Thursday, July 31, 2008

Blackberry Blueberry Bruise Before BlueBell

The picture above was taken back in May. I had been photographing gators in their secluded gator command post and I was hot and hungry. The old logging road that runs past the gator hole was lined with wild blackberry bushes so I chowed down as I walked back to the JEEP.

That was two months ago, so wild blackberries are pretty much finished for the year here as are my tame blueberries ... finally.
I had a magnificent harvest that stretched from mid-May to mid-July. Technically, I could go pick a few last berries out back right now, but I'm only counting the period of time where I could fill a bowl daily. The last dozen or so berries I'll leave for the birds.

It's time for my blueberry bushes to chill out for a while and just be bushy.

Now it's time to anticipate the scuppernong and muscadine grapes ... as I know the squirrels are doing even as I type.

While we were up in the Georgia mountains, we went blueberry and blackberry picking. Some of these actually made it all the way home to Florida where Mrs. FC combined them in a dish that I believe she called a "Berry Buckle".
She's not available to verify that this morning, but I know it was a recipe she found in one of our Southern Living Annual Cook Books.
I believe the original recipe was for blueberries, but she just combined the two black and blue berries ... sort of a baked bruise.
It was spectacular served warm with Blue Bell Vanilla ice cream.
Micro-rant follows ...
Speaking of Blue Bell Ice Cream ...
What is it with their Mocha Almond Fudge flavor? This is the most amazing ice cream flavor's practically mud pie in a carton. (Search this blog for mud pie ... I posted about it a long time ago)
Do the employees eat it at the factory as soon as they make it? (I don't blame them)
Are the grocery stock boys hoarding it?
Do you ever see more than one carton of the stuff in a store?
Weeks go by with no sign of it and then suddenly there is one carton sitting there.
It's a mystery to me.
Just don't get between me and that last carton.


Susan said...

I want to dive into your photo of "berry buckle"... with my mouth wide open.

Floridacracker said...

Race ya!

Dani said...

LOVE that stuff!! It's soooo good.

Laura said...

i'm on a d-i-e-t, so reading this post was a mistake!

ugh, now i'm hungry.


Dani said...

In my haste to get my bunny to stop nibbling on my ankle, I forgot to say it's the ice cream I love. I'll have to try that berry buckle as well tho. Yums

Anonymous said...

Speaking of ice cream...Thunder and I just left a mall in Kuantan, Malaysia that had a Baskin-Robins ice cream parlor! The line looked as though they were giving out gold! But we're sure it wasn't near as good as what you can whip up! Posted today and have lots more coming. Look for the one where I almost got run over by a water buffalo! Yes, it really happened!

Mark said...

Those blackberries are plump! We had lots of thorny blackberry bushes early on, and I actually managed to find a few edible berries, but the heat and lack of rain have turned most of the berries into hard, brown little things, and the plants themselves are not doing much better. I generally leave the blackberries for the deer anyway, hoping they will eat them and leave our shrubs alone. Some of the muscadine vines show a few little green grapes, but it looks like a sparse crop this year.

robin andrea said...

That berry buckle looks quite yummy. I would love a little taste. The berries are just coming into season here. I may have to whip up a little berry something myself. Yum.

Just the Right Size said...

I get the same thing with either the "Cinnamon Dulche de Leche" or the "Fleur de Sel Caramel" by Haagen Daz. Who steals them?

The best ice cream is homemade, but d-a-n-g-e-r-o-u-s to have around. So goooood!

Deb said...

I had some "official business" this morning at a lake near a state forest with sandy soil and a few recent (~2 years) logged areas. I could not resist pulling over and sampling the rampant wild blueberry crop. Wild ones are small though; in about fifteen minutes I didn't get enough to make a berry buckle, but I did get enough for snacking at my desk, like I'm doing right now!

caroline said...

Just returned from Lake Champlain/Adirondacks back to South is blackcap season. Locally known as blackcaps, probably to others as black raspberries, it is a race with the orioles, robins and cedar waxwings to eat them warm off the vine.
Ice cream issue there is black raspberry flavor made by Hershey and Stewarts. Strictly a "back east" offering, we overindulge every July. Even drip some on a postcard to send to brother-in-law suffering withdrawal in Wyoming. How nice is that!
Caroline in South Dakota

Miz S said...

