Can I just say how much I miss you? This has been one crazy summer. Crazy in a good way, but super busy. I've had very little time for blogging, or even cooking for that matter. Last night Amanda and I made a panzanella salad, and that was the most involved dinner I've made in two months. Toasted bread and tomatoes, people. That's how insane my summer has been…that toasted bread and tomatoes equals serious cooking.
Amidst all the hullabaloo, I found one afternoon to enjoy the sun, pick blueberries, and make blueberry dumplings. Thank goodness days like that still find their way into my schedule, to keep me sane. Amanda, our friend Cindy, and I hit up a you-pick berry farm, and filled our buckets with ripe, sweet blueberries, and even a few blackberries. And it was even sunny… I mean, real summer weather. I couldn't have asked for a better day to unwind.
Afterward, we made blueberry dumplings–based on the gooey, fruity dumplings my Grandma Carol always made when we stayed with her for two weeks every summer. The dumplings are similar to a cobbler, but super quick, and fun to eat. Instead plopping biscuity dough on top of berries and baking, you drop spoonfuls of dumpling dough into simmering berries on the stovetop. Once they've cooked through, you spoon the whole mess into a bowl, and top it with vanilla ice cream, and maybe even a few fresh berries. Then the ice cream starts to melt, and you have a bowl of sweet, creamy, gooey, chewy deliciousness that you won't be able to stop eating.
No matter how hectic life gets, there's always time for dessert.
2 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Pinch of cinnamon
Dash of fresh ground nutmeg
4 tablespoons shortening
¾-1 cup milk
3 cups berries
1 cup water
1tsp lemon juice
1 cups sugar
For dumplings, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Cut in the shortening until combined and pea-like in texture. Slowly add milk, and stir with a fork until dough just holds together.
Meanwhile, in a large pot, bring berries, water, vanilla, lemon juice, and sugar to steady boil over medium heat.
Using a large spoon, spoon in the dumplings, don’t be fancy or worry about getting them round or perfect. Gently stir, and cook for 5-10 minutes until dumplings are cooked through. Be careful to not let mixture stick to the bottom and burn.
Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. And a smile.