Thursday, June 23, 2016

Blueberry Buckle with Blueberry Sauce Celebrating "July is Blueberry Month"

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 It's July and the blueberries are plentiful. In fact, July is National Blueberry Month in the USA and this year, 2016, celebrates 100 years of the cultivation of the high bush blueberry. A perfect month to make a classic blueberry buckle with blueberry sauce. Often called a slump or crumble, a buckle consists of a rich cake batter with fruit sprinkled on or incorporated into the batter, then a streusel is added before baking. As the cake cooks, the batter rises up around the fruit causing the cake to "buckle".  Perfect as a dessert surrounded by a blueberry sauce or warmed for breakfast. Although blueberry is the classic version, almost any fresh fruit can be substituted.

Blueberry Buckle with Blueberry Sauce


2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed and drained on paper toweling

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9 x 9 x 2-inch baking pan. I used my 9"cast iron pan, well buttered.

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder. Set aside. Cream the softened butter and lemon juice, then gradually add the brown sugar creaming well. Beat in the egg. When incorporated add the reserved dry ingredients alternately with the milk. The batter will be very thick. Fold in the blueberries. Spread the batter in the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the Crumb Topping below. Bake in preheated oven for 40-45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted comes out clean. Cool on wire rack. Cut into squares or rounds and spoon over the Blueberry Sauce, recipe below Crumb Topping.

Crumb Topping

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces

In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour and cinnamon. With a pastry blender, cut the butter into the dry ingredients. 

Blueberry Sauce

6 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon cold water
1-1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice 
2 cups fresh blueberries, washed and drained on paper toweling
1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened

In a saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and ground cinnamon. Stir in the cold water, fresh lemon juice and blueberries. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture reaches a boil. Reduce heat to medium and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the juice thickens and loses it cloudy appearance. Remove pan from heat and stir in the softened butter. Serve warm or cold. Great over ice cream, too!

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Thursday, February 25, 2016

Broa de Milho (Portuguese Cornbread) We Knead to Bake #36

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Pão de Milho, (Broa de Milho) began as an essential bread in the poorer areas of Portugal. Corn was brought to Portugal and Spain by fisherman and whalers while sailing the New England coastline. The corn was ground and mixed with wheat or rye flour to make a lovely crusty bread to serve with the traditional Caldo de Verde, a potato and kale soup.

Portuguese cornbread is a slightly dense bread with a fine texture made by first cooking the cornmeal in boiling water, then letting it cool before adding the remaining ingredients. I found it an easy bread to make and will definitely make it again. Aparna chose the Broa for We Knead to Bake #36. 

Below are some images of a bakery I visited while in Portugal this past November while on a Viking Cruise on the Douro River. This from Favaios, Portugal where Muscatel wine was invented and where a famous bread is baked. 

Broa de Milho
Original Recipe
King Arthur Flour


1 cup fine yellow cornmeal 
3/4 cup very hot water
1/2 to 3/4 cup warm milk
2 teaspoons instant yeast
2 -1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
Extra flour for dusting

Place the cornmeal in a bowl, add the hot water and mix together well with a fork. Add 1/2 cup of the warm milk. Mix all together until you have a paste. Let cool to lukewarm. Add remaining ingredients and knead with by hand or mixer. I used my bread machine on the dough cycle. When cycle has finished, remove to a lightly floured surface. Knead a few times and let rest, covered for 5-10 minutes. Preheat oven to 450°F. 

Shape into a ball and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Dust with flour, cover loosely and let rise for about an hour until puffy. Just before baking, if desired, make 3 or 4 slashes 1/4-inch deep on the crust. Spritz the top lightly with water and bake at 450°F for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 400°F and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool on wire rack. Slice and serve. Makes 1 round loaf-about 12 slices.

This post has been submitted to Yeast Spotting

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