RALEIGH, N.C. — With students out of school and families cooking more meals at home than usual, here are five kid-friendly blueberry recipes just in time for the start of N.C. bluberry season, which runs mid-May through mid-July.
For breakfast, try Blueberry Almond Overnight Oatmeal. The simple recipe includes many ingredients already in your pantry, takes just five minutes to prep and is ready to eat when the kids wake up. Sweet Potato Toasts with Blueberries and Tahini Sauce is a nutrient-packed lunch that incorporates blueberries with another great N.C. crop – sweet potatoes. For dinner, the recipe for Savory Blueberry Pizza offers a new way to add variety to a make-your-own pizza night. Those looking for easy snacks that can be made with their children will enjoy Blueberry Creamsicles and Blueberry Sparklers.
Following are the full recipes provided by the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council, a trade organization supporting blueberry growers nationwide:
BLUEBERRY ALMOND OVERNIGHT OATS
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 2 tablespoons almond butter
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup frozen blueberries, divided
- 1 tablespoon toasted sliced almonds
In a mason jar, combine oats, almond milk, almond butter, vanilla and cinnamon. Stir in ½ cup blueberries. Top with remaining ½ cup blueberries and sliced almonds. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. Stir before serving.
SWEET POTATO TOASTS WITH BLUEBERRIES AND TAHINI SAUCE
- 1 large sweet potato, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch thick slices
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons tahini paste
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
- 4 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds
Preheat oven to 425 F. Toss sweet potatoes in oil and salt. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Whisk together tahini paste, maple syrup and water until smooth. Toss blueberries with tahini sauce. Spoon mixture onto sweet potato toasts. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
SAVORY BLUEBERRY PIZZA
- 1 pound pizza dough
- 1-1/2 cups grated mozzarella cheese, divided
- 1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
- 4 ounces diced pancetta (can also use bacon or ham if pancetta is not available), cooked and drained
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
- Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 450 F. Lightly flour a work surface. Pat and stretch dough into a 10 x 14-inch oval, and place on a large baking sheet. With a fork, pierce dough in several places. Leaving a 1-inch border, sprinkle dough with half the mozzarella, the gorgonzola, pancetta and red onion. Bake until crust is golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes. Sprinkle blueberries and remaining mozzarella over pizza. Bake until cheese is melted and crust is golden brown, about 2 minutes longer. Remove from oven, and top with basil and pepper.
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk (from a carton)
- 3 tablespoon coconut cream
- 1/4 teaspoon grated lime zest
Over medium heat in a small saucepan, combine blueberries, water and maple syrup. Lightly crush blueberries with the back of your spoon and cook until liquid is syrupy and thick.Remove from heat. Cool to room temperature. In a small bowl, whisk together coconut milk, coconut cream and grated lime zest. Fill popsicle molds a little over half full of coconut milk mixture. Spoon in blueberry mixture to each popsicle – about 1-2 tablespoons per popsicle. Place mold in freezer for 1 hour.Remove molds and add popsicle sticks into each popsicle.Place molds back in the freezer for at least another 4 hours until ice pops are solid.
- 1 cup large fresh blueberries
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons multi-color candy sprinkles
- Ten 8-inch bamboo skewers
On each skewer, spear 8 blueberries. In a perfectly dry microwavable cup, stir chocolate chips and oil. Microwave on medium power 30 seconds and stir. Microwave 20-30 seconds longer and stir until the chocolate is smooth. Transfer melted chocolate to a resealable plastic bag. Snip a very small corner off the bottom of the bag. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the skewered blueberries and immediately roll lightly in sprinkles.
North Carolina is the seventh-largest producer of blueberries in the nation. Growers indicate the forecast for mid- and late-season varieties looks good. For shoppers, this means N.C. blueberries will be available through July at grocery stores, farmers markets and roadside stands. The department encourages consumers to look for the Got To Be NC label wherever they shop or eat to support local farmers. For more information about local products and other blueberry recipe ideas, go to www.gottobenc.com.
–Dexter Hill, NCDA&CS