Pardon the pun, but we’ve gone bananas for blueberries. In the March/April issue of The Saturday Evening Post, Corey Michael Dalton writes about picking these antioxidant-rich fruits in Canada as a child. His story made us crave the sweet treats, so we asked the U.S. Highbrush Blueberry Council for inventive, healthy ways to mix these berries into our diets. The result? An entire day’s worth of meals (and snacks)! Start your day with the blueberry oatmeal breakfast cake, and then give one of the salads a try. And don’t forget to try the blueberry-topped rice cake featuring ricotta or cottage cheese. It’s a perfect afternoon pick-me-up that won’t have you crashing from a sugar high.
Blueberry Oatmeal Breakfast Cake
(Makes 8 servings)
- 1-1⁄3 cups flour
- ¾ cup quick-cooking oats
- 1⁄3 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoons salt
- ¾ cup milk
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg
- 1 cup frozen blueberries*
Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease an 8-inch round baking pan. Set aside.
In medium mixing bowl combine flour, oats, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
In a 1-cup measure stir milk, oil, and egg. Pour all at once into flour mixture. Stir just until moistened (batter will be lumpy). Fold in blueberries. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake until cake is golden and pulls away from sides of pan 20 to 25 minutes.
Cool on a rack, 5 to 10 minutes.
*Blueberries should be firmly frozen when used in baking.
Salmon and Blueberry Salad with Red Onion Vinaigrette
(Makes 4 servings)
- 1 medium-sized red onion, thinly sliced in half rings
- 1/4 cup Regina red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt, divided
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1-1/2 pounds salmon fillet, cut crosswise in 4 portions
- 6 cups lettuce leaves in bite-sized pieces
- 1cup fresh blueberries
In microwaveable cup, combine onion, red wine vinegar, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper; cover loosely with plastic wrap; microwave on high power for 1 minute. Let stand, stirring occasionally, until onions turn pink, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat grill or broiler. Brush 1 tablespoon of olive oil on both sides of salmon fillets; sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Grill or broil salmon, skin side down, until just cooked through, about 6 minutes. Divide lettuce leaves among 4 dinner plates; place salmon in the center. With slotted spoon, remove onions from vinegar; scatter onions, along with blueberries, over and around the fish. Whisk remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil into vinegar mixture; drizzle vinaigrette over salmon.
Berry Blue Smoothie
(Makes 3 servings)
- 2 cups fresh or slightly thawed frozen blueberries
- 1 6-ounce container low-fat vanilla or other flavored yogurt
- 1 cup fruit juice, such as orange, pineapple or apple
- 1 tablespoon honey or sugar, more or less to taste
In the container of an electric blender, place blueberries, yogurt, juice, and honey. Whirl until smooth. Serve immediately.
Blueberry-Topped Rice Cakes
(Makes 4 servings)
- ½ cup ricotta or cottage cheese
- 2 teaspoons apricot preserves
- 4 apple-cinnamon flavored rice cakes
- 1 cup thinly-sliced fresh fruit (such as apple, pear, nectarine or peach)
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
In a small bowl, stir together ricotta and preserves.
Spoon an equal amount on each of the rice cakes almost to the edge.
Arrange fruit slices in circles, on top of the ricotta mixture.
Top each with ¼ cup of the blueberries.
Blueberry Shrimp Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
(Makes 4 servings)
- Medium-size shrimp, boiled or grilled: ¾ pound (about 20)
- Fresh blueberries: 1 cup
- Walnut pieces, toasted: ½ cup
- Edamame or green peas, cooked: ½ cup
- Mixed salad greens: 5 ounces (about 4 cups)
- Lemon Vinaigrette: (recipe follows)
- Firm white cheese, such as feta, crumbled: 2 ounces (about ½ cup)
In a large salad bowl, toss shrimp, blueberries, walnut pieces, edamame (or peas), and salad greens
Evenly divide salad onto six plates. Drizzle with Lemon Vinaigrette (below). Sprinkle cheese around edges of salads
In a small mixing bowl, whisk ¼ cup vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, ½ teaspoon sugar, 1⁄8 teaspoon salt and 1⁄8 teaspoon pepper.
Recipes/Photos Courtesy: The U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council.