The berry buckle looks delectable. I was almost moved to lick the computer screen but I came to my senses in time.

threecollie said...

I think there is an ice cream conspiracy going on across the nation. We live in the third largest dairy producing state in the nation...however we went to our local dairy store yesterday and NONE of our favorite flavors was available. We made substitutions, but the were terribly bare.
There wasn't a single carton of sherbet in the place.
No fair!

SwampAngel65 said...

Ehen I lived in Texas, we went to the Bluebell factory once. OMG, it was heaven! My all time favorite is Chocolate Decadence, but haven't had any since leaving the Lone Star state in 1992. They don't sell BlueBell in Miami :( I can find it when I go to Lake Placid, but the flavors are limited. I would love to try that mocha Almond. Sounds deelish!

Ah scuppernogs and muscadines! I wish we could get some down here. The vines are everywhere, but the critters and birds get to them before you can even notice there are any. They sell them in Publix for some outrageous $6 a box! I like 'em, but not that much!

misti said...

If only I could find BlueBell in South Florida. I've heard it is on the SW coast, but not here in the Banana Republic. This Texan's favorite! Strawberry is the best, but I can handle just about any of it!

Anonymous said...

You had my attention at Mocha Almond Fudge! I just became a Blue Bell member and got a $1 off coupon! Off to the store! If you have a Publix by you, they are sometmes good at special orders.

I was at a garage sale and found a book that you might like. It's called Priceless Florida by Ellie Whitney and others. When I got home I thought, okay now what?! If you'd like it I can mail it to your school, home or IF you ever come to our pond club I can give it to you!!


SophieMae said...

DAWG! That looks GOOOOOOOOD!!!! I'm not right sure I've ever even et bluebell brand. I'm an Edy's kinda gal. I don't get ice cream very often, anyhow, but I'll look for BB's boxed mudpie next time I'm in the big city.

PS - did I miss a day? isn't this a friday post? 8-}

Floridacracker said...

Your rabbit's probably a Blue Bunny Ice Cream fan.

A diet?

Try to enjoy yourself without getting trampled.

I'd like the squirats to just focus on the wild muscadines and leave my planted vines alone!

Sounds good, just remember to share.

Just Right,
Ditto, homemade is best, but always seems to go so fast.

There has to be some perks to government work!

None of the good raspberry varieties grow down here and even the blacks rarely show up in grocery stores.
I do love raspberry jam ... super fruity.
That really is cleverly cruel to dab ice cream on the postcard.

Miz S,
Have your wipes ready by the screen.
This was good, not as sweet as my easy blueberry cake I make.

Forget the gas shortage, there's an ice cream shortage!!!

Weird ... I thought BB icecream would have been statewide.
Nothing else tastes like a scuppernong or muscadine. Painful to think they aren't available either.
... and I envy your visit to the BB factory.

It's really hard to top a simple fruit icecream like strawberry or peach.

My nearest Publix is Tower Road in G'ville ... about 40 miles.
I'd probably eat it on the ride home.
Wow, thanks for thinking of me. I really meant to get to one of your meetings a while back, but dropped the ball.
Could you email me at

Edy's Expresso Chip is similar and very good.
It is more of a Friday Food post, but all this rain has kept me from getting any good photos.
I swear it's like living in Seattle this summer.

Anonymous said...

All I can say is that yar a DAWG! Those look to good, nothing like fresh berries, and those are my all time favorite. But, I wouldn't say no to any fresh berries. Just remember how hard it is to take off what you put in.

Bro J

Anonymous said...

Those berrys look good and they would make a good cobbler. We planted some schrubs this year so hopefully in a couple of years they look just as good. jabo

Floridacracker said...

Bro J,
Not hard for me.
Blackberries are a favorite of mine too ... cold blackberry pie for breakfast with a glass of real milk ... no fork needed thankyou.

Good luck with them.
I planted Brazos blackberries one year and had bad results even though my blueberries have thrived.
I need to try again!

Stacey063 said...

Hey Y'all - we moved last month to Alabama from Florida and guess what? There's actual Bluebell factories here. Your post made me mark it down to find out if I can tour. It's so hot, that would be good!