30 June 2012

Saturdays In the Garden: Blackberries Aplenty & Lemon-Berry Pudding Cake




Before preserving anything, I consider how 
I'll be using it.  Blackberries, for instance.
I freeze some whole for smoothies and 
cobbler/kuchen but our favorite use for blackberries 
is Lemon-Berry Pudding Cakes, a recipe I found
years ago in Martha Stewart Living.  When using our
own blackberries (store-bought lack the flavor),
this is the perfect mixture of a sweet and tart pudding
under a light and fluffy lemon cake.

(Martha Stewart)

For this recipe, the blackberries will need to be 
sweetened, puree'd and run through a sieve 
to remove the seeds. 
To save time and dishes, I make a large batch to
freeze in small jars each with just the amount 
needed for one recipe of the dessert.
I now have enough for 6 batches in our freezer;
I make it liberally during the summer while the berries 
are fresh so this amount should be perfect for the
rest of the year.
To get the full health benefits of all of our produce,
I always cook with as much of it in season as I can.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle Book Cover
(Fyi, book recommendation:  Animal, Vegetable, Miracle; one family's story 
of doing their best to live off the land and resources open to them.
I really enjoyed this, and also found it a bit of an eye-opener!)


I also have 4 pints made up for yogurt
and ice cream--and I have no idea how "blackberry
ice cream" is going to turn out but soon...!

This year was to be our biggest blackberry crop.
 Here they are still green but very lush and loaded!


Below, about a month later--and they're getting burnt!


A close-up shows it better.
Not a lot one can do to fight the 105' to 108' temps.
(with the heat index even higher)
Next week looks to be a little lower--still around 100'.



Sad, sad, sad.
Still, we have enjoyed them so far and, frankly,
as much work as there is to do, I don't mind
God telling me to back off.  In fact, I 
generally need and appreciate it.
I think I have several gallons in the freezer and
we're still picking about a quart a day for now
which is perfect for those Lemon Berry Pudding Cakes!
If you have access to fresh/local blackberries, 
give these a try--it only takes a handful.
Make sure to top them with sweetened, fresh 
whipped cream (none of that fake stuff!) especially
if your berries might be a bit green/tart.


(If you follow the link, you should get more pictures--I couldn't get them to pull up.)
  • 1 pint blackberries
  • 1/2 cup (about 3 lemons) plus 1 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup plus 3 T sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for ramekins
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 6 T flour, sifted
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Hot water for pan

350 degrees. Process 2 1/2 ounces blackberries (12 to 15 berries), 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons sugar in a food processor or blender until smooth. Pass mixture through a fine sieve into a small bowl; discard solids. Set sauce aside.

Butter inner top inch of six 6-ounce ramekins; set aside. Whisk together egg yolks and 3/4 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Whisk in flour and milk in two batches each, beginning with the flour. Whisk in remaining 1/2 cup lemon juice, the salt, and the melted butter, and set aside.
Beat egg whites on medium-high speed until very frothy, about 1 1/2 minutes. With mixer running, add remaining 1/4 cup sugar in a slow, steady stream; beat until whites hold stiff (but not dry) peaks, about 2 minutes. Whisk half the whites into reserved lemon mixture until combined; gently fold in remaining whites with a rubber spatula.

Place the ramekins in a high-sided roasting pan or baking dish, and divide the batter among ramekins, filling each almost to the top. Spoon a few drops of berry sauce onto cakes, and use a toothpick or skewer to swirl sauce into batter. Transfer to oven; pour boiling water into pan, a bit more than halfway up sides of ramekins.

Bake until cakes are set and the tops are just starting to turn golden, 35 to 40 mins.
With tongs, transfer the ramekins to a wire rack; cool 15 minutes.


3 comments:

Katy Cameron said...

I love fresh berries, but alas, I have to make do with the supermarket ones (at least they're from Scotland)

andrea@townandprairie said...

I would *love* several gallons of berries in MY freezer! Lucky you! Our berry bushes that we planted last year are still very tiny and my mother's succumbed to the raspberry cane borer :(

the canned quilter said...

You know after decades of gardening when I have a bumper crop I always can most of it because I know that it may be several years before I have another one. So when A crop fails or mother nature just doesn't cooperate I can sit back and say "that's okay" because I still have some in the freezer from the year before. It is so nice to not be frantic as there always seems more than plenty and I can't tell you the last time my pantry or either freezer was empty: )

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