Tag Archives: blueberry

Low Fat Blueberry Tartlets

blueberry tartelettes tf  Posted by Lynda Balslev

Go ahead, indulge yourself. These gorgeous blueberry tartlets are rich and creamy, fragrant with lemon, bursting with fruit and not-too-decadent. Why? The luscious filling is 100 percent yogurt, not cream cheese or mascarpone. The trick is to choose a full fat Greek-style yogurt. It’s thick and silky, with a tang that perfectly offsets mellow, inky blueberries. The crust is a traditional graham cracker crust, which, yes, has brown sugar and butter (as any self respecting graham cracker crust should). So these tarts are just a little bit wicked, but it’s a dessert after all, and what’s wrong with being a little wicked anyway?

Blueberry Tartlets with Yogurt and Lemon

Makes 1 (10-inch) tart or 6 to 8 individual tartlets

Crust:
10 ounces graham crackers (or sweet digestive biscuits)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

Filling:
2 cups whole milk Greek-style yogurt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar (or honey)
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 cups blueberries
Lemon zest for garnish

Heat oven to 350°F (180°C). Combine the graham crackers, sugar, cinnamon and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Process until crumbly. Add butter and pulse until the crust is blended and beginning to stick. If using a tart pan, dump the crumbs into a 10-inch tart pan, pressing with fingers evenly over the bottom and up the sides. If using individual tart dishes or ramekins, divide the crumbs between 6 to 8 ramekins and press the crumbs evenly over the bottoms and up the sides. Transfer to a baking sheet. Bake in oven until crust begins to turn golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove and cool completely on a rack.

While the crust is cooling, whisk the yogurt, sugar and lemon zest in a bowl. Pour the yogurt into the cooled crust, smoothing the top. Dot the yogurt with blueberries. Garnish with lemon zest. Refrigerate until serving, up to 4 hours.

Pear, Plum and Blueberry Crisp with Walnut Streusel

Plum Pear Blueberry Crisp

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Nothing says summer better than a fruit crisp which effortlessly absorbs the season’s bounty. Let the market dictate your choice of fruit. Then fold the ripest gems – winey plums, tender pears, juicy blueberries – into your well loved and slightly worn ceramic dishes. Sprinkle with a little sugar and spice and crown it with a nutty streusel topping.

Plums Market

For this fruit crisp, I let the St. Helena farmers’ market do the talking.

Pears market

and ended up with this:

Pear, Plum and Blueberry Crisp with Walnut Streusel
and Armagnac Whipped Cream 

Serves 8 to 10

Streusel:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled
1/2 cup walnuts, lightly toasted and chopped

Armagnac Whipped Cream:
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons Armagnac

Filling:
1 pint blueberries, divided
6 ripe but not too soft pears, such as Bartlett or Anjou, cut in 1-inch chunks
6 plums, pitted, cut in 1-inch chunks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Prepare the streusel:
In a large bowl, whisk together all the ingredients except the butter and walnuts. Add butter and work into the topping with your fingertips until the it resembles coarse meal. Stir in the walnuts. Cover and refrigerate until use.

Prepare the whipped cream:
Beat cream in bowl of electric mixer with a wire whisk until thickened. Add sugar and armagnac. Continue to beat until soft peaks form. Refrigerate until use. (May be made up to 4 hours in advance.)

Prepare the crumble:
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking dish.
Place half of the blueberries and the remaining filling ingredients in a large bowl. Gently stir to combine. Pour into the baking dish. Scatter the remaining blueberries over the filling. Spoon the streusel evenly over the top. Bake in the oven until the crisp is bubbly, the pears are soft, and the topping is golden brown, about 50 minutes. Remove and cool slightly. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature with whipped cream.

Blueberry Tartlets with Yogurt and Lemon

Blueberry Tartlets with Yogurt and Lemon - recipe by Lynda Balslev

Go ahead, indulge yourself. These gorgeous blueberry tartlets are rich and creamy, fragrant with lemon, bursting with fruit and not-too-decadent. Why? The luscious filling is 100 percent yogurt, not cream cheese or mascarpone. The trick is to choose a full fat Greek-style yogurt. It’s thick and silky, with a tang that perfectly offsets mellow, inky blueberries. The crust is a traditional graham cracker crust, which, yes, has brown sugar and butter (as any self respecting graham cracker crust should). So these tarts are just a little bit wicked, but it’s a dessert after all, and what’s wrong with being a little wicked anyway?

