Monday, June 1, 2009

It's Thyme for Berries

Just this past week we visited Green Meadows Farm  
a small certified organic family owned blueberry farm located just outside Tallahassee in the community of Monticello. I arrived with my family and friends to pick the season's early crop of blueberries. We arrived in the early evening when the humidity and warm temperatures had subsided. What a beautiful evening to pick blueberries! Never having picked fresh blueberries, I found the experience to be, well, therapeutic. Our pleasure was only doubled when we were allowed to eat all the blueberries that we wanted while picking our hands purple.  An hour later, we had 7-lbs of fresh ripe blueberries,  not a clue as to how were going to store or eat them.  All of it did not matter, we had our blueberries. Mrs. Green the owner of the farm would help us out with advice for storing the berries.
  • After you pick blueberries don't transport in a plastic bag or container, a paper bag is best.
  • Blueberries will remain fresh in your refrigerator for up to 14-days
  • Don't wash your fresh blueberries until just before using
  • If freezing your berries, don't wash them.  Store in plastic freezer bags (making sure to get all the air out of the bags).
I am not a very good baker  (it has something to do with not following directions very well) and rely on my husband for this talent.  As always, he never disappoints me with what he can whip up even a fresh batch of blueberries did not daunt him.

Blueberry Shortcakes with Lemon and Thyme Biscuits
 recipe from (Bon Appetit June 2009)

4 cups fresh blueberries rinsed, drained well
2/3 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons water

3/4 cup chilled buttermilk
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2-1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
1- 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
1 tablespoon raw sugar
vanilla ice cream or lightly sweetened whipped cream

Berries: Combine all ingredients in large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until berries are slightly softened and syrup coats spoon, about 10 minutes. Transfer to medium glass bowl. 
Do ahead Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Biscuits: Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit . Line large rimmed baking sheet with silicone baking mat, smooth side up, or parchment paper. Mix buttermilk, lemon peel, and thyme in small bowl. Whisk next 5 ingredients in large bowl to blend, breaking up any large clumps of brown sugar with fingertips. Add butter and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk mixture and stir with fork just until blended (dough will be sticky). Transfer dough to lightly floured work surface. Knead gently just until dough comes together, 4 to 5 turns ( do not overwork dough or shortcakes will be tough). Pat dough out to 3/4-inch thick round. Using 3-inch diameter cookie cutter dipped in flour, cut out dough rounds. Gently gather dough dough scraps and pat out to 3/4-inch thickness. Cut out additional rounds, for 6 rounds total. Transfer dough rounds to prepared baking sheet, spacing apart. Sprinkle dough with raw sugar. 

Bake biscuits until golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool slightly.

Using serrated knife, carefully cut biscuits horizontally in half. Place bottom half of each biscuit on each of 6 plates. Spoon blueberries and syrup over, dividing equally.


waytenmom said...

YUM!! This looks delicious, and the prospect of therapeutic blueberry harvesting (in the cooler early evening) sounds divine!!

Chris said...

Did you take that picture? Either way the recipe looks amazing!

Velva said...

Yes, I take all the photos for the blog. The recipe was amazing! Thanks to Uncle Fred.

Bailey said...

Looks delious

Jeff said...

I like what you said about picking fruit as a form of therapy. It is so true.

Anna and I are patiently waiting for the strawberry season, which is next in New England, where I fill the basket and she fills her mouth!

Awesome blog, beautiful photos!

K. said...

Soon we can pick strawberries here. I think this week. So, we will definitely try the short cake recipe when we do.

Gayle said...

Looks wonderful!

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