How to Freeze Berries!

Ingredients and Equipment fresh berries – any quantity Vacuum food sealer or “zip lock” type freezer bags (the freezer bag version is heavier and protects better against freezer burn.) a pan or tray that will fit in your freezer a strainer or colander Instructions Step 1 – Get your berries Start with the freshest berries you can get. Look for plump, full berries with a good color. I’ve used blueberries as an example, but these directions would equally well for any other berry (blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, etc.) See the picking tips page for other berries. Step 2 – Drain the berries Use a large sieve or colander to remove as much water as possible. I usually let them sit for about 10 minutes in the colander. NOTE about blueberries: Do not wash blueberries and related berries (saskatoons). According to University of Georgia and Clemson University extension services, washing these berries results in a tougher skinned product. (Frankly, I’ve never noticed a difference, but I use frozen blueberries in cooked pies, anyway). The university extension services referred to above say to wash the berries after you remove them from the freezer to use. This only applies to blueberries and saskatoons. Step 3 – Spread the berries in a pan There are two ways of doing this. If you have space in your freezer, spread the berries out in a large oven pan with a lip or ridge. Put enough on to make 1 layer. This way they will freeze quickly and not be frozen together in a lump, so later you can remove only what you need without thawing the rest. If your freezer isn’t big enough to spread out as above, just drain as much of the water as you can (if you washed them), then put them into whatever container will...

Blueberry Pie Recipe

Ingredients and Equipment (per 9 inch deep dish pie)  3 to 4 cups Blueberries – fresh or frozen (without syrup)  One 9 inch deep-dish Pie Plate – (grocery stores sell both disposable pie pans and glass pans. Get the deep type!  7 Tablespoons corn starch (for those of you in the British Isles, you know it as “corn flour”). You may also use an equivalent amount of flaked tapioca instead (the tapioca balls don’t dissolve)  3 Tablespoons water (or grape juice)  2 Tablespoons lemon juice  One 9 inch pie crust OR a graham cracker pie crust  Seasonings: 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon allspice  Sweetener: o 2/3 cup granulated (ordinary table) Sugar OR o 1/3 cup sugar and 1/3 cup Splenda (Splenda works in pie recipes, but not by itself. The pie turns out heavy and with much less flavor). And now, choose the topping you prefer:  Crumb topping: o 1/4 cup sugar (OR 1/8 cup sugar and 1/8 cup Splenda) o 1/2 cup flour o 1/4 cup butter or margarine  Dough topping: See the pie crust recipe and double it to make extra to roll out as a topping to cover the pie. Step 1 – Make the pie crust Never made a crust, either? Fear not, they are really simple. Click the link for instructions about making a flour pie crust. (http://www.pickyourown.org/piecrust.php ) Now is also a good time to get the oven preheating to 375 F. Step 2- Wash the blueberries Just rinse them in a colander or sieve in cold water, no soap. Pick out and remove any bits of stems, leaves...

Homemade Blueberry Jam Recipe

Ingredients Blueberries – 10 cups, or 2.25 liters, about 3.5 lbs, almost 1.75 kg) preferably fresh, but frozen (without syrup works, too) Lemon juice – either fresh squeezed or bottled. 1/4 cup. Water – 1/2 cup Sugar – See step 6.  My favorite approach is to use the no-sugar needed pectin, but still add about 4.5 cups of dry, granulated (table) sugar. It is possible to make low-sugar,  fruit juice-sweetened, or Stevia (or if you prefer, Splenda)-sweetened blueberry jam; I’ll point out the differences below. Pectin (it’s a natural product, made from apples and available at grocery stores (season – spring through late summer) and local “big box” stores. It usually goes for about $2.00 to $2.50 per box. You’ll get best results with no-sugar needed pectin, whether you choose to add sugar or not! See here for more information about how to choose the type of pectin to use. Equipment Jar funnel ($2 at Target, other big box stores, and often grocery stores; and available online – see this page) or order it as part of the kit with the jar grabber. Jar grabber (to pick up the hot jars)- Big box stores and grocery stores sometimes carry them; and it is available online – see this page. It’s a tremendously useful to put jars in the canner and take the hot jars out (without scalding yourself!). The kit sold below has everything you need, and at a pretty good price: At least 1 large pot; I prefer 16 to 20 quart Teflon lined pots for easy cleanup. Large spoons and ladles 1 Canner (a huge pot to sanitize the jars after filling (about $30 to $35...