Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Blueberry Extravaganza!! - Part 3

Blueberry Muffins

As in my previous post, while making my blueberry dessert, I got tempted to make another blueberry-related dream of mine come true. That was, taking photos of blueberry scones or muffins sitting on my favorite tea cloth WITH some berries in a small woven basket in the background and some berries scattered on the cloth, maybe with some white wild flowers or something. Well, I already had that setting on my table right in front of me. All I needed was scones or muffins...

Of course I didn't have enough time for both scones and muffins, so I chose muffins.

Now let me share with you the result of my crazy morning ...

OH it's been a long time since I did something like this last time...   It really felt like, "Obachan IS back!!" :D

These weren't just waste of time, though. My parents do not like Western pastries, but they did love my blueberry-custard cream dessert when I shared it with them.
So, in addition to satisfying my desire, I did do something good to my parents, too. Right? ;)

Blueberry Extravaganza!! - Part 1 and 2


Two days ago, I found a big bowlful of blueberries on the kitchen table. Dad said that one of our relatives bought so many of them, for some reason, that she didn't know what to do. So she kindly came to our house to give us some.
OH! So many blueberries!!

Now, long term readers of my foodblog may remember that I used to grow a blueberry bush in a planter when I was living alone in an apartment. It yielded only a handful of berries, but I was really making a big deal out of it. Remember?

And it was my dream to one day get so many fresh, ripe blueberries, smother them with something like custard cream and eat them from a big bowl with a big spoon. I experienced that luxury at a Thanksgiving dinner or something at my friend's house in America almost twenty years ago. And it became a wonderful memory that will last a lifetime. OK, OK. You can laugh at me. But food-related memories can be really deep seated for anyone, you know?

Anyway,this could be my once-in-my-lifetime opportunity to make that dream come true! Actually, I thought, "Mmm.... If I use relatively small amount for one purpose, I could make a couple more blueberry-related dreams come true."

One of the dreams was making fresh blueberry pancakes, stacking them up and drizzling them with maple syrup with a few fresh blueberries on top. So that became Part 1 of my blueberry project, which I went for yesterday. Look at my breakfast yesterday morning! :D
Part 1. Blueberry Pancakes

And last night, I made something similar to custard cream as a step to my lifetime dream. LOL Then this morning, instead of just eating it from a bowl, I expanded the project a little bit. So, Part 2 of my project was taking some photos of my blueberry-custard cream dessert...

 Part 2. Blueberry Custard Cream Dessert

... and then, of course, eating it! :D

The dessert was not exactly the same as what I had in America decades ago. But it was close enough. Quite satisfactory. Really! :D

But I couldn't stop there... I ended up adding Part 3 to this project, which I will share in my next post. :)
Yeah, the baking fairy in me went hyper!! LOL

Monday, July 25, 2016

There Still Is a Hope...

Green Ume Plums and Rock Sugar (Jun 3rd, 2016)

Guys, I have a confession.
1. I forgot to post about my ume plum juice project 2016 when I started it in June.
2. It was NOT a total failure -- at least -- but not a great success, either.

So, let me give you more details.

On June 3rd, I sterilized the jars and lids in boiling water for more than 10 minutes. I had kept the green ume plums in the freezer overnight. I bought a new bag of rock sugar instead of using the leftover from the year before. So, in a nutshell, I WAS ALL READY for a success. I pictured myself having a sip of nice, refreshing ume juice on a hot and humid day at the end of July.

But, oh well. It was already quite hot in early July, and I was lazy to put them in the fridge. Actually I thought about it but reluctant to do so because the rock sugar was not melted completely then. And when I took a look at the jars four days ago, my ume juice was covered with white foam and probably white mold. AHHHHHHHH!! Fermentation! Oh NO!

The good thing is that, thanks to several kind bloggers, now I know how to save the juice when this happens. According to their blogs, if you remove the plums and the foam and cook the juice (syrup?) at about 70 degrees C for about 10 minutes, it will be still drinkable, UNLESS it developed green or brown mold.

So, that's what I did yesterday.

Ume Plum Juice -- or Syrup, Being Heated

After heating it for more than 10 minutes, I cooled it, poured it in two bottles and put them in the fridge.

The taste? No, I haven't tasted it yet. I'll probably give it a try in a few days, and I'm not too optimistic about the taste, to be honest.  With the mold and being heated like this, the real refreshing ume flavor must be lost. I'm just happy that I didn't waste 1 kg of ume plums and 1 kg of rock sugar. That's about it.
Oh well.  ;P


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