I’ve been a little remiss lately on getting a blog topic written for Simply Sophisticated. I really don’t have a great excuse other than the fact that I’ve enjoyed summer, fun times and getting ready to make a trip to Italy.
I have to admit to being so excited about the Italy trip. I’ve never been to Europe at all and Italy has always been my dream. It’s finally coming true! I thought when we first purchased the plane tickets and reserved our Airbnb locations in Florence and Rome that the year would drag by so slowly but here we are a few weeks away from leaving. The time just flew by so fast!
In many ways, I’m more excited but in some, a little sad because it also means that summer is almost over. Summer seemed really short here in Denver this year. It started late with a late snow and has been relatively cool. We’ve had a few hot days sprinkled in but not that many and while the days are hot now, the evenings have that autumn crisp bite to them. A warning that fall is most definitely on the way.
So before it goes, I have to share a dish featuring one of my favorite summertime fruits, blueberries. Blueberries just taste of everything summery. They’re a beautiful powdery blue reminding me of cool lakes and hot blue skies. The flavors sweet or slightly tart depending on variety, filled with juices that mingle perfectly with lime, lemon or basil.
I pop them in waffles, on top ice cream, eat them straight out of the container and always make a cool lemony custard topped with them. Normally the custard goes into a glass, followed by a handful of fresh blueberries but this time, I needed them to go. We were meeting friends at the Botanic Gardens and I wanted the blue goodness to go with us, so I made tarts using the custard and blueberries instead.
Blueberry Topped Tarts
4 Tbsp. Unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt (don’t use salt if using salted butter)
1 tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large bowl and stir in powdered sugar, flour and salt.
Press crust mixture into tart pans, covering bottom and sides. Place in the oven and cook until lightly brown, about 12-15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. all purpose flour
1/8 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups of half-n-half cream
1 Tbsp. lemon zest, finely grated
4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
2 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1 cup fresh blueberries
Powdered sugar and mint leaves for garnish, optional
Add the sugar, flour and salt to a medium-sized saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat and gradually add cream and lemon zest, stirring until blended. Bring to a boil; stir continuously and cook for 2 minutes. Sauce will become thickened and bubbly. Remove from the heat. Add about 1/4 cup of hot mix to the beaten eggs and mix well. Add another 1/4 cup, stir well and then add the egg mix to the pot of hot mixture. Return the pot to the burner and bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and vanilla until butter is melted. Pour the custard into the prepared tarts. Top with the fresh blueberries. Place in the fridge for at least an hour until the custard is cool and set.
More Blueberry Goodness: