August is National Blueberry Month. The harvest is full, the prices are at the year’s low, and any food lover should relish the opportunity to eat lots of them.
And cook with them. Beyond the all-American blueberry pie, you can make:
Blueberry ice cream. Photo and recipe courtesy Driscoll’s berries.
HOW TO BUY FRESH BLUEBERRIES
Fresh blueberries should be firm and dry (no leakage or juice stains on the bottom of the container), with a smooth skin covered with a silvery white bloom. The color should be deep purple-blue to blue-black. Reddish blueberries aren’t ripe and won’t ripen once they are picked, but you can use them when cooking with added sugar.
Refrigerate fresh blueberries, either in their original plastic pack or in a covered bowl or container. Before using, wash the berries, removing any stems, leaves and smashed fruit, plus berries that look soft, shriveled or dots of white mold.
Ingredients For 1 Quart
1. COMBINE the blueberries, sugar and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over moderate heat. Mash the softened blueberries and stir with a fork. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.
2. PURÉE the berry mixture and milk in a blender or food processor. When smooth, stir in the cream. Press the purée through a sieve into a bowl. Press on the solids with back of a spoon to extract the remaining juices.
3. COVER and chill the mixture at least 2 hours, or until cold. You can make the recipe up to this step, up to 1 day in advance.
4. PROCESS the cold mixture in an ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer it to an airtight container and place in the freezer to harden.