Get ‘piggy’ with blueberries

Published 4:54pm Wednesday, June 23, 2010

With the Blueberry Festival still a fresh memory in our minds it may be a good time to decide how to best use the berries while they are still in season.

After experiencing some of the best blueberry dishes over the years I have grown to enjoy the berry very much. A man I know buys cases and cases of the blueberries while they are in season just so he can have blueberries in his cereal all year round.

We’ve all had cobbler and pies and have probably even had a blueberry muffin or two in our lives. Because of that, I’ve decided to search out some recipes and ideas on how to use the blueberry that may be just a little different.

I think I’ve succeeded with a couple of pretty interesting recipes. There really isn’t much you could do to a blueberry to mess it up unless you burn the dish! I hope you’ll consider one of these recipes.

Blueberry Pigs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup shortening

6 tablespoons cold water

4 cups blueberries

1 pinch ground cinnamon

1/4 cup white sugar

1/4 cup butter, chilled and diced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in water until mixture forms a ball. Divide dough in half and shape into balls. On floured surface, roll from center to edges into 12 inch circle. Avoid rolling too thin.  Spread approximately 2 cups blueberries on each rolled pastry, or enough to make a single layer of blueberries leaving a 2 inch border. Sprinkle with cinnamon, sugar and slices of butter.  Roll pastry like a jelly-roll, tucking the ends as you roll, and place on a cookie sheet. Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes, or until golden brown.

If you are lucky enough to have plenty of blueberries, you may want to give this idea a try. This recipe turns out to be almost identical to the pie filling you buy canned in the store. You’ll find it’s great to have on hand  to pull out of the pantry and add to a crust for a pie or to drizzle over the top of cheesecake or ice cream.

Blueberry Pie in a Jar

7 quarts fresh blueberries

4 1/2 cups white sugar

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon salt

10 cups water, divided

1 cup cornstarch

Place the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice, salt, and 8 cups of water into a large, non-reactive pot, and bring to a boil over high heat. Dissolve the cornstarch in the remaining 2 cups of water, and stir into the boiling blueberries until thickened. Cook and stir for 2 minutes more.  Ladle into 7 sterilized quart jars with lids and rings. Process in a pressure canner for 5 minutes at 5 pounds of pressure. Remove jars from the canner and place on cloth-covered or wood surface, several inches apart, until cool. Once cool, press top of each lid with finger, ensuring that seal is tight (lid doesn’t move up or down at all). Sealed jars can be stored for up to a year.

Don’t forget to drop me a line or leave a comment here about the recipes found in this space. If you have a recipe you’d like to share I’d love to hear from you!

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