BLUE PEARL FARMS
9760 Randall Rd
McClellanville, SC  29458


info@bluepearlfarms.com

Blue Pearl Recipes

            

Blueberry pancakes
Weekend breakfasts growing up always included a pancake day, and all of us learned how to watch the pancakes cooking and flip them only after there were little bubbles that popped through the batter all across the pancake. With blueberries in the mix, there are little bubbles of blueberry juice around the berry edges too, so it's even easier to see but that much harder to wait for them pancakes as they crisp up in the buttered pan. This is the basic family pancake recipe, and feeds four really hungry people.

To increase the health quotient of this recipe, try mixing all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour--always smell it to be sure it's fresh as the oils can become a little rancid over time. And if you don't have buttermilk, just stir a teaspoon of lemon juice or vinegar into a cup of milk and wait for five minutes, stir again, and you'll get nearly the same effect. Or use 3/4 c. plain yogurt stirred with 1/4 c. milk.

Start by melting 4 tablespoons of butter so it can cool while you're getting the dry ingredients together

Mix together in a bowl
2 cups flour (not self-rising)
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 teaspoon salt

And you can use another bowl for all the wet ingredients to dump them in all at once, or just make a well (depression) in the dry ingredients and pour in
1 cup buttermilk
about 1/2 c. milk (and have more on hand to get the batter to the consistency you like)
2 beaten eggs
4 tablespoons melted butter

Mix together the dry and wet ingredients, and add enough milk for the batter to please you (lots for thinner, crepe-like pancakes or not so much for thicker plate-fillers).
Add a heaping cup of blueberries, or more (6-8 per 4-inch cake is a nice ratio), to taste.

Preheat your pan and swizzle a little butter over it. Unsalted butter, without any hydrogenated oils and with plenty of satisfaction quotient, is good for cooking and in moderation.

Once you can flick a splat of water onto the griddle or pan and see the little water droplets bounce a little, it's ready. Have some fun and make little shapes or just fill up the plates as they will be emptying quickly.

Blueberry compote
This is a great blueberry cooking secret. You can mix it up, and freeze it in smaller volumes or use it all up fast (our preference). It can be swirled into ice cream (store-bought and softened or homemade), heated and ladled onto pancakes, or mixed cold with whipped cream to fill an angel cake you cut in half with a bread knife, among other things. You can make it on the stove or in the microwave depending on how hot it is outside.

1 quart (4 cups) blueberries
3/4 to 1 c. sugar (to taste)
1/2 c. water
(Optional: 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel or 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon)

Heat the berries with the sugar, water and optional lemon or cinnamon until they are bubbly. Stir a few times during the process. Mash them with a potato masher or pastry cutter until you have a juicy mix of berries and squished berries.

Use with abandon.

Blueberry Cobbler from Grace of Charleston
This is an incredibly easy recipe. It is a quickbread, so once the liquid meets the dry ingredients, the rising begins to happen and you want to have the cobbler in the oven as fast as possible after they get wet.This is great with ice cream or just a little heavy cream poured on top of it.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a 1-1/2 quart casserole.

Mix together:
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Quickly stir in:
2/3 cup milk
2 cups blueberries

Place in casserole and bake 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes.


Blueberry Flag Cake
at Blue Pearl Farms
Create a fun cake that disappears whenever it is served.

Make your favorite cake recipe in a 9 x 13 pan (a plain yellow cake is good, but anything goes well with this topping).

While the cake is cooking, clean 1 pint of blueberries and 2 pints (a quart) of strawberries, and slice the strawberries in half. Thaw an 8-ounce container of frozen whipped topping (or make your own whipped cream as in the Blueberry Upsidedown Cake recipe below).

After the cake has cooled, mix half the blueberries and half the strawberries together, and sprinkle them across the top of the cake (even though it's not easy to sprinkle strawberries, you can do it). Cover the berries and cake with the whipped cream or topping.

Lay out a rectangle of blueberry 'stars' in the upper left corner of your cake, and create some stripes by laying the strawberries cut-side down (or up, if you like them better that way) in rows across the cake. This can be as precise or as child-friendly as you like...it will taste GREAT and disappear immediately.

