It’s blackberry pickin’ time again.
Last year was my first time to pick blackberries and I couldn’t wait to go again this year. So, armed with some bug spray, sun screen, and some bottles of water, we set out for the farm to pick-pick-pick until we had enough to last for months in my freezer.
Was it ever hot the day we picked the berries. I picked about 12 lbs. before I finally said “uncle” and gave up. It was hot as blue blazes, but did I get some beauties! A couple were the size of a golf ball and I had those laid out on a plate alongside a golf ball to take a picture for you and before I could, someone in my house and I won’t say who (but there are only two of us here) ate the golfball size blackberries.
I don’t know about you, but when I go picking, whether it is strawberries, blackberries, blueberries or any other kind of fruit I seem to get really picky. I look for the plumpest berries I can find, stopping occasionally to pop one or two into my mouth. I don’t think I have ever seen a sign that says “no tasting”. If there were such a sign I would just hold my breath on the way out and hope they don’t ask to see my tongue. If they did, they would find a tongue stained purple from the berries I have been sampling. You have heard of “taste test” haven’t you?
Why is it when we pick things ourselves the foods we prepare with our bounty seems so much better. I made my own peach preserves last year and can’t wait to do it again this year. Even though I don’t eat preserves that often, someone will benefit from my making it though I’m sure. I don’t ever use acronyms when texting or typing but for this recipe, all I can say is OMG this is a delicious recipe.
So on father’s day my husband had something more special than his bowl of Cheerios.
Blackberry French Toast
6 slices day old white bread with crust removed (I used French Bread)
4 oz. cream cheese
1 c. fresh or frozen blackberries
1 c. milk
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
5 1/2 Tbsp. maple syrup or honey
1 c. sugar
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 c. water
1 c. fresh blackberries, or frozen
1 Tbsp. butter
Cut bread into 1 inch cubes; place half is a greased 13x9x2 baking dish. Cut cream cheese into 1 inch cubes; place over bread. Top with blackberries and remaining bread. In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add milk, cinnamon, and syrup; mix well. Pour over bread mixture. Cover and chill 8 hours or overnight.
Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Uncover; bake 25-30 minutes more, or until golden brown and the center is set.
For blackberry sauce: In a saucepan, combine sugar and corn starch; add water. Bring to a boil over medium heat; boil for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in blackberries; reduce heat. Simmer for 8-10 minutes or until berries burst. Stir in butter until melted. Serve over french toast. Yield: 6-8 servings (1 3/4 cups of sauce).