Blueberry Tartlets with Yogurt and Lemon

Makes 1 (10-inch) tart or 6 to 8 individual tartlets

Crust:
10 ounces graham crackers (or sweet digestive biscuits)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

Filling:
2 cups whole milk Greek-style yogurt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar (or honey)
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 cups blueberries
Lemon zest for garnish

Heat oven to 350°F (180°C). Combine the graham crackers, sugar, cinnamon and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Process until crumbly. Add butter and pulse until the crust is blended and beginning to stick. If using a tart pan, dump the crumbs into a 10-inch tart pan, pressing with fingers evenly over the bottom and up the sides. If using individual tart dishes or ramekins, divide the crumbs between 6 to 8 ramekins and press the crumbs evenly over the bottoms and up the sides. Transfer to a baking sheet. Bake in oven until crust begins to turn golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove and cool completely on a rack.

While the crust is cooling, whisk the yogurt, sugar and lemon zest in a bowl. Pour the yogurt into the cooled crust, smoothing the top. Dot the yogurt with blueberries. Garnish with lemon zest. Refrigerate until serving, up to 4 hours.

Black and Blueberry Clafoutis

~ Blackberry Clafoutis ~

Here’s a riddle: What do a basket of berries and 3 eggs have in common? A light and simple dessert called clafoutis. Clafoutis is a baked French dessert similar to flan, consisting of fresh fruit smothered in a lightly sweetened egg batter. The result is a pudding-like concoction redolent with seasonal fruit.

Berries are everywhere now, lining the tables at the farmers market and teetering on shelves at our local store. Never one to hold back, I pile them into my basket and head home, nibbling on my purchases while thoughts of tarts, jams and fools run through my mind. Sometimes, when time is short, I know I will make  a clafoutis.


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Clafoutis is remarkably quick and easy to prepare with a short list of ingredients. The result is rustic yet elegant, generously showcasing the season’s fruit. Bake the clafoutis in a gratin dish or cast-iron skillet. If you would like to fiddle with presentation, divide the batter between individual ramekins. I had a little extra batter left over and filled asian soup spoons for a dessert inspired amuse-bouche.

~ Blueberry Clafoutis ~

Berry Clafoutis
Makes 1 – 10 inch clafoutis or 8 – 6 ounce servings.

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup whole milk
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 ounces (350 g.) fresh berries, such as blackberries, blueberries, raspberries
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 375 F. (190 C.) Butter a gratin dish, cast iron pan or ramekins.
Beat sugar and eggs in bowl of electric mixer until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Mix in cream, milk, flour, lemon zest, vanilla and cinnamon. Set aside.
Arrange berries in the tart pan. Pour custard over the fruit. Bake in the oven until the filling is golden brown and set, about 35 minutes. (If using ramekins, baking time will be reduced to about 25 minutes). Remove and cool slightly. Before serving, dust with confectioners sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream.

Summer Berry Tian

~ Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries: summer in a dish ~

This berry tian highlights the ease of summer in its simplicity of ingredients and preparation. The season’s best fruit – strawberries, blueberries and raspberries -are blanketed with a cardamom-infused custard and baked, resulting in a refreshing and delightful dessert. Tian is a french word for a shallow earthenware casserole, often gratineed, an appropriately simple and elegant name for this dish. Enjoy warm or chilled.

~
Summer Berry Tian (2 ways)

This recipe results in a thick liquid custard filling, begging for a spoon. For a more souffle-like consistency, add the optional egg whites. Makes 4 – 6 ounce tians.

6 ounces raspberries
6 ounces blueberries
8 ounces strawberries, hulled, quartered
Zest of one lemon
4 eggs, separated
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350 F. (180 C.) Butter four 6-ounce shallow ramekins. Sprinkle with a little granulated sugar, tapping out excess. Place ramekins on a baking tray. Arrange raspberries, blueberries and strawberries in one layer in ramekins. Sprinkle with lemon zest.  Whisk egg yolks and sugar in a bowl until light and fluffy. Stir in cardamom and cream. (If using egg whites, beat in a bowl of an electric mixer until firm. Stir 1/4 of the egg whites into the egg yolks and mix to combine. Gently fold in remaining egg whites).
Pour egg mixture over fruit. Bake in oven until golden brown and custard is set on top (it will still wobble when jiggled), about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on racks. Serve warm (not hot) or chilled. Garnish with extra lemon zest.