Shanna’s Blueberry-Topped Cheesecake    

A friend of ours shared this delicious recipe with us, along with the cheesecake. It’s rich in flavor, but doesn’t sit heavily, and the blueberries glistening on top balance the creamy taste beautifully. This makes enough for an 8-inch pan. Start by preheating the oven to 325 degrees.

Beat together in a large bowl at medium speed until well blended:

2 8-ounce packages cream cheese at room temperature

½ cup sugar

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Then add ½ cup sour cream and mix well.

Beat in two eggs, one at a time, just until blended.

Fill a prepared graham cracker pie crust with the mixture and bake for 45 minutes at 325 degrees or until center is almost set. Cool completely, then cover and chill for at least four hours.

Blueberry sauce

Clean and rinse 1 pint of blueberries.

In a small pan, mix together 1/3 c. sugar, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and 1 tablespoon of cornstarch. Add 2 tablespoons of water and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, then stir over medium heat until the dry mixture is dissolved in the wet.

Add the berries, and bring to a boil; simmer for 1-2 minutes until clear and slightly thickened, stirring gently to avoid crushing the berries.

Pour over the cheesecake, and eat warm or chilled. You may also want to experiment with adding a teaspoon of vanilla to the sauce, or a little grated lemon peel to taste, before stirring in the berries.


Blueberry Bake-Off Winning Recipes!

Blueberry Salsa by Cindy Schleinkofer
This recipe is quick, easy, and completely tasty. Many of the tasters at the Blueberry Jam thought the tomato was a peach! and some wished for more jalapeno, but the judges comments indicated a great flavor for this simple salsa.You'll start by putting most of the ingredients into a bowl to pulse with an immersion blender or mash with a potato masher, then add some chunks of tomato and whole berries at the end.

1-1/2 cups ripe, sweet Blue Pearl Farms Blueberries (that's a quote, folks), separated
1/2 small jalapeno pepper, seeds and veins removed (unless you like more zip to your salsa)
juice of 1/2 lime
A medium yellow tomato, chopped
1 Tablespoon chopped cilantro
A dash of salt

Place one cup of blueberries, the jalapeno pepper, lime juice, cilantro, dash of salt, and half the chopped tomato into a bowl. Mash together or use an immersion blender to mix thoroughly.  Stir in 1/2 c. blueberries and the rest of the yellow tomato. Serve with chips and leave some for a friend to try too.

Blueberry Upside-down Cake by Rachel Held
This is a beautifully presented but simple cake that Rachel invented. The judges noted that it is not over sweet or overpowering, and it has a great after-taste. Rachel said she would be mixing nutmeg in with the butter and sugar next time she makes it...hmmmm. Sounds delicious.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Melt 1/4 c. butter and 3/4 c. brown sugar in a small pan and then pour into a 9-inch round cake pan.
Add 1 pint (2 cups) blueberries and spread evenly across the butter and sugar mixture.

Cake batter (note you'll need three bowls for the mixing)
Cream together in a small bowl and then set aside:
 1/2 c. butter (at room temperature)
 1 cup sugar
 2 egg yolks (save the whites)
 2 teaspoons vanilla

In a mixing bowl, measure and then mix well:
 1-1/2 cups flour
 2 teaspoons baking powder
 1/4 teaspoon salt

Add the creamed sugar mixture and 1/2 c. milk to the dry ingredients and beat until creamy.

In the third bowl (I like to use a small stainless steel bowl for this part), beat the 2 egg whites until they form a soft peak, and then add 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar. Beat the egg whites until stiff (they maintain a peak when you lift the beaters out of the whites).

Fold the egg whites into the cake batter gently. When well mixed, spread the batter over the blueberry topping in the cake pan.

Bake 55 to 60 minutes at 350 degrees. Set aside to cool 15 minutes. Place a serving platter over the pan, and then invert the two so that you can let the pan sit, upside down, for five minutes and then remove it.

Optional topping
1 cup heavy whipping cream, beaten until it forms a peak.
Add 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla, then beat a little more and chill. Spread onto the cake and dust with nutmeg before serving.
 
Blueberry pie
from Blue Pearl Farms
Pie is an amazing thing. You just take a mix of fruits or make a sugar-egg custard, add a handful of sugar and spice, pour into a crust and bake for an entirely new taste sensation. It takes about a pound and a half of berries (4 cups) to fill a 9-inch pie shell. This is one of my family's favorites.

