Blueberry Dumplings A.K.A Pierogi z Jagodami

Blueberry dumplings A.K.A. Pierogi z JagodamiPierogi are a traditional Polish meal. Usually they would be filled with potatoes and cheese, sauerkraut or minced meat but come summer time when fresh fruits are in abundance we like to make a sweet version and stuff them with which ever fruits we have… blueberries being my favourite choice.

The recipe below will make around 50 dumplings, it might sound like a lot but believe me once you actually start eating… it really isn’t all that many.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

  • 1/2kg flour
  • ~250ml warm water
  • 1tbsp melted butter
  • Pinch of salt

For the filling:

  • ~300g blueberries

For serving:

  • 250g double cream
  • Sugar; to taste

Method:

Wash and dry the blueberries; they need to be totally dry.

On a large flat surface place your flour; make a well in the middle and add the water, butter and salt. Use your hands to combine the ingredients and when it has formed knead the dough.

At first the dough will be very sticky but as you knead it will become a wonderful soft and playful dough and then you will know it is ready for rolling – you can view step by step pictures on how to make it here.

Take part of your dough and roll it flat; use a large round cookie cutter (or pint glass or a coffee mug) to cut out the round shapes.

Each round “pierogi” to be needs to be filled with around 1 teaspoon of blueberries. Make sure you pinch the end tightly so your creation doesn’t fall apart during the cooking process – again for step by step pictures on how to fill pierogi please see my Russian Style Dumplings post.

Once formed place your pierogi on a lightly floured surface until you are ready to start cooking.

You will need a large, and I really mean it… a large cooking pot, filled with water; ideally wide and not so high. Add a pinch of salt to your water and bring it to a boil.

Once the water is boiling gently place each pierogi in; just a few at the time so the water surface isn’t too crowded.

Allow them to boil for a few minutes – 2 or 3 should do the trick.

Once they swim to the top use a slotted spoon and fish them out.

Make sure that are dry before serving.

Serve with cream and sugar and enjoy a traditional Polish taste.

Blueberry dumplings – Pierogi z JagodamiHave you ever made pierogi at home?

If so, what is your favourite filling?

Homemade Blueberry Ice Lollies

My Homemade Blueberry Ice LolliesHot weather and high temperatures very often call for a cold treat being somewhere within easy reach. Yes, of course we can pop to the store and simply purchase a selection of ice-creams but what about making them from scratch?

And no, you don’t have to own an ice cream making machine to be able to make your own ice cream… well if I can call my ice lollies ice cream… I guess they are sort of icy and creamy 🙂

Anyway, lately I am experimenting with frozen desserts a little bit. I have already shared with you my papaya & orange ice lolly, which were just pure blended fruit with natural juice – a super extra healthy option… today’s blueberry lollies aren’t as forgiving but still I would dare to claim they are healthier than most shop bought ice creams.

So what will you need?

Well, ingredients wise you need:

  • 500ml pot of natural fat free yogurt
  • 400g tin of light condensed milk
  • 800g blueberries

To add to this you will need a blender, ice lollies mould and well… a freezer… surprise, surprise…

Method:

Wash and towel dry a little your berries.

Pour the yogurt and condensed milk into the blender; add blueberries and blend.

You can either blend all the berries or keep some back and add them into your finished mixture later on – I added some whole berries into our lollies but I will blend them all in the future. The whole berries help keep the ice lollies frozen for a bit longer so they aren’t defrosting in a jiffy. If that is not a problem for you as you eat quickly then you might as well skip the whole barriers part and simple wiz them all into a lovely “smoothie” ready for freezing.

Once all the fruit is blended and you have a smooth mixture, simply pour your mixture into the ice lollies moulds and then pop them into the freezer.

Allow for at least four hours of freezing time… then dig in… or lick on 😉

Homemade Blueberry Ice LolliesHomemade Blueberry Ice LollyDo you make your own ice lollies?

What are your favourite flavours or combinations?

Proper Old School Blueberry Muffins

Muffins are without doubt a delightful and tasty small cake that compliments a light lunch or even a mid meal snack to keep hunger pangs at bay. They are small, take anywhere delights and a firm favourite of many people… myself included.

But wait, something has gone terribly wrong with the whole concept of the humble muffin in my humble opinion. I find more often than not, when I make a purchase and eagerly open the packaging to sample my muffin, that all is not perfect in muffin world. I tend to find that the muffin of this high tech processed food world to be substandard to what I recall as the perfect muffin.

Maybe my memory has put on some rose tinted glasses and the muffin I crave never really existed but I believe they do. The muffin of today tends to be a super sugary and very moist ball of dough that when you eat turns into a single flavoured paste in your mouth. This defeats the purpose of eating a proper muffin. With a proper muffin you are meant to have a light fluffy cake and only when you bite into the fruit of the muffin do you get a burst of sweetness and flavour. A muffin should be a multi levelled experience, and that’s what I miss.

