Blueberries are one of my kid’s favorite foods; they can polish of a pint at one sitting. So, I planted a couple of bushes in our front yard, but none of the blueberries ever make it into the house. The kids just stand around feasting on them as they come and go from our home. I never get to bake anything with our blueberries and I rarely get to taste them myself.
Recently my family went blueberry picking on a larger scale, so I would have some blueberries to eat. In Bellevue, a suburb of Seattle, the Park District maintains a couple organic blueberry farms. You can pick as much as you want for $1.50/lb., a great deal for our family. I worked as hard as possible to fill my bucket before the kids’ attention spans and bellies were full (note their buckets were not full). I was motivated to fill my freezer and to have some to bake with. My husband and I picked over 13 pounds of blueberries. My five-year old picked a 1/2 pound. The 2-year-old picked 4 berries — total. It was a bit like the book Blueberries for Sal.
My husband insisted on baking Kristen’s Upside Down Blueberry Muffins first – amazingly yummy. Then I found this unique recipe for Blueberry Breakfast Cornbread in Cook’s Illustrated. I love it because it combined the fresh blueberries as well as fresh corn, which is in season now too.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup fresh corn kernels or frozen, thawed
1 cup buttermilk
1/ cup maple syrup
2 large eggs
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup of fresh blueberries (or frozen)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and hat oven to 400°. Spray an 8-inch cast-iron pan or an 8-inch glass pyrex dish with vegetable oil spray. Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl until combined; set aside.
2. In a food processor or blender, process brown sugar, corn, buttermilk and syrup until combined, 5 seconds. Add eggs and process until combined (kernels will remain lumpy), about 5 seconds longer.
3. Melt butter in a small bowl, cool and then add blueberries.
3. Using a rubber spatula, make a well in the center of the dry ingredients; pour wet ingredients into well. Begin folding dry ingredients into we, giving the mixture only a few turns to barely combine. Add blueberries and butter and continue folding until dry ingredients are just moistened. Pour batter into prepared baking dish and smooth surface with rubber spatula. Sprinkle sugar over batter.
4. Bake until cornbread is deep golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes. Let cool on wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto wire rack and turn right side up and let cool until warm, about 10 minutes longer, and serve. Serve with butter.