Clean 4 cups of fresh berries and put them in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle them with this mixture: 3/4 to 1 c. sugar, 1/4 c. all-purpose flour, and, if you like it, the grated zest of a lemon and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Stir them together with a light hand and let them sit for 15 minutes or so while you pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees and get the pie crust ready.

You can use an uncooked pie crust or pie dough bought from the freezer section, or make one yourself (see below).

Put the fruit in the pie crust, and if you want, cut up some pea-sized pieces of butter, about 2 tablespoons all together, and put them across the top (I didn't for this one as I was using a butter crust). Then cover the pie with a lattice like this one or just a plain top and prick it all over in a nice pattern with a fork.

Bake it for about 10 minutes at 425 degrees and then turn it down to 350 degrees and bake for another 35 or 40 minutes. No leftovers predicted. Remember if you are using pyrex pie pans to lower the temperature 25 degrees.

Mom's pie crust
Pie crust is easier than you think. Start by putting a couple of ice cubes in about a cup of cold water, and be sure your butter is hard chilled. You can use a little cheat, and partly unwrap the butter, leaving it on the wrapper, and then use a long sharp knife to cut it up into little strips and then cubes, but it has to be cold to start with. Then it's easier to work into the flour. Handle the dough as little as possible for best results.

Put 2 cups of all-purpose flour, a tablespoon of sugar, and a half teaspoon of salt through a sieve or sifter.

Use 8 tablespoons (a cube) of butter, and cut half of it it into the flour mix using a couple of knives or a pastry cutter until it looks like dry grits or coarse cornmeal. Then take the rest of the butter and cut it in till the butter is about the size of small peas. Mix the dough with a fork.

Then, sprinkle the dough with about 4 tablespoons of the ice water, and mix with a fork, pulling the dough together. You might need to add another tablespoon or so, but don't add too much. You want the dough to stick together into a nice ball, but don't manipulate it too much.

Divide the dough in half before rolling it out. You can use a pastry cloth and just a little flour on my wood rolling pin and the cloth. Lift the roller, pushing the dough out from the center evenly in all directions instead of squishing it or stretching it out. That makes for a flaky crust that is light. Once you have your circle (about 11 inches in diameter), roll it loosely on the rolling pin and lay it into the pan gently. Trim off any dough that is more than about a half-inch past the rim. You can use this, lightly wet on its edges, to fill any gaps. Make sure the dough fits the pan well.

Fill it up with the filling, and then roll out another circle. You can put the top on
whole, or experiment with lattice weaving (just cut the circle into strips, and weave the strips over and under across the pie). Next, pinch the top edges or lattice ends into a nice ridge along the pie rim, and lay the side of your finger at an angle along the ridge, pinching the ridge slightly, to make that classic pie crinkle (or use a device).

Practice makes for good eating.

Blueberry cobbler
This is a great quick recipe. Start by preheating the oven to 425 degrees, and then get your fruit hot in a saucepan on top of the stove (or in a microwave-safe bowl). You can use about 3 cups of fruit for an 8x8 inch square pan, mixed with about half a cup of sugar and a tablespoon of all-purpose flour. Mix these ingredients together and heat over a moderate heat until it boils.

The next part is entirely up to you: decide if you want your dough under or over the fruit. We tried it on top last time we made it, but the way the juices soak into the dough on the bottom for later snacking is pretty delicious.

Make a quick biscuit dough:
Sift or shake thorugh a sieve 1 c all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1 tablespoon of sugar, and 2 teaspoons baking powder.

Then cut about 2-4 tablespoons of butter into the flour until the butter pieces are the size of small peas.  Use a mixing spoon to make a little depression or well in the center, and fill it with 1/2 c. milk (or cream or half and half depending on your taste).

Use a fork and mix this together quickly, but not with a heavy hand. Have a lightly floured pastry cloth or board ready, and turn the dough onto it when it follows the fork around the bowl. Then knead it lightly about 8 times, folding it over onto itself and turning it each time. Roll out to about 1/2-inch thickness and lay over the top of the hot fruit. Scatter little dabs of butter (about 2 tablespoons cut up) across the top, and bake until the dough is golden (if it is on top) or about half an hour (if it's on the bottom).

Patrick's Blueberry Tart

The lemon and cinnamon combo is fantastic with blueberries.


