We’ve been enjoying the recent harvest of beautiful local blueberries and I was recently in contact with the Wild Blueberry Association of North America, the association that represents the growers and processors of wild blueberries. I had a chance to learn so much more about what we often call “nature’s candy.” If you’re visiting your local farmer’s market, fruit stand or grocers look for the smaller blueberries that are in season. If you can’t find them fresh picked then frozen is just as good; they will give you a more intense flavour that’s perfect for smoothies and baking! Wild blueberries are naturally grown in Quebec, Maritime provinces and Maine and have been for over 10,000 years. Unlike cultivated blueberries, the wild ones are not planted. They spread naturally and slowly. What I didn’t realize, and just learned, was that not all blueberries are treated equal. According to the Wild Blueberry Association, the wild ones pack double the antioxidants found in regular blueberries!
I’ve been including wild blueberries everywhere these past few weeks. Tossing a handful in my smoothies and on top of cereal. I’ve been baking, cooking and just enjoying them on their own. I had come across this really yummy recipe created by Michael Caballo of EDULIS, one of my favourite restaurants in Toronto. I just HAD TO SHARE!
Brown Butter Crêpes with Honeyed Ricotta and Wild Blueberries
By Michael Caballo, Edulis Restaurant, Toronto, ON.
Brown Butter Crêpes
1 cup (235ml) milk
3 whole eggs
1 cup (235ml) all purpose flour
1 Tbsp (15ml) Grand Marnier
2 Tbsp (30ml) sugar
2 Tbsp (30ml) Brown Butter*
Dash pure vanilla extract
Butter, for the pan
* To make brown butter, melt butter over medium heat, swirling as it melts. When foam subsides, butter will start to turn a toasty brown. When it smells like delicious nuts, transfer to a heat proof bowl. Make a bit extra and use to garnish.
1. Combine all ingredients in a blender, and blend until silky smooth.
2. Heat a cast iron pan (or a non-stick, if you insist!) over medium heat. Brush with butter. Pour enough batter to cover the base of the pan, swirling- use a ladle
3. Cook until the edge just begins to curl. Turn and cook until just golden underneath.
4. Stack all the crêpes on a plate as you finish cooking.
1 cup (235ml) Sheep’s Milk Ricotta
Wildflower or other delicious honey, to taste
Lemon, zest and juice, to taste
1. Stir ricotta and honey together, and add lemon zest and juice.
2. Add salt to make an irresistible sweet-salty balance.
2 cups (568ml) wild blueberries, frozen
Sugar, if desired, to taste
1. Warm blueberries in a pan with a splash of cider and a sprig of lemon verbena until skins are swollen.
2. Add sugar to taste, if desired.
Need: Butter, Sugar, Lemon (zest and juice), fresh leaves of lemon verbena, basil and mint (finely julienned)
1. Take a stack of 2 or 3 crêpes and roll them up like a jelly roll. Cut into strips 2cm wide, and shake loose to make your ribbons.
2. Heat up a pan and brown a knob of butter. Toss in your crêpe ribbons, and toss with brown butter until lightly coated. Add a sprinkle of sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice.
3. Put a thick smear of honeyed ricotta on a plate. Add some wild blueberries in a few places on the plate. Put an attractive tangle of crêpe ribbons on the plate and top with a flurry of herbs, a fresh zesting of lemon, and a squeeze of juice.
*Of course, you could also just fill the crêpes with a dollop of your ricotta, roll up, and top with some wild blueberries, if you prefer!
For more information about delicious wild blueberry and other recipes visit wildblueberries.com