Normally I like to start off with a pretty picture but this is the closest to a pretty picture I can get when it comes to the Maritime traditional dessert, blueberry grunt. Don’t believe me?
Seriously, I think this would make a FABULOUS Halloween dessert! Since I did not get one blueberry dessert at the festival I decided to make up for it by making one myself with wild Nova Scotia blueberries. I called my mother-in-law Lorraine up and she dictated an old Newfoundland magazine recipe to me that she has been making for years. You can not get a more authentic recipe than that!
You begin with the syrup:
4 cups of fresh/frozen blueberries
1/2 tsp of nutmeg
1/2 tsp of cinnamon
3/4 cup of sugar
1 tbsp of lemon juice
1/2 cup of water
Combine boil gently and cook slightly down.
While that cooks you make the dumplings:
2 cups of four
4 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of salt
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp of margarine (I used butter)
a little milk
Sift dry ingredients in a bowl. Cut in margarine/butter. Add just enough milk to make soft biscuit dough. Drop spoonfuls on top of hot sauce.
Please note: I had to add quite a bit of milk (a little at a time) to create a wet dumpling. I hope the photograph helps show you the consistency you want. A bit sticky but holds together.
Cover tightly with lid, simmer 15 minutes. Dumplings will puff out. The dessert gets its name from the grunting sound the syrup makes as it cooks away on medium low heat. The dumplings get bigger and absorb the fabulous liquid. Whatever you do, do not peek! The steam is what cooks the dumpling so let it grunt away.
Fantastic! The essence of blueberries infused into homemade dumplings covered in their own sauce? For a blueberry lover like me, this is the kind of food I live for. Despite its odd-looking appearance and the fact the sauce will turn your teeth black, this is a real homemade treat that I doubt any restaurant could do better. I give this recipe five out of five wooden spoons.