Kitchen Creations

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Heavenly Blueberries

I've taken a bit of a vacation from blogging; not by design, just by necessity.  The end of the school year sees an increase in referrals for speech and language services and that means testing and paperwork galore.  I haven't been able to find moments to blog but I have CREATED moments to bake.  It's my stress relief and a necessity when the end of the school year rolls around.  Luckily I have a great excuse, my small group Bible study.  I HAVE to provide yummy treats for them each week.  Not because they make me, but because I need to.  It provides the perfect reason to drop everything and bake.  A few weeks ago my younger son joined me in the kitchen to create some of the tastiest treats yet. Living in the Yakima valley for the past almost 2 years, we've discovered a treasure trove of fresh fruit, ours for the picking, literally.  We have taken full advantage of all opportunities and with the help of my canning equipment and a large garage freezer; we've been able to enjoy the "fruits of our picking labor" all year round.  For this recipe I grabbed some of the amazing blueberries we picked last summer. (I have since decided that almost any berry would be great in this recipe.) We went blueberry picking with some great friends and my obsessive compulsive side reared its head.  I could not pull myself away as long as there was a single berry left on a bush.  My husband had to intervene.  I dreamt of picking berries that night.  I digress.  The original recipe comes from The Smitten Kitchen food blog.  I really didn't change much since it is such a simple, straight forward recipe that there was no need.  In fact, my 4 year old kitchen helper did much of the work.  (He is, however, a trained professional, enrolled for the past 5 months in his pre-school's cooking class.)  Don't let the simplicity fool you though.  It looks and tastes completely AMAZING!!!  I made a second dessert on top of this one.  There was one small piece left by the end of the night.  There were only 9 people at small group!!!  If that isn't a testimony to the sheer deliciousness of these bars, nothing is. 

Grab some berries and getting cracking on this pan of deliciousness.

Blueberry Crumb Bars  
3/4 cup white sugar (I cut this down from 1 cup - hey, every little bit helps right?)
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest and juice of one lemon  (thinking of trying lime next time)
1 cup cold unsalted butter (2 sticks or 8 ounces)
1 egg
4 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup white sugar  (also cut this in half because I knew these blueberries were sweet already)
4 teaspoons cornstarch

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
2. In a medium bowl, stir together 3/4 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, and baking powder. Mix in salt and lemon zest. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the butter and egg. Dough will be crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan.
My happy little helper!

Grinning Fiendishly

Working hard

3. In another bowl, stir together remaining 1/4 cup sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Gently mix in the blueberries. Sprinkle the blueberry mixture evenly over the crust.
He has to get is perfectly even.
4.  Crumble remaining dough over the berry layer.
Seriously cute kitchen elf
Up close look before the oven.
 Makes me want to eat it now!

5. Bake in preheated oven for 45-60 minutes, or until top is slightly brown. (It took a full hour in my oven to reach desired color.)

Click here for printable recipe

1 comment:

  1. favorite part of this post is the pics of that kid...miss you guys. xoxo