked so hard for these berries! I didn’t want to waste them on lackluster creations. You need a lot of them to make their presence known in most recipes, so I had to choose wisely. So much pressure! I clearly need something else to focus my energy.
I decided on Roasted Salmon with Blueberry BBQ Sauce from Sheryl Crow’s co-authored cookbook, “If It Makes You Healthy” (Yes, she went there.). Hub liked it, I thought it was fair. As in, not worth 35 minutes worth of standing over a hot stove/oven for just a sauce. And it used up 2 cups of my berries, man.
For dessert, I made this blueberry cobbler recipe.
This dessert was good. Better than good. Quite tasty. But I have to say – I would not consider this to be a cobbler. I mean, it is clearly more of a cobbler than a crisp, but the topping was more cake-like than a biscuit. I did swap in dairy-free “butter” but I’ve never had it effect a recipe. Not that the name really matters, I suppose, because it was awesome and a good use of my precious berries.
I found a delicious-sounding breakfast recipe for blueberries and quinoa, which I thought was an interesting combination. I plan to try it out in the morning, time permitting.
After one cobbler, a tangy blueberry barbecue sauce and two snacking kiddos later, I’m down to about six cups remaining in the freezer. Only six cups! But I still have 32 more blueberry-centric recipes to try! I suppose I need to go picking, again.
What are your favorite blueberry recipes? Since I clearly haven’t made myself nuts, yet.