Not only do Blue Yonder Family Berries make jams, vinegars and teas, but they will also personally come to your house and make your grandmother's cookie recipe.*
*Okay, maybe not exactly. Maybe I just got really lucky with that.
I have known about Kristen and her husband Michael for a year or so now through mutual friends. And I'm still kind of in love with their amazing blueberry farm wedding. So I was excited to learn that they were back in Brevard and I could finally get the chance to meet them. Not only did I get to meet them, but they came over, jams in hand, and made my grandmother's recipe for thumbprint cookies as we talked and played with my crazy dog. The cookies are traditionally made with raspberry jam, but I'm thinking it might be time to start a tradition of my own. Blueberry Pumpkin Butter Thumbprints. The combination of blueberry and pumpkin butter might sound a little strange at first, but I promise you it is SO delicious. Every night since they brought it over I have been sneaking a few spoonfuls right from the jar.
And can I just say that their family farm is a pretty special place around these parts? Every May, the Holland Family Blueberry Farm opens up their fields for people all over Central Florida to pick fresh blueberries. Word spreads pretty fast around here when it's time. Some of us may be known to pop a blueberry or two in our mouth as we pick. We come home with pounds of them, to be added into pancakes and muffins and made into jams or just eaten by the handful. The very first time I went with my family, we were caught in a Florida sunshower and got soaked as we picked. I have to say it was a pretty memorable experience.
So it's no wonder their jams taste SO delicious. It's family. And love. And heart. And a passion for growing things locally.
This past weekend, they opened up the farm for the very first of what I hope to be many Farm Fests. There were local vendors selling crafts (I may have bought many things), plenty of food, face painting, horse rides and games. I took my daughter, who had a great time running around and crossing the little wooden bridge. And crossing it again. And again.
But she was indeed a pretty happy camper there. And so was I.
And if you're looking for a well-tested, well-cherished Christmas cookie recipe to make, here is my grandmother's recipe for thumbprints. You can fill them with almost any kind of jam, but I recommend blueberry, seedless raspberry or apricot. Come to think of it, lemon curd might also be fantastic. But going with the spirit of this post, let's focus on blueberry jam. Yep, only blueberry jam.
1 1/2 cups sifted flour
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 c butter
1/2 c firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg, separated
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c finely chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Sift flour and salt; cream butter and gradually add brown sugar until fluffy. Add in egg yolk and vanilla then dry ingredients.
Chill dough 1 hour.
Shape dough into balls 3/4" in diameter; dip into slightly beaten egg white then roll into pecans.
Place on undressed cookie sheet, press deep hole in center and bake 12-15 minutes.
Let cool and add jam.