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Do not skip breakfast, I repeat, do not skip breakfast! If you are really pressed for time, at least get into the habit of gulping down a smoothie before you head out or pour it into a handy container to drink on your way to work. Try this healthy and satisfying strawberry banana smoothie from Jessica Gavin to keep you energized throughout the day. If you prefer blueberries, this smoothie recipe from Love and Olive Oil is the one you will be making every morning.

I used almond milk for both smoothies making it suitable for vegans and lactose intolerant people as well as those wishing to cut down on calories and fat from cow’s milk. While the price tag may be somewhat prohibitive, you will be happy to know that you can often find almond milk cartons marked down to half price discounts at every end-of-month sales, so do keep an eye open for them in the organic section of your local grocery store or supermarket.

STRAWBERRY ALMOND MILK SMOOTHIE

 

Ingredients:

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 large banana, sliced

1/4 cup almonds raw

1/2 cup old fashioned oats

2 cups strawberries, frozen

2/3 cup almond milk

1 teaspoon pure honey

Method:

  • Add all ingredients into a blender. Blend for about 90 seconds until the mixture is smooth.

  • Add more honey as needed. Top with chopped almonds, strawberry or bananas if desired.

  • Add more milk as needed to achieve desired consistency as recipe yields a thick smoothie.

 

BLUEBERRY ALMOND MILK SMOOTHIE

Ingredients:

1 banana, peeled

1 cup frozen blueberries

1/2 cup almond butter

1/2 cup plain yogurt

3/4 cup almond milk

3 dates, pitted and chopped

1 cup crushed ice

Method:

  • Combine all the ingredients in a blender and purée on high speed until the mixture is smooth.

  • Add ice cubes and blend until the smoothie reaches your desired consistency. Makes 1 serving.

Almond Milk Smoothies

My latest péché mignon is the anything-blueberry-dessert and with the abundance of blueberries on the market at the moment, I do not need an excuse to be baking with them almost every other day. Other than my standard blueberry muffins, I like to fold them in pancake batter or scatter them over a colourful fruit salad or simply as a topping for my boring morning muesli. This blueberry crumb cake from BarbaraBakes is packed with juicy berries and is nicely complimented by the addition of lemon zest. I chose to omit the lemon glaze for fear of going over the top with too much sugar, and also because I did not want anything to prevent me from focusing on my blueberries.

BLUEBERRY CRUMB CAKE

Ingredients:

For the Blueberry Cake

2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon kitchen salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup white granulated sugar

2 large eggs, room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup full cream milk

1 tablespoon lemon zest

2 cups fresh blueberries

For the Crumb Topping

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons butter, melted

For the Lemon Icing

1 cup powdered sugar

1-2 tablespoons lemon juice

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF. Spray a 9-inch spring form cake pan with non-stick cooking spray with flour.

  • Prepare topping by combining sugar, flour and butter in a small bowl. Mix until crumbly and set aside.

  • In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar until fluffy.

  • Add eggs, vanilla and milk. Mix in lemon zest. Add flour mixture and mix just until it is just combined.

  • Stir in blueberries and spread batter evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle the cake with crumb topping.

  • Bake at 350ºF for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

  • Prepare the lemon icing by whisking together powdered sugar and lemon juice to create a thin glaze.

  • Drizzle the icing onto warm cake and cool completely before cutting and serving. ­Makes 12 servings.

Blueberry Crumb Cake

Welcome to our July Bakealong Challenge. Each month, we’ll announce a new recipe for you to try, along with helpful tips and step-by-step instructions here on our blog. We invite you to bake this month’s recipe, Blueberry Hand Pies, then share a photo of your creation, tagging it #bakealong. Have you ever baked a pie? I hope so! There’s nothing quite so brag-worthy (and delicious, of course) as a beautiful home-baked pie. But once you cut into it and start serving, with the perfect amount of thickening in the filling, and a bit of luck, you can cut Instagram-worth slices. But one wrong move, and you have disaster on a plate.

So what’s a hand pie? Think of it as a turnover with four sides. Rather than the traditional rectangle of classic pie crust pastry topped with filling and folded into a triangle, a hand pie has the filling tucked inside a square packet of pastry. It’s easy to pack and tote to a picnic or potluck, and looks pretty on a plate. Blueberry Hand Pies feature a rich, easy-to-make crust, tender and flavorful thanks to both butter and sour cream. The filling is simplicity itself: blueberries, sugar, and lemon juice, with a bit of thickener. With fresh blueberries flooding the market right now, hand pies are the sweetest little single-serve dessert you could ever put together.

BLEUBERRY HAND PIES

Ingredients:

For the Pastry

241g all purpose flour

3/4 teaspoon kitchen salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

227g cold unsalted butter

113g sour cream

For the Blueberry Filling

2 cups blueberries

14g cornstarch

67g white caster sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

14g lemon juice

For the Topping

1 large egg, beaten

25g white sparkling sugar

Method:

  • Whisk together flour, salt, and baking powder. Add butter, working it in to make a crumbly mixture.

  • Leave butter in large, pea-sized pieces. Add sour cream and stir until mixture starts to come together.

  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, and bring it together with a few quick kneads.

  • Pat into a rough log, and roll into 8-inch x 10-inch rectangle. Dust both sides of the dough with flour.

  • Starting with a shorter end, fold it into three like a business letter. Flip dough over, give it a 90° turn.

  • Roll it again into 8-inch x 10-inch rectangle. Fold it in three again. Chill dough for at least 30 minutes.

  • To make the filling, place fresh or frozen berries into a saucepan. Whisk the cornstarch with the sugar.

  • Pour it over berries. Add salt and lemon juice, stirring to combine. Place saucepan over medium heat.

  • Cook blueberries, stirring, until the small amount of liquid in the bottom of pan comes to a simmer.

  • Reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until mixture starts to thicken.

  • Transfer the cooked berries to a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

  • To assemble the hand pies, roll the dough into 14-inch x 14-inch square on a lightly floured surface.

  • With a straight edge and a pastry wheel, or a 3 1/2-inch square cutter, cut out sixteen 3 1/2″ squares.

  • Divide the blueberry filling among eight of the squares, using about a heaping tablespoon for each.

  • Brush egg along the edges of each filled square. Cut a vent into each of the remaining eight squares.

  • Top each filled square with a vented square, and press along the edges with the tines of a fork to seal.

  • Brush each pie with beaten egg, and sprinkle with sparkling sugar. Transfer to prepared baking pan.

  • Bake pies for 18 to 20 minutes until they are light golden brown. Cool for 20 minutes before serving.

KAF July 2017 Challenge

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PrerrnaMirchi
Mauritius

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