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Monday, June 28, 2010

Wild About Blueberries

I was reading Lynne Goldman's piece on blueberries in Bucks County Taste today.  It is indeed time to start seeing fresh blueberries in the markets.  Yum.  Tasty, versatile and really good for you.  Just want you want in food.

Lynne talks about putting some of them in the freezer for a treat during the winter months.  Always a good idea with fresh fruit.  The seasons are so short, you have to try to keep some for later--if you can avoid eating all of them first.  Jake loves eating frozen blueberries--it's like eating flavored ice!  It makes a real mess in his mouth, too. 

Of course, being the Maine fanatics that we are, blueberries always make us think of Maine.  If you've never had wild blueberries from Maine, you are missing out.  These tiny berries--much smaller than the ones you find around here--are incredibly sweet.  Sort of the essence of what blueberries should taste like.

And, if you visit during the right time of year (mid- to late-summer and even into September depending on the weather), they're everywhere.  In fact, wild blueberries cover an estimated 60,000 acres in the state.  They were first commercially harvested in 1840 and today, wild blueberry production brings $250 million dollars to Maine's economy.  You can find frozen wild blueberries in most supermarkets (Wyman's is probably the most common brand).
We usually go Down East in September, but a couple of years ago, we went in July and these pictures are from a hike up a mountain in Acadia National Park.  We took a break at the summit to drink some water and eat some berries.  A nice refreshing way to catch our breath.

So enjoy the blueberries grown locally while they last.  And if you can someday, drive north and eat some local berries right off the bushes.

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