Monday, July 2, 2012

My Cup Runneth Over, and My Bowls, and Freezer. .

BLHubby and I had been looking for some land to purchase.  We need a smaller house and would like to build another rental house.  We hit the jackpot and finalized the purchase of over 2 acres near our current home.  The property came with a happy extra. No, not the never used septic system which will save us a bunch.  The Blueberry Bushes!  The property has some fruit trees and a line of 8 mature blueberry plants.  When we first looked at the land, the berries were in full bloom.  It was early evening and they were covered with butterflies and bees.  Now they are covered with marble sized goodness.  I''ve been picking every other day or so and we're about half way through.  What to do with all those blueberries? 
We have 34 bags of frozen blueberry deliciousness.  Each is at least a quart and most are bigger. (I'm not very consistent.) The bottom drawer of the big upright freezer is full so I've changed tactics.
I made a great sauce/topping for a Sam's cheesecake we took to a birthday party and it was so yummy I decided to make so more and can it.  I've got 18 pints and it will be delish over ice cream, pancakes and cheesecake.  I also made a batch of Blueberry Butter.  This idea came from Marisa McClellen of the incomparable Food In Jars blog.  She makes hers in a crock pot but does say that you need an older model because new model slow cookers heat a lot hotter on the lowest setting than they used to.  Someone somewhere determined that you might get sick if the slow cooker didn't bring the food to a higher temp.  I did try this last year and my cooker must not be low temp enough cause my butter burnt.  This time I used my pretty red dutch oven.  I also cut back the sugar (I used half of what Marisa did) and I added a little lemon juice.  I added a little corn syrup to the sauce/topping and while doing so I accidently added a "glug" to the butter. Success!  I ended up with a whole bunch of 1/2 pints. 

With about 4 cups of berries left (after I put about 3 pints in the fridge so we can snack on them fresh) I bought four bottles of white wine vinegar, brought it to a boil and poured it over the berries. I'm making Blueberry Vinegar.  Three months of macerating and hopefully I will have goodness.  I don't know if the white wine vinegar is going to be any better than just plane white vinegar.

The last berries have been hurt a bit by our horrendous hot weather.  Even watered the berries are soft and not plump.  I whirled them in the food processor, brought them to a boil and then strained them through a sieve to make some syrup.  I sweeted it with Splenda so I've got some No Sugar Added syrup to add to lemonade and other stuff.  8 pints. 

The dear man who's been these blueberries founder says that he loves for blueberry season to start and he gets glad that it's over.  Amen.

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