Saturday, July 25, 2009

Local Blueberries Are In!

Blueberries. They are cute and little and really delicious, especially fresh from the farm like they are right now.

Blueberries are all over the health and wellness news right now because they are high in antioxidants, but their benefits don't stop there.

Check out this stuff from

Blueberries can do amazing things such as:
Fight Aging
Improve Memory and Learning
Lower Cholesterol
Improve Vision
Prevent Macular Degeneration
Improve Brain Function
Prevent and Fight Cancer
Prevent Urinary Tract Infection
Aid In Weight Loss
Act as a sleep aid
Fight Osteoporosis

Unfortunately, blueberries are one of the foods that are sprayed heavily with pesticides, so it's wise to buy organic or transitional. If you happen to be buying them from the farm stand or farmer's market, you could always ask the farmer what was sprayed on them.

Here is a great summer dessert that can be served at a casual get-together or works nicely as a more formal dessert. I made this recipe eight years ago for one of the first dinner parties I did when I started private cheffing, using individual 4.5" tart pans. They turned out beautifully and I still love this recipe for it's simplicity and style.

The original version from "Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant" used all white flour, white sugar, and cornstarch. My updated version substitutes those ingredients since they are the most processed ingredients in the recipe. The outcome of the filling is the same, but the crust comes out a bit sturdier and with more depth.

If you are trying to cut out sugar, you could mix a little agave nectar with a packet of stevia powder instead of straight agave.

Summer Blueberry Tart
adapted from "Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant"

sweet pastry crust:

1 c whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 c unbleached white flour
2 T agave nectar
1/2 c chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1 egg yolk
1 T fresh lemon juice
1-2 T cold water

Cut butter into flour with a pastry blender or quickly with your fingers, until mixture is crumbly.

Whisk together egg yolk, lemon juice, and 1 T water. Sprinkle liquid over the butter-flour mixture and gently stir with clean hands until a ball of dough forms. Don't overwork the dough. If it is too dry to form into a ball, add one more Tbsp water.

On a floured board, gently roll it out into a large circle. Gently lift into a 9" or 10" tart pan. *
Make it look nice by patching any holes and smoothing out or fluting the edges. Cover lightly with plastic and chill for 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lay a square of foil over crust and pour 1/2 c dry beans onto it to prevent the crust from puffing up while it bakes. Bake 15 minutes. Remove foil and beans and bake 5 minutes more. Set aside and let cool.


5 c fresh blueberries
2 T water
1/4 c agave nectar
1 T arrowroot dissolved in 2 T water

Heat 2 cups of the blueberries with 2 T water and agave nectar. Crush a few of the berries to release the juices and that wonderful bluish purple color, then add the dissolved arrowroot liquid. Simmer on low for 10 minutes, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and fold in remaining blueberries.

Pour mixture into baked pie shell. Cool for one hour (preferably at room temp.) before serving.

*you can use a pie plate or a bunch of mini tart pans, as an alternative.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bloobarry Cat sez: I can haz tart?