Preheat oven to 400*F

Crust:
1 c flour
2 Tbl sugar
1/2 c butter (cold)
1 Tbl lemon juice

Filling:
1 c sugar
2 Tbl flour
1/4 tsp cinnamon
4 c blueberries

To make crust, combine dry ingredients and cut in butter with a fork,then add lemon juice.  Form crust in a 10" tart pan.

For filling, combine sugar, flour and cinnamon with  ~1/2 of the blueberries (about 2 1/2 c).  Pour into pan and bake 50-55 minutes or until crust is brown and filling bubbly.  Remove,  add remaining blueberries and allow to cool before serving at least 1 hour in the refrigerator.

Blue Pearl Quick Shrimp
Like everybody, there are days when we just want something good to eat quickly, and here are a few ways we use heads-on shrimp, harvested by our local shrimpers here in McClellanville. You don't need to spend extra time cleaning them--just rinse and get started. Cooking them whole keeps all the essence of the shrimp in your pan, and adds to the depth of the flavor, and it is quick, clean and easy to remove heads and tails after cooking. You can use any size shrimp you have.

Boiled shrimp: the longest part of this recipe is boiling the water. You need about four quarts to boil two pounds. Bring the water to a rolling boil. Add the shrimp and stir gently to spread through the hot water. Boil for three minutes, then try one. They should have a firm but creamy consistency. Don't cook to a rubbery texture--just pour them out into a colander, and add your favorite seasonings (Old Bay, Tony Cachere's, or any other mixture you like).

Pan sauteed: This is one of our favorites. Smash about six cloves of garlic while you are heating a few tablespoons of butter with a few tablespoons of olive oil. Add them when you can smell the olive oil, and then add enough shrimp to nearly cover the pan bottom. Add any herbs you like, dry or fresh (we like basil, rosemary, and thyme especially), cover for about two minutes over a medium heat, but turn the shrimp over when you see the pink coming up around the sides. Cook for another minute or two, until the whole shrimp is a light pink/coral color and all the gray is gone.

To serve, just put a big bowl of shrimp in the middle of the table, with a couple of bowls for people to remove the heads and peel the tails into. This is a great dinner, and we never have leftovers, but they would be good peeled and chopped up for a shrimp salad or just a quick snack with a squeeze of lemon.

Grilled: marinate whole shrimp for about an hour in a mixture of about half olive oil and half lemon juice or balsamic vinegar, with a couple of cloves of smashed garlic per pound of shrimp, and your favorite herbs. If you have fresh rosemary growing, use some of the stems as skewers if you like. Grill over moderately high heat until the edges of the shrimp turn pink, then turn over and grill another minute or so. Pull the head off, peel the tail, and devour. Repeat.


Blue Pearl Steamed Crabs
Bring a couple of inches of water to a rolling boil in the bottom of a steamer. Use a steamer basket. If you don't have a steamer basket, you can use an upside down pan lid that you set on a couple of spoons in the bottom of the larger pan...just keep the crabs out of the water, or be prepared to dump out lots of extra water as you pick them.

Check all the crabs to be sure they are alive--turn them upside down, and if their legs are moving on their own, they're fine to cook.

Put in a layer of crabs, sprinkle with Blue Pearl seasoning, put in another layer, season, and repeat until all the crabs are in. We steam ours for 33 minutes, and when we eat them, they are all bright red. Give every crab a sniff test--if you get a whiff of ammonia, the crab shouldn't be eaten.

This is how we cook them...you can use any seasoning you like, or none. Now it is time to crack the crabs. If you cook lots, pick them for their meat and use it in pasta sauce, crab soup or crab cakes to start. Folded into an omelette is also fantastic, as is using it on top of flounder baked with a little swiss cheese sauce.You can also wrap up steamed crabs in a brown bag (inside a plastic bag to reduce refrigerator odor sharing) and keep them in the fridge for eating later. A 30-second microwave visit will heat a crab up again for snack time.