Until now!

I am making a stand; I am going to take control of my muffin again. I know I can do better myself and so I am going to do it and here is how…

Let us start with the most popular muffin on the market, the blueberry muffin. I consulted my range of baking books and settled on my stalwart go to book the Leiths Baking Bible. I have waxed lyrical about this range of books before and with good reason, they do it properly.

Let’s bake some proper old school blueberry muffins!

My Proper Old School Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients:

For the muffins:

  • 250g plain flour
  • 2tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1tsp of ground cinnamon
  • A pinch of salt
  • 115g of melted butter
  • 115g light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1tsp grated lemon zest
  • 140g soured cream
  • 200g of fresh blueberries

For the topping:

  • 85g plain flour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 55g of butter
  • 55g of caster sugar

Method:

Make the topping first by sifting the flour into a bowl and add the salt. Cut the butter into small cubes and add to the flour and then with only your finger tips rub the butter into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs, now stir in the sugar and pop into the fridge to chill.

Pop the oven on and set it to 190C or 375F. Line a 12 holes muffin tin with paper or silicon muffin cases and set aside for the moment.

For the muffins themselves, sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon and salt into a large mixing bowl.

In a small saucepan slowly melt the butter removing from the heat just before fully melted and allow to cool slightly for a couple of minutes. Add the lemon zest, sugar and soured cream and stir well. Add the beaten eggs slowly whilst still stirring to stop them curdling or lumping from the heat of the melted butter.

Now the most important part of the whole process, add the wet ingredients to the dry and pop in the blueberries. Remember, you are not allowed to use more than 20 folds to combine them as over stirring will cause the final muffins to be tough. Try and do it with as few folds as possible; I tend to do around 14, so the challenge is set 🙂

Now divide the mixture evenly between the 12 muffin cases.

Last thing, remove the topping from the fridge and sprinkle over the muffin mixture, I tend to find I have too much so don’t overdo it, it’s alright to have some spare.

Now bake in the middle of your preheated oven for around 20 minutes or until well risen and golden brown, you will have to adjust if you have a convection oven by lowering the target temperature by 10 degrees and reducing baking time by 5 minutes. You will just have to keep an eye on the little fellas. As a final test a wooden skewer inserted into the middle of one muffin should come out clean and dry.

Remove the muffins from the tin and allow to cool on a wire rack.

What's Baking - Proper Old School Blueberry MuffinsProper Old School Blueberry Muffins

Do you enjoy the muffins of today or do you crave the way they used to be?

What is your favourite muffin?

Yum

Foods Of The World – Sri Lanka – Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad

World Foods – Sri Lanka – Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad

By Amila Wickramarachchi from Food Corner

Who doesn’t like a refreshing salad in a hot summer day?

This Cantaloupe and Blueberry salad is a really simple and quick dessert I tried with some yogurt and honey over it. Specially during a hot summer day, having a healthy snack with some fruits is a perfect idea and melons come to my mind first. I have tried many recipes with different melon types and this is one of the easiest and quickest desserts I have ever tried!

World Foods - Sri Lanka - Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad

I used a melon baller to scoop cantaloupe, but it is not necessary. Instead use a fruit knife and cut cantaloupe into small bite size cubes of similar size. Taste of blueberries was really good with cantaloupe balls and yogurt added some rich smooth flavor to it. I used natural low fat yogurt to keep it healthier.

World Foods – Sri Lanka - Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad

Over the fruits, I added some fresh lime juice. Lime juice gave a good flavor to this salad. Once honey is drizzled over, it looked perfect and delicious. I couldn’t wait until I finish the whole bowl.

Below is the simple and quick recipe for Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad. Try this when you are in need for a snack or a dessert in a hot summer day!

Ingredients (Serves 2):

  • ½ of a Cantaloupe
  • 1 cup Blueberries
  • 1 cup Natural yogurt
  • Honey to drizzle
  • 1 tsp. Lime juice

Method:

First scoop melon with a melon baller (or cut into cubes)

In a bowl, mix cantaloupe balls together with blueberries and lime juice.

Add natural yogurt over it.

Drizzle over some honey as per taste.

Cantaloupe and blueberry dessert is ready to serve.

Mix other fruits together with cantaloupe balls for different tastes.

Enjoy!

World Foods - Sri Lanka – Cantaloupe and Blueberry Salad

About the author:
Amila Wickramarachchi is a Food Blogger who loves to share her recipes and moments of the culinary journey in her Food Blog Food Corner. Food Corner is mainly a collection of Sri Lankan recipes; however there are recipes from other lands as well as other kitchen related posts.

If you would like to know more about Sri Lankan food please visit Amila blog Food Corner or Facebook page or follow @slfoodcorner on Twitter.

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