One of my new neighbours was walking by a few weeks ago on her way to buy sugar at the local grocery store. She was making blueberry jam since with the berries she had just picked that morning. I instantly began to salivate thinking of fresh, local berries, and blueberry pie.
I asked her directions to the farm and the next day we invited some friends and family to join us as we packed up the kids and headed out with our baskets. It was to Northfield Blueberries (map), a beautiful farm in Scotland, Ontario. The bushes were packed with fruit, and bringing along some competitive young pickers filled our baskets (and bellies) rather quickly.
We left with 27 pounds of blueberries. After eating more than we should have, we needed to figure out what to do with them. The first idea, and probably the best idea was to make pie! And my theory is, if you are making pie on one of the hottest days of summer, you might as well fill that oven with as many pies as possible.
We didn't just make blueberry pie. The girls who helped us pick them pitched in to help us make blueberry, blueberry-blackberry and pumpkin pies.
I may have secretly been more excited to make a butter crust with my last half pound of Stirling, extra-fat, European Style Butter that I had been saving, hidden in the back of the freezer for such an occasion.
The blueberry pie was the lucky one to be wrapped in the Stirling butter pie crust. It was delicious. Regular butter had to do for the rest of the crusts. This is the recipe that I use for the pastry. We're eventually going to be using the lard from our pig to make the best crusts ever, but we're not terribly comfortable using the standard factory-farmed pig lard from the grocery store, which is also usually hydrogenated.
The pumpkin pie was made with pumpkin puree frozen from last summer's garden, using the same old tried-tested and true recipe. We already have some pretty sizable pumpkins in the garden and before long we will be preserving them, so we're happy to use up last years' puree.
The blueberry pies weren't made with the same tiny wild blueberries that I grew up on from northern Ontario, but picking them ourselves and having them so fresh made them taste nearly as good. They were delicious and loaded with anti-oxidants and we certainly got our fill, made some pie and froze a pile to use on waffles, in muffins and pies, or even just eat straight out of the freezer.
If you are in our area, Blueberries should be on into mid-August, so go and get your pick on. And who knows, you'll probably run into us there getting another fill of them fresh before the season is out.