I can’t recall when we started making Blueberry Buckle at the Bakehouse, but it’s been a classic and a fan favorite pretty much ever since. If you haven’t had it, it’s a wonderful crumb-topped, cinnamon-scented, butter-enriched, and blueberry-laced coffee cake that you can eat, happily, any time of the day.
Blueberries are one of the most wonderful Native North American foods. They are a big part of the culture and cooking of the Ojibwe people. Dried blueberries were one of the best indigenous sweeteners and were long used medicinally—they have lots of antioxidants, nutrients of all sorts, can help lower blood pressure, reduce risk of heart disease, and a dozen other good things.
Blueberry Buckle became popular after the publication of Elsie Masterton’s 1959 Blueberry Hill Cookbook. I know the book because of Masterton’s daughter, Laurey who was a wonderfully kind and inspiring caterer and creative leader in her hometown of Asheville (where French Broad Chocolate, now in those terrific Townie Brownies, is also located). Laurey was a long-time ZingTrain client who lost a long battle with cancer in 2014. Her life message was a good one: “Don’t postpone joy.” I still have the T-shirt from Laurey’s Catering with that on the back, and think of her every time I wear it.
The Blueberry Buckle from the Bakehouse is about as versatile a baked good as you can get. Great for breakfast, and excellent for dessert with a scoop of vanilla gelato. Because it can stand up to the sun without melting (no chocolate!), it’s ideal to pack for picnics. It’s a beautiful, delicious gift. Buy a bunch and keep them stashed in the freezer for special Sunday mornings as we move out of berrying season into the fall. Thinking in the Ojibwe tradition, it turns out it’s really good drizzled with maple syrup, also an essential element of pre-Columbian cooking of this region. You can eat it just as it is, or add a bit of whipped cream. Maybe better still, put some good butter into a skillet over medium heat, and when the butter starts to bubble lightly, add slices of the Buckle and cook it until it’s golden brown. In the spirit of the summer season, the Roadhouse has added a Maize and Blueberry Buckle Sundae—a slice of Buckle served with a scoop of the Creamery’s Maize and Blueberry gelato. Garnished with whipped cream, and served with maple syrup on the side!
Blueberry Buckle will be on the counters at the Bakeshop through Labor Day.
HUNGRY FOR MORE?
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- Give us a call to reserve one for pickup at the Bakehouse: 734-761-2095
- Order online for pickup today at the Bakehouse
- Learn how to make your own in our Coffee Cake Craft hands-on baking class