Blueberry Crumble Bars

Simple, sweet and oozing with fruit, Blueberry Crumble Bars are dessert’s answer to comfort food. I was in the mood for something just like this – an unfussy, child-friendly dessert that would please all ages. Prompted by a bag of blueberries in my freezer – a lingering souvenir from last summer – I thought of a blueberry cookie bar. After a quick scan of the web for inspiration, I spied a recipe at Smitten Kitchen, by way of allrecipes. This was exactly the kind of dessert I wanted to  make: A recipe passed from kitchen to kitchen, tweaked with each rendition and then handed off to the next home cook. So, now I pass this recipe on to you – with just a few more tweaks. There is nothing complicated about this recipe, except the challenge of not eating too many in one go.

Blueberry Crumble Bars
Makes 16 – 20 bars

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 large egg
Zest and juice of one lemon
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 375 F. (190 C.) Butter an 8 inch square baking pan. Line with parchment and butter parchment.
Combine flour, 3/4 cup sugar, baking powder and salt in bowl of food processor. Pulse to blend. Add butter and egg. Pulse until dough resembles coarse crumbs. Pulse in lemon zest.
Whisk 1/4 cup sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch and cinnamon together in a bowl. Add blueberries and stir to combine.
Evenly spread half of the dough in the prepared pan. Spread blueberries evenly over the dough. Top with remaining dough. Bake until golden brown and bubbly, 45 minutes. Remove and cool to allow the flavors to develop and the bars to firm up.

Pear Plum and Blueberry Crisp with Hazelnut Streusel

Pear Crisp tf

When I have a lot of fruit lying about, I make a crisp. It’s an efficient way to use up ripe fruit, and a perfect expression of the season’s ingredients. Not only that, it’s a great way to serve dessert to a crowd. Unfussy to prepare, the assembled crisp may be refrigerated up to 3 hours before baking. For a dinner party I’ll pop it in the oven when we sit down to eat the main course. Then it’s ready and piping hot when it’s time for dessert.

Feel free to combine several fruits in a crisp. I like to mix 2-3 types of fruit, choosing for a variety of colors and textures as well as a balance between sweetness and tartness in flavor.  Pears are prominent at the farmer’s market now as well as late season plums and berries. For this crisp I combined softly sweet bosc pears with spiced plums and tart blueberries.

Pear Plum and Blueberry Crisp with Hazelnut Streusel

Serves 10-12

For the topping:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled, cut in 1/2″ cubes
1/2 cup toasted, skinned and chopped hazelnuts

For the filling:
6 large Bosc pears, about 3 pounds, peeled cored, cut in 1″ chunks
6 plums, halved, each half quartered
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
zest from one lemon
1 pint blueberries

Prepare topping:
Mix flour, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together in a medium bowl. Add butter and rub in with fingers until topping resembles coarse meal. Mix in hazelnuts. (Topping may be prepared up to one day in advance. Refrigerate until use.)

Prepare filling:
Preheat oven to 375 F. (190 C.)
Combine all of the ingredients except the blueberries in a large bowl. Toss to combine. Spread in a rectangular baking dish. Scatter blueberries over the filling. Cover the filling evenly with the topping.
Bake until bubbly and golden brown on top, about 50 minutes. Remove and serve warm or at room temperature with vanilla or cinnamon ice cream.

Summer Comfort Food: Nectarine, Blueberry and Raspberry Crisp

Nectarine Raspberry Crisp

I confess to being a glutton when it comes to stone fruit. There is a window of time when peaches, apricots, nectarines and plums run rampant at the market. Vibrantly hued and mottled in purples, oranges, fuscias and crimson, their flesh is a perfect balance of sweet, tangy, winey, and tart.  I could eat them all day long, but then my stomach would hurt.  At this time when these gifts are abundant, I tend to overshop. My kitchen counters are lined with bowls and baskets brimming with fruit.  So, it’s no surprise that even in our home, all of this fruit cannot be eaten at their peak of ripeness.  Some start to get a little too ripe, buried at the bottom of the bowl, or even passed over for the newest batch from the market.  As I said, I have indulgence issues.

