So I recently stumbled across a recipe I thought I would stick away for another time; I bookmarked it and went on with my day. Next on my list was grocery shopping, and ironically, the main ingredient, blueberries, was on a crazy sale that day. 2lbs of blueberries for $1.99. Can’t beat that! The recipe is a delicious, multipurpose Blueberry Lemon Honey syrup. I had fresh lemons at home already, as well as a jar of fresh honey from a local beekeeper. Needless to say, my plans changed and I decided to give this syrup a whirl.
The nice thing about the syrup is that it can be used in pretty much anything you can think of. It’s delicious in teas like chamomile, regular lipton, green tea, etc…and it gives a great antioxidant boost! I also tried it out on belgian waffles with a little butter, and it was absolutely tasty. My husband was drooling over my shoulder hoping I wouldn’t finish it all. I did. Sorry hubs, maybe next time. I also thought that it might make a good ice cream topping, or an addition to a mixed drink for adults. The possibilities could be endless with a little imagination! Maybe a topping for a fresh angel food cake, versus the classic strawberry? If anyone comes up with anything interesting, definitely share it here in the comments, I’m always open for new ideas and love learning new things!
Anyway, by now I’m sure you’re drooling and want me to just get down to business and share the recipe with you, huh?
Blueberry Syrup with Lemon and Honey
Recipe From Rachel @ Grow a Good Life
- 4 cups blueberries
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup of water
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice (fresh is ideal, as you will need the zest from a lemon as well)
- Using a paring knife or vegetable peeler, peel five 1-inch strips of zest from the lemon then juice the lemon reserving 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Set aside.
- Extract the blueberry juice by combining blueberries and water in a saucepan over low heat. Gently mash the blueberries with a potato masher and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Strain the juice into a heatproof bowl, pressing hard on the solids. Discard the solids. **Tip from A Recipe to Life: Another way you can do this, especially if you’d like to leave a little of the blueberry solids in there for either decoration or flavor is to use an immersion blender and break down the berries to consistency that you want them. I did this before I heated them, but you could do either.
- Return the blueberry juice to the saucepan and add the lemon zest and honey. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of your spoon or registers 225° on a candy thermometer. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Continue stirring and boil over high heat for 1 minute. Remove from heat, discard lemon zest, and allow the blueberry syrup to cool. Pour into just-cleaned bottles. Seal and refrigerate for up to 3 months.
Since we are on the topic of nuts, it seems, I figured I would share a neat little trick I learned of recently. I always thought that making nut butters, like peanut or almond, required time and oils, etc. Well, it’s really much more simple than that! This is a fantastic thing for people who really dislike extra oily peanut butter, or the people who really dislike the preservatives and other unnecessary stuff that companies put into the nut butters that are marketed these days. It’s frustrating, in my opinion, to pick up a jar of peanut butter, and see that 90% of it is an oily mess. This recipe for nut butters brings out the natural oils, with absolutely NO added ingredients whatsoever. So if there is any separating (the natural oils will sometimes separate from the butter), you’ll be happy and comforted to know that it’s not some random added oil with who knows what else in it.
All you need for this is whatever nut or nuts you would like to make into a butter, and a food processor. Not only is this super easy, but you can also add so much variety to it at the end. If you want a chocolate peanut butter, you can make it. If you want to add spices or something to it, you can! You can also used seasoned nuts to add flavor too. Honey roasted nuts make a fantastic butter, and so do BBQ roasted ones. Obviously BBQ roasted nut butter probably wouldn’t go too well with jelly for a classic PB&J, but hey, this is all about being creative!
Depending on how much butter you want to make, measure out your nuts. Once blended, they usually reduce down to about half the amount you originally started with. I used 3 cups of nuts, and ended up with about a cup and a half of butter at the end.
All you need is the nuts. No oils, no added salt, no water, nothing. Easy as can be.
Place the nuts into the food processor, and turn it on. This part is cool because you can watch as it processes the nuts first into a fine powder, and then into a big thick ball, and then you’ll see the natural oils from the nuts begin to release. As it does, the butter will start to take shape. It will start to get more smooth, like a normal peanut butter. This whole process usually takes about 3-5 minutes. After it is smooth enough for your liking, it’s done. It will probably be a little bit more runny than the peanut butter you are used to, but upon refrigeration (which is necessary because there are no preservatives in this butter), it will thicken up. Very rarely will you ever see any separating with this recipe, but if so, it will be easy to mix back together.
I tried using the mixed nut blend from Costco, and it turned out really good! It has cashews, almonds, brazil nuts, macadamias, etc. It was a little on the salty side, but will go fantastic with a sweet jelly!
For families with nut allergies, this could be a big lifesaver, being able to make butters at home, because they are WAY overpriced in the grocery store, in my opinion. You can make almond butter, cashew butter, etc. A 16oz can of nuts sold at the store is much cheaper than buying a jar of premade butter. If you have the five minutes it takes to throw it into a processor, why not try it?