Last week my friend Karen and I went late-season blueberry picking at a local orchard.
To get to the blueberry grove, we had to drive past a lily pond and fields of sunflowers, and then through several peach, pear and apple orchards.
Entering the netted berry patch was like entering Narnia; a magical kingdom decorated monochromatically, where the only sounds were our low voices exchanging stories and the buzzing of bees. It was cool and overcast and two hours later, with stained fingers and full boxes we had to force ourselves to leave this gentle place. Only two other people came and went while we were there; an older man walked by and said, “These berries on my cereal in the morning- can’t be beat!” The bushes were so loaded with fruit that we could hold our boxes under a branch and crumble off perfect blue gems, eating as we went. I was thrilled we hadn’t missed a chance to pick and stash more local fruit for winter.
Scabby ate some berries too. And sniffed about happily.
I froze all sixteen pounds in batches on cookie sheets and then placed them in freezer bags where we’ll use them in smoothies, combined with greens and super foods. I will say it again: picking fruit is the opposite of despair. It is zen, it is gratifying, it is pleasing to the senses.
Blueberry & Greens Smoothie (serves 1-2/ can be doubled):
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- 1 cup chopped raw kale/parsley/spinach and/or Swiss chard
- 1 cup almond or hemp milk (unsweetened plain or vanilla)
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds or ground flax seed (or chia gel)
- 1 teaspoon maca powder (a peruvian root for endurance and energy)
- 1 teaspoon bee pollen
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
- 1 dropper full alcohol-free liquid stevia