Blue Pearl Crab Cakes

1 pound of picked blue crab meat

Saute until soft in a tablespoon or two of olive oil
1 half of a yellow onion, diced finely
2 medium ribs of celery, with leaves if they are present, diced finely
½ teaspoon crab seasoning

Mix together in a separate bowl

½ cup bread crumbs or crushed saltine crackers
1 large egg, beaten slightly before adding
salt and pepper to taste, or more crab seasoning and/or ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper, depending on how spicy you like your crab cakes
1-2 Tablespoons mayonnaise

3 Tablespoons fresh parsley leaves, chopped, to taste

Add the crab (after you've run your fingers through it for crab shell bits) and vegetables. Stir together, and shape into crab cakes no larger than about ¾-inch thick. Chill for a couple of hours so the flavors blend, unless you don’t have time, and then just cook ‘em up.

We spray a broiler pan with olive oil cooking spray and broil these until toasty brown on each side. You might like them fried for a few minutes on each side in a mixture of olive oil and butter (a couple of Tablespoons of each; the olive oil will heat too quickly without the butter).

You can make a quick cocktail sauce with the juice of half a lemon, a half cup of catsup, and a couple of tablespoons of prepared horseradish sauce (to taste), or just use some lemon juice. You can also take a couple of tablespoons of Dijon mustard, whisk with a tablespoon of fresh lemon juice and three tablespoons of olive oil and make a mustard sauce.

Crab Soup
Saute 1/2 c. finely diced celery in 3 Tablespoons butter until it is soft but not brown.
At the same time, in another pan, slowly heat 2 cups of light cream and 4 cups of milk until warm.

Add 3 Tablespoons of flour gradually to the celery and stir for a minute or so. Slowly add the warmed milk to the pan, stirring the whole time. The soup gets a little thicker as you stir.

Add 1 pound picked crab meat and heat until the crab is heated through (about 10 minutes on low heat). After the meat is heated through, turn off the heat. Add 2 Tablespoons of sherry and crab seasoning to taste. Serve in warmed cups or bowls with some crackers or fresh bread, a squeeze of lemon, some chopped Italian parsley leaves, and hot pepper sauce.

How to crack blue crab and pick their meat 

  • Buy your crabs live and as close to the time of cooking as possible. Store crabs in a cool, moist environment at 50°F in a breathable container such as a paper bag or cardboard box. Do not store crabs directly on ice. Storing live crabs in the refrigerator at 32° F will kill them, but you can keep them at a slightly warmer temperature overnight.
  • Blue crabs can be steamed or boiled and the key to crab, just like most seafood, is avoid overcooking them. We like to steam ours when we eat them by picking the meat out as described here. Just spread them out on table covered with newspaper to start them cooling and stop the cooking process. Gather everyone around, enjoy the friendship and fellowship, and the crabs too. You will want to have a table knife available.
  • Remove the two large front claws by breaking them off at the body. Set them aside for cracking later.
  • Turn the crab upside down. Use the tip of your table knife to lift the little pointed tab on the underside and use it like a poptop to lift towards the back and up to take off the top shell.
  • Break off the ‘face’ of the crab where it joins the lower shell and remove the soft, pointy gills and organs by scraping them out. These sometimes are called ‘devil’s fingers’ and should never be eaten as they are the filters. There are 5 or 6 on each side of the crab and are the first things you see when you lift off the top shell. Everything else is an edible delicacy.
  • Turn the body upside down, and holding each side in a hand, press down with your thumbs toward the center ‘seam’ and break the body in half. Squeeze or pinch each half to crush the carapace a bit. Peel off the broken parts of the carapace.
  • Note where the flat, paddled-shaped swim fin or back fin is attached to the body. This is the ‘back fin’ or ‘lump’ meat. You can take it out as a chunk or just pull this leg off, like the others, and pull off or suck the meat from the joints.
  • The rest of the white meat in the body of the crab is located in the chambers separated by thin walls of cartilage. Remove the meat from the chambers by sliding a knife under it and lifting it out or picking it out with your fingers. This meat is called the ‘flake’ or regular meat.
  • We like to make a little cut in the underside of the crab claw about ¼-inch long a little bit in from and parallel to the line of the ‘wrist’ where the base of the pincer is inserted.  Then we open up the pincher and prop the tips against a plate, and use the handle end of the knife to tap the claw on the opposite side of the cut to break it open. Gently break the claw open and remove the meat with your knife. Repeat the procedure for the other claw. You can crush the next segment up with a couple of taps of the handle or with your thumbs if you have a lot of hand strength. Extract the meat and feast on your crabs!

 

Please feel free to write us at info@bluepearlfarms.com if you have a favorite recipe to share.

 

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