Home Cooking Recipes
home cooking recipes                                            home cooking recipes
Quick & Easy
By Beverly Barbour

Blueberries and popcorn have something in common

It only takes one kernel of popcorn or one blueberry popped into your waiting mouth to make your mouth automatically pop open hoping for more. Blueberries are better for you, of course, and eating popcorn is a year round sport, so this is the time to turn your fingers to those dark blue exploding balls of flavor. They are so good. Thank heaven they are also versatile and can be used in many ways. It is a further blessing that when fresh blueberries aren't in season you can use frozen. A package of frozen berries is equal to 2 cups of fresh.

Melt-in-Your-Mouth Blueberry Cake

Perfect for breakfast, a snack or a dessert.

2 eggs, separated
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter or 1/2 cup solid shortening
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup milk
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 F and grease an 8-inch square baking pan. Beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in 1/4 cup sugar and continue beating until stiff and glossy; set aside. In a large bowl, cream butter. Add salt and vanilla and then gradually beat in 3/4 cup sugar. Add egg yolks and beat until light and fluffy. Remove 2 tablespoons flour to a small bowl. Sift together the remaining flour and baking powder. Alternately completely mix the dry ingredients and the milk into the butter mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Stir in 1/4 of the egg whites to lighten the batter. Gently fold in the remaining egg whites. Toss the blueberries with the reserved 2 tablespoons flour. Fold into the batter. Turn into pan. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar over the top. Bake 40 to 55 minutes. Let cool before serving. Makes 6 servings.

Blueberry Sorbet

A dazzling rich color and flavor and its simple to prepare but once the sorbet softens, it does not refreeze well.

8 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup water

Puree blueberries in a blender or food processor; transfer to cooking pot. Add sugar, lemon juice and water; stir to dissolve sugar. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Strain into a bowl and set aside to cool. Freeze in an ice cream maker using manufacturer's instructions. Makes 6 cups.

Blueberry Galette

A galette is a pie without a pie pan, baked on a cookie sheet. For maximum pleasure, serve with whipped cream, lemon sorbet or lemon ice cream. You can make lemon ice cream by softening a pint of vanilla ice cream and adding a tablespoon of finely grated fresh lemon zest, then refreezing.

1 pound (3 cups) fresh or frozen blueberries
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 refrigerated (9-inch) pie dough crust
1 tablespoon cold butter, cut into pieces
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 425 F with oven rack in middle position. Line a large baking sheet with foil; butter the foil. Stir together blueberries, cornstarch, zest, juice, cinnamon, salt and 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl. Unwrap pie dough and unfold onto cookie sheet, then spoon blueberry mixture onto center of dough, leaving an 1 1/2-inch crust border around edge. Fold edge of dough over 1-inch of blueberry mixture, pleating dough as it overlaps edge of filling, then dot blueberry filling with butter pieces. Lightly brush pastry with some of beaten egg and sprinkle with remaining teaspoon sugar. Bake until filling is bubbling and pastry is golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool slightly and serve warm. Makes 6 servings.

Best Ever Blueberry Muffins

Follow instructions carefully when adding ingredients and be careful not to overmix the batter.

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, at room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup finely ground yellow cornmeal
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup milk
2 1/2 cups blueberries

Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease 12 regular muffin cups or line with paper liners. Using electric mixer, cream butter and 1 cup sugar together. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add baking powder and mix well. Add vanilla extract and lemon zest; mix well. In another bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, salt and cinnamon. Add half of this dry mixture to the batter and mix lightly; then add the milk and stir well. Add remaining dry mixture and stir just enough to combine; do not overmix. Fold in blueberries. Spoon batter into muffin cups, then sprinkle evenly with remaining 2 teaspoons sugar. Bake in center of oven until muffins are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in center, about 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Then remove muffins from pan onto rack to cool. Makes 12 muffins.

You can't make popcorn muffins, gallete, cake or sorbet!


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