An old fashioned dessert
What a delight to read through old cookbooks and come across dessert names like apple pandowdy, gooseberry fool, and our new favorite the blueberry grunt. Old fashioned and completely different from any fruity dessert I’ve ever made, it’s now going to be on my summer dessert list for sure.
The Blueberry Grunt
Supposedly the “grunt” comes from the sound the biscuit dough makes when it cooks in the juicy berries. But maybe it comes from the happy grunts of your family as they tuck into this classic blueberry dessert. I don’t know but the grunt is a grunt and that’s all there is to it.
What is a blueberry grunt? It’s kind of like a cobbler and also a buckle but it’s a little different too. You don’t pre-cook the fruit in a separate pan like my Rhubarb Cobbler. And for another difference it’s not thickened either, so the fruit layer is a little thinner but it works in this recipe.
The spices are different in this blueberry grunt as well. Molasses, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a blast of fresh lemon give this summery dessert almost a Christmas taste. In fact, my real husband suggested we have it for Christmas, good thing I froze a couple of pounds of blueberries this summer.
For good old fashioned cookbooks, you can’t beat a James Beard book, this blueberry grunt is adapted from his American Cookery Book (affiliate link.) They’re probably some of my all-time favorites to read and inspire me. He always notes the origin or the history if he knows it and they’re just a joy to read.
Blueberry grunt tastes best when served hot out of the oven. As it cools the berries thicken up a bit, still tasty but just a bit thicker. And please pour fresh heavy cream on this! Or half n half. Or add a dollop of whipped cream.
- 3 cups fresh blueberries
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- pinch of cardamom, optional
- zest of half a lemon
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1 cup flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- pinch of salt, two if using unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup butter, cold
- 1/3 cup of milk
- 1 egg
- preheat oven to 375˚
- put berries in a 9-inch pie pan
- stir the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom together, sprinkle over the berries
- drizzle the molasses over the top of the berries
- sprinkle the zest over the berries as well
- bake in the oven 5-10 minutes until the berries just start to juice
- meanwhile stir the flour, baking powder and salt together in a mixing bowl
- cut in the butter, or use your hands to rub it in until the mixture looks like fine crumbs
- when the berries just start to juice pull them out of the oven and increase the heat to 425˚
- add the milk and egg to the flour mix and stir to combine
- drop by spoonfuls over the hot berries, spread almost to the edges of the pan
- bake 20 minutes or until the top is browned and the berries are juicy
- serve hot