For the past couple weeks, whenever I’m at the market, it’s hard to resist the urge to dance around yelling, “The blueberries are here! The blueberries are here!” They are more than just here, they are perfect right now. I love fresh picked Michigan blueberries. The smell alone differentiates our Michigan farmers’ blueberries from those poor, plastic-clam-shelled, shipped, chilled, blue Florida or Jersey marbles at the grocery stores. So – go – quick – to the farmers market or to a u-pick. Enjoy as many as you can….and then, of course, freeze some! Rinse, pick off stems and leaves, spread out on a cookie sheet and stick it in your freezer. The next morning, bag those berries up really quickly, and back into the freezer they go. Ready when you need them 6 months from now.
Blueberries are very popular in our house – fresh and frozen. One small, cute person who lives with us will eat a whole pint before we leave the market. Said small person also eats them frozen right out of the freezer bag, but she has to plead with Chef Jeff to give some up. He monitors the frozen berry inventory fastidiously to be sure the supply allows year-round blueberry pancakes. Chef Jeff’s blueberry pancake recipe works equally well with fresh and frozen berries.
This time of the year, though, blueberries are not just for breakfast. When the carnivorous mood strikes – try some local ground meat with, yes, blueberries! I found this recipe for Blueberry Burgers on Kate’s irreverent blog 4obsessions. Blueburgers work well with either fresh or frozen berries – so save some of the frozen ones and freak out your football fanatics this fall.
Now I must admit that as an occasional meat eater I didn’t appreciate what all the fuss was about grass-fed, free-range beef….until I tasted some burgers prepared with ground beef from Old Pine Farm. All I can say is – TASTE! That is what the fuss is about. As Kate points out, though, lean grass-fed beef can dry out during cooking, so this blueberry addition boosts the juiciness. My guess is this recipe would work well with ground buffalo, too.
For a dinner prepared earlier this spring we used some ground beef from TMZ Farm; the blueburgers were topped with a sauté of Michigan Mushrooms and spring onion from Goetz Farm. And that’s a side of roasted Locavorious cauliflower grown by the Wilczewskis and a salad of greens from Brines Farm.