We planned our picking time perfectly. We left Bloomington at 7am and we finished picking around 9am. As we started our drive home the skies opened up and it poured all the way home. We arrived home untouched by the rain with a bountiful of berries.
Here's Steph picking the berries and as you can see by what she's wearing, it was a very cool and overcast morning something else that was to our advantage.I picked 10 pounds of blueberries and found it hard not to eat them by the handfuls. However, I did find some other uses for them as well.
I made two fruit tarts to bring to a 4th of July cookout that we were invited to. Also on the tart were freshly picked black raspberries that I bought at the farmer's market.
I also made some blueberry jam. The recipe I used, calls for 4 cups of crushed berries, 4 cups of sugar, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, and a box of fruit pectin.
First you mix the crushed berries with the lemon juice and pectin, and then bring to boil over high heat. Once the mixture comes to a rapid boil you add the sugar all at once and then bring to a boil again. Once it comes to a rapid boil for the second time, you boil it for one minute (which can get sort of messy) and remove from heat. Stir with a metal spoon and remove any foam.The jam then gets poured into hot jars that you have previously sterilized by boiling. You need to wipe the rims clean and then top with lids and rings that have been sitting in hot water. The jars then get turned upside down for five minutes before turning them back over. As they cool you will hear the seals popping. This lets you know that jam making was a success, and your jars are sealed and can be stored on a shelf up to one year.My last use for the blueberries went into a blueberry pie for Keith. I'm not a big pie fan but blueberry pie is Keith's favorite. I used a recipe from Martha Stewarts Baking Handbook, and I think it turned out really well. Although, Keith will have to be the "true" judge as he will actually eat a piece. The pie even had a 4th of July theme with the cutout stars on top.