Blueberries are one of the healthiest foods you can eat. Nutritionists often categorize them as superfoods! I have blueberries in my smoothies a couple times a week, so I was pretty stoked to find Black River Organics, a Cleveland-area farm with pick-your-own, organic blueberries.
If you decide to head out to Black River Organics yourself, make sure you check their facebook page for the location of the fields on Peck Wadsworth Road. (I made the mistake of going to the farmhouse first!) It was my first time picking blueberries, but I didn’t even ask the farmer for any advice. I seized my bucket and marched my garden-booted self straight out into the field.
The weather was perfectly glorious, with bright blue skies and a light breeze. As the sun set behind the nearby woods, purple martins dipped down to eat bugs and berries off the plants.
At first, I came upon bushes that weren’t quite offering the yield I had hoped — some had already been picked by other pickers, and some were full of berries that hadn’t quite ripened yet. I’d just read somewhere that the size of the berry had nothing to do with its ripeness, but that you should select berries of that rich blue color, as opposed to the still-ripening purple-y ones. And you want ’em plump! Once they start to deflate, they’re past their peak.
After the first half an hour or so of finding berries that pleased me only here and there as individuals, I came upon a row of bushes that hadn’t yet been picked from. I realized then what people must mean when they say they’re having “a field day.” So many berries were dangling in bunches from those plants, I couldn’t pick fast enough! (And, you know, I was in a field. Get it? Field day.)
In about an hour and a half, I picked 5 pounds of blueberries. I felt very accomplished, and went home, rinsed them off, put them into one-cup bags and placed them in the freezer for future smoothie usage.
The recipe I use is a variation on Dr. Lipman’s breakfast whey smoothie recipe from Gwyneth Paltrow’s blog Goop. I omit the alkalizing greens and replace the lime with lemon, for taste. Oh, and I add chia seeds.
I’m also going to try this recipe for coconut flour blueberry muffins from Elana’s Pantry. Yum.
Happy summer, everyone! Have any blueberry recipes you’d like to share?