Every August I look forward to the deliciousness that comes in the form of a blue pea sized fruit. Blueberries. While I typically pick them up at the Farmer’s Market or the farm stand up the road this year I thought ahead enough to order a 10 pound box, actually two ten-pound boxes. And last week I got an email that the berries would be ready and I could come pick them up on Sunday. So guess what I did yesterday?
It was a half hour drive to get to Bill’s Blueberries in Lincolnville Maine. Organically grown and already sifted thru for rocks, sticks, leaves, and mushed berries, each ten pound box is bursting with flavor in the color of blue.
The set up Bill has is quite great – a machine helps with the sorting and hands hardly ever touch the berries.
Bill pours the freshly picked blueberries into the machine. The first sort allows the berries to drop to the orange conveyor and the sticks and larger bits to shuffle off to a bin. The next sort has a sticky conveyor that pulls the heavier bits like small rocks, clumps of berries, and mushed berries – those move off to the side and into a bin that gets another round of sorting and then is made into jam while the good berries bounce or roll onto the third conveyor. The third sort comes by hand to pick out any other foreign items before the berries fall into a box ready for consumption.
When I got home and took a few, because who can resist fresh berries, and could not stop eating them. I’m actually surprised I didn’t choke I was eating them so fast. When my kids came out into the kitchen and asked to have some of course I said yes…..it’s not like I could eat a whole 10 pound box myself….in one sitting. 🙂
Now to start planning all the wonderful things I’m going to make with 15 pounds (5 pounds I’m giving to my mother) of these delicious berries! We’ve already decided a fresh blueberry pie is in order for this week and of course I’ll freeze some for winter (for muffins, pancakes, smoothies etc). Also on the ‘we could make’ list is blueberry lemon bread, blueberry vanilla jam, blueberry sauce to go on my favorite cake (I’ll be posting this one soon!), my grandmother’s blueberry crumble, and of course some berries to add to anything from granola to yogurt to nothing at all. What is your favorite blueberry recipe?