Monday, July 9, 2018

Mulberry Recipes

So, as mentioned in my previous post, I was planning to try several mulberry recipes with my recent "harvest" from our tree.  I had about 2 3/4 large mason jars filled, which was probably 6 cups of berries.  


I had to start by trying to remove the little green stems that were on every berry.  Some recipes say it's okay to keep them and others suggest removing them by using your fingernails as a little "clipper".  Just pulling the stem out didn't work since it's so long and deeply embedded, the berry would just fall apart with the pull.  I will admit that I did give up and only about half of the berries were de-stemmed.  Since I eat them right off the tree, stem and all, this really did not bother me.  And my hands are now a lovely shade of purple... 



The first recipe I tried was this Mulberry Cobbler, which I adapted from: http://sharonglasgow.com/2013/06/mulberry-harvesting-10-ideas-of-what-to-do-with-them/

The original was very health conscious, using gluten-free baking flour, organic sugar, raw milk, etc.  All the stuff I do not ever use.  So, my version was basically this: 

1 cup self rising flour
1 cup granulated sugar 
3/4 cup 1% milk 
2 teaspoons vanilla 
1 stick of butter. 

Directions:
1.      Melt butter in bottom of baking dish (I used a 9x13 glass dish). 
2.      Mix flour, sugar, milk and vanilla together then spread on top of melted butter. 
3.      Mix 2 cups of mulberries in 1/3 cup of sugar- heat to melt sugar.  
4.      Pour on top of flour mixture in baking dish. 
5.      Bake for 35-40 minutes in 375 oven–or until done.

I will admit that the 1 stick of butter seemed so excessive.  I almost was going to pour some out, especially when I added my flour mixture in and so much of the butter was rising to the top.  I swirled it around to try and mix everything and it made a very rich base.   I added the berries, and swirled some more. 




I cooked it for 40 minutes, but probably could have cut it down by a few.  It has a nice brown top and was definitely cooked through.  And all that butter?  It definitely was perfect, although I do notice it still sticks to the bottom a little, which I thought the butter may help, but maybe now when it is melted? We aren't about eating pretty in our house, so as long as I can scrape every last morsel off the pan the family is happy.This one is a keeper!  I love the mild flavor of the cobbler, with just a little sweetness.  It ended up being my dinner last night!






Next up were Mulberry Muffins, adapted from: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/18516/mulberry-muffins/
Boy, did I screw this one up. My dad always says to try a recipe exactly as it is written the first time around, then you can start making adjustments the next time. I wish I did that with this one.  Instead, I listened to a few of the commenters and made some of my own tweaks.  I saw that the original recipe only made 6 muffins, so I doubled it right off the bat.  Then I added brown sugar based on some suggestions, and finally the original called for applesauce, which I didn't put in and that was a mistake!  These were stuck to the paper wrappers and very dry!  My husband slathered them with butter and said he would definitely eat them again, but I am not sure that I will.  Here is the original recipe without my changes....I will probably make them again, but definitely follow exactly as stated.

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 pinch salt
1/2 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons applesauce
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup mulberries

Directions
1.      Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).Grease 6 jumbo muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
2.      Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt. In a medium bowl, mix together sour cream, milk, applesauce, egg and almond extract. Stir in flour mixture until batter is smooth. Fold in mulberries. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups.
3.      Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of a muffin comes out clean.




My final experiment was Mulberry Jam which I found here: https://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2012/06/mulberry-jam.html. This one was so simple, it was easy for me to follow it exactly.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cups mulberries, rinsed (the tiny green stems do not need to be removed)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 tablespoons water
  
Directions
1.      Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Drop heat to medium-low and add jars and their lids. Simmer for 10 minutes to sterilize. Using tongs, remove jars and lids and place on a clean towel to let cool.
2.      In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan set over medium heat, combine mulberries, sugar, and water. Bring to a boil, boil for one minute, then drop to a simmer. Cook fruit, stirring occasionally, until foam subsides and mixture thickens slightly, about 7 minutes.
3.      Using a ladle, carefully transfer hot jam to sterilized jars. Wipe mouths of jars clean and screw on lids very tightly. Let cool at room temperature for at least 8 hours before using.


This was my first time canning anything, so I am glad I found a very easy recipe to start with.  I sterilized my little jars just like it told me.



And melted my sugar into the berries and water.  So pretty to watch it boil down!

 



Then I let it cool overnight, just in time to have some on my Dave's Killer Bread this morning. 





OMG, YUMMY!  Not too sweet (I may actually cut back on a little bit of sugar next time) and it spread on nicely without being too runny, which I feared.  This was a definite make again!



So, here are the FRUITS of my labor on a beautiful Sunday afternoon.







I've already started picking more berries, and I can't wait to see what other recipes I can find.