This is the moment when a crumble or crisp comes in handy.  It’s desserts’ equivalent to a homey vegetable soup.  Gather up all the ripe, somewhat passed fruit (as you might with vegetables for a soup), cut and chop and pile them in a baking dish.  Garnish with berries and pile on the topping.  The tartness of the berries balances the sweetness of the stone fruit, and with little added sugar the result is a rich, murky, sweet – but not cloying, perfumed stew of summer fruit. It’s best served warm, but not piping hot, since that will mask the flavor of the fruit. A dollop of high quality vanilla ice cream or whipped cream adds a cool foil to the warm, more-ish fruit.

Nectarine, Blueberry and Raspberry Crisp
Serves 8

For the topping:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut in small cubes

For the fruit:
2 pounds nectarines (or combination of nectarines, plums, peaches), halved and pitted, cut in 1″ chunks
1 cup raspberries
1 cup blueberries
2 tablespoons sugar

Prepare topping:
Combine dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.  Mix well to combine.  Add butter, and work in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. (Topping may be prepared one day in advance.  Cover and refrigerate until use.)

Prepare crisp:
Preheat oven to 350 F. Arrange nectarines in rectangular baking dish.  Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sugar.  Arrange raspberries and blueberries over nectarines.  Cover fruit evenly with topping. Bake in oven until topping is golden brown and fruit is bubbling, 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool briefly.  Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Red White and Blueberries: Strawberry and Blueberry Shortcakes


Shortcake 2

A celebration of summer and independence are two good reasons to throw a party, and the fourth of July is perfectly timed to take advantage of the season’s fresh berries. Fireworks and barbecues are de rigueur as skies and grills light up across America. With a nod to the colors of the American flag, this traditional dessert is fresh and festive, making use of an abundance of summer berries while stirring up nostalgic memories of easy summer living.

Strawberry and Blueberry Shortcakes

Serves 6

For the biscuits:
2 cups all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup chilled, unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
1 cup buttermilk

For the berries:
1 pound strawberries, hulled and halved
12 ounces blueberries
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest

For the whipped cream:
1 cup whipping cream
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Prepare the biscuits:
Preheat oven to 400 F.  Sift the flour, 4 tablespoons sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Mix in the butter with fingertips until dough resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk and stir until sticky dough forms. Drop dough in mounds on ungreased baking sheet.  Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Cool 15 minutes.

Prepare the fruit:
While the biscuits bake, combine strawberries, blueberries, sugar, mint, lemon juice and zest in a bowl. Toss to coat. Let stand 30 minutes (can be prepared 2 hours ahead.)

For the whipped cream:
Beat cream in a bowl of electric mixer until traces of the beater appear. Add sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until soft peaks form, taking care not to overbeat.

To assemble shortcakes, cut each biscuit in half and arrange bottom half on individual serving plates. Spoon berries with juices over; top with whipped cream. Arrange biscuit top over cream.

Blueberry Crumb Cake

Blueberry Crumb

Sunday at the farmers market means lots of blueberries at this time of year. I made a blueberry tart last weekend that was a big hit. This weekend I am keeping it rustic and simple, and will set aside a few blueberries to make this cake. This recipe is humble and homey. I blend whole wheat and white flour and use brown sugar in place of granulated sugar, lending richness and texture to the cake. Lemon zest, a no-fail partner with blueberries, lightens and brightens the flavor. Serve this cake for brunch or tea along with a pitcher of lemony iced tea.

Blueberry Crumb Cake

For the crumb topping:
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold, in pieces

For the cake:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups blueberries, divided

Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter a square baking pan.

Prepare crumb topping: Mix flour, sugars and salt in a bowl. Work butter in with fingers or pulse with a food processor to form a clumpy texture. Set aside.

Prepare cake: Mix flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg together in a large bowl. Mix butter and brown sugar together in a bowl of an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla and lemon zest. Whisk eggs and sour cream together in a medium bowl. Mix 1/3 dry ingredients into the butter and sugar. Mix in 1/2 of the eggs. Repeat process finishing with last 1/3 of the dry ingredients. Stir in 1 cup blueberries. Pour batter baking pan. Top with remaining blueberries. Sprinkle crumb topping over blueberries. Bake in oven until a knife inserted in center comes clean, about 1 hour. Serve warm or at room temperature. (The flavors will develop as the cake cools.)