Tag Archive for bc blueberries

Blueberry Mojitos

Well, it took it long enough, but summer finally got here. After a rainy spring and a cool June, August is finally starting to feel like the real deal.

The weather presents a unique challenge in the time of COVID. When it’s super rainy, it’s hard to get out. When it’s super hot, the things that used to be our respite–movie theatres, shopping malls–don’t feel safe. So cooling down can be a challenge.

Here in Vancouver, the outdoor pools have opened, with safety protocols, of course. You have to book your spot in advance, you have a specific time frame to visit the pool, and you’re only allowed to stay for 90 minutes. It’s a far cry from previous years where we’d basically go in the morning and stay all day. The few times we have been, however, have been really nice. Almost normal.

I’m drinking a lot of iced coffees and iced teas… and I’m grateful that my apartment always seems to have a breeze, so it’s fairly cool.

Blueberry Mojito

The mojito is the perfect summer drink for cooling yourself down. It has a combination of ingredients, but there’s always a base of lime and mint. You can make it with lots of different ingredients. I like a version done with cucumber, for even more cooling properties.

But when I recently came into a bounty of fresh, local blueberries, I knew I needed Blueberry Mojitos in my life.

What makes this one a bit more special is that it uses blueberries in two ways: first off, you muddle the fresh blueberries with the mint and lime, to infuse the flavour in that way. But after, you “float” (I use quotation marks there because the juice is actually heavy, and sinks to the bottom) blueberry juice into the finished mojito to create a really beautiful ombre effect.

All-in-all, it makes for a pretty sexy, summer-sipping, heat-beating patio drink.

Blueberry Mojitos

Ingredients:

  • 1-1½ oz rum (white works best, colour-wise, but really any will do)
  • 6-8 fresh blueberries
  • 6-8 mint leaves
  • 1/2 lime, cut in quarters
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • 1/2 oz blueberry juice (I used Bremners)
  • soda water
  • ice

Method:

  1. In your cocktail shaker, place the mint leaves, blueberries and limes. Muddle together. Add the simple syrup and give it another bash.
  2. Add the rum and a handful of ice, and shake well until the outside of the cocktail shaker is frosted.
  3. Place a few extra ice cubes in a pretty glass, and strain the mojito into it.
  4. Carefully, pouring down the inside of the glass over a spoon, pour the blueberry juice. Top with sparkling water, garnish with a sprig of mint and a wheel of lime and enjoy.

Blueberry Lemon Bars {Vegan}

Vegan Blueberry Lemon Bars

Well, it’s officially summer here in Vancouver, though the weather seems to be a bit confused as to what season it is. However, July 15 is Blueberry Day, so hence today’s recipe.

To add to the long list of why 2020 sucks, our summer has been pretty cold and rainy so far. OH! And! Apparently it’s also a banner year for mosquitoes. So yeah. Good times.

What this situation calls for is baked goods, because, let’s face it, there’s no situation that cannot be improved by the application of cake.Lemon Blueberry Bars

Given that none of us can venture too far this summer, Michael and I are making plans to explore our “backyard,” by which I mean, our province. We recently headed out to Fort Langley last week to explore.

If you’ve never been to Fort Langley, it’s pretty awesome. It has such charm, and some really lovely places to browse. In addition to the historical Fort (which is only half open, sadly), the town itself has some pretty interesting things to see, including Blacksmith Bakery, which I highly recommend.

BC Blueberries

On our way home, we hit up a couple of berry farms, and came home with some locally-grown berry booty; strawberries, raspberries and blueberries.

Pie ensued. Also a lemon tart with garnished with glazed fresh berries.

Lemon Tart

But the blueberries… what to do with them?

Lemon and blueberries make good friends, so I decided to pair the two. This is a really simple recipe that I think turned out quite elegant and lovely.

Blueberry Lemon Bars Vegan

Blueberry Lemon Shortbread Bars {Vegan}

Ingredients for the crust:

  • 1 cup vegan butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
  • zest of one lemon
  • ½ teaspoon salt

ingredients for the filling:

  • 1 ½ cups blueberries
  • ¼ cup water
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon flour or cornstarch

Method

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, or using a hand-held mixer in a large bowl, cream together the vegan butter and the sugar. Mix well together until they are light and creamy. Add the vanilla and lemon zest and mix to combine. Add in the flour in three batches, mixing in between each until incorporated. Take a little more than half of the mixture and press it into a 8″x8″ greased (or parchment-lined) square pan. Set aside while you make the filling.
  2. In a medium-sized pot, place the water, blueberries, half the lemon juice and sugar. Bring up to a boil and then turn down the heat and allow to simmer for about 5 minutes. Us a potato masher to squish up the blueberries a little. Place the flour or cornstarch in a small mason jar with the remaining lemon juice and shake well to combine. Add the slurry to your blueberry mixture, bring it back up to the boil and allow to cook down for an additional 5 minutes, until thickened.
  3. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Pour the blueberry compote over the shortbread layer in your pan. Then break the remaining shortbread up into chunks with your hands and scatter it over the blueberry mixture. You want there to be peeks of blueberries through the crust. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 20-30 minutes, until the top is golden and the blueberries are bubbly. Cool and cut into squares to serve.
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