Today is all about bees and blueberries. I know it might be an unusual combination, but I hope to shed some light on this pairing. I also want to teach you how to make an equally odd (yet insanely delicious) dessert called Wild Blueberry Grunt. We’re #LiveFromTheHive!

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Back in early June, the lovely folks at Wyman’s of Maine invited me and several other bloggers to attend the first-ever Honey Bee Summit on Prince Edward Island in Canada. Why PEI? Well, Wyman’s has thousands of acres of wild blueberries growing on PEI and in New Brunswick, Canada.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wyman’s specifically brought us to their wild blueberry fields this time of year because things are buzzing. Literally. This is where the bees come in. Honey bees are critical to the growth of the wild blueberries. In fact, honey bees are responsible for pollinating one-third of the nation’s produce. Crazy, right? What this means is that if there are no bees, there are no berries.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

These bees are so critical to the wild blueberries that Wyman’s has its own professional beekeeper on site who manages and cares for hives of bees. In addition to these hives and native bee populations, Wyman’s also brings in a mixture of bumblebees and honey bees to their fields to ensure all of the blossoms are pollinated to produce as many berries as possible.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

While I knew that bees are important, I didn’t fully realize just how important they are until visiting the fields.

As part of the Wyman’s Honey Bee Summit, my fellow bloggers and I dressed up in bee suits and were given a full tour of the wild blueberry fields. We also had a chance to visit the resident bee hives to learn more about them and their important work.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Seeing and hearing the bees up close was such and wonderful and surreal experience. We even got to sample honey fresh from the hive. Talk about delicious.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Those marks in the honeycomb above are where we sampled the fresh honey. The beekeeper said the honeybees would have the comb “repaired” by the following day. Unreal!

I was also intrigued by the wild blueberry fields. While these fields have been cleared of trees, weeds, and other vegetation, the wild blueberry bushes grow naturally without humans planting them.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

You also might be wondering if there is a difference between wild and “cultivated” blueberries. Yes. Wild blueberries are smaller. They taste both sweet and tart and actually have a more intense flavor.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

The other great thing about Wyman’s wild blueberries is that they are always sold frozen, making them available year round. Wyman’s uses a method called Individual Quick Frozen. The berries are frozen within 24 hours of harvest which locks in the flavor. A Wyman’s blueberry thawed and served will taste as fresh as the day it was picked. Plus, frozen fruits boast the same health benefits (antioxidants, fiber, potassium, vitamin C, and folic acid) as fresh. Win-win, friends!

So, now that you know the connection between berries and bees, I thought it would be only fitting to create a delicious blueberry recipe in celebration of the bee’s hard work.

While visiting PEI, we bloggers stayed at The Inn at Bay Fortune. This place is incredible. (So wonderful that I’m hoping to put together another post just to talk about it.) If you’re ever on PEI, be sure to book a night there or at least make a reservation to dine at FireWorks. We had most of our meals at FireWorks. While picking a favorite dish is impossible, I was especially taken by the dessert we had one evening: Wild Blueberry Grunt.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Never heard of a grunt? Me either. I found out that it’s an old-fashioned, traditional dessert from Nova Scotia. Small balls of dough are spooned onto a shallow bowl of wild blueberries. Topped with a lid, the sweet dumplings are steamed to perfection. I’ve been told that as the dumplings steam, the juices work through them and they make a “grunting” noise. Hence, the name. Served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, this dessert seems familiar, but its unique cooking method puts it in a category all its own.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Since it’s an older recipe, this dish is very simple to make and can probably be put together with items you already have in your fridge and pantry. No new-fangled ingredients are required.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

There are a few different ways to make grunt. However, I followed the directions from FireWorks where the whole dumpling is submerged into the blueberry goodness, rather than just resting on top. Because of this, you might have a little extra blueberry juice and berries. No worries, though. The extra berries and juice make a delicious topping for ice cream or a great base for cocktails.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Okay, enough talk. Let’s get steaming.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt

Serves 8

Here's what you will need:
6 cups (2 - 15-ounce bags) Wyman's of Maine Wild Blueberries
3 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
1 cup buttermilk
Vanilla ice cream for serving

In a large cast iron pot, add the blueberries, water, sugar, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Stir to combine. Bring to a gentle boil over medium-low heat.

In the meantime, prepare your dumpling dough but whisking together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Using your fingers, cut the butter into the dry mixture. Then, stir in the buttermilk until the dough just comes together.

When the blueberry mixture is at a low boil, turn the heat to low. Spoon and submerge the dough into the blueberry mixture. (Each dumpling should be about 1x2 inches, yielding about 16 dumplings.) Cover with a lid and cook over low heat until the dough is cooked. About 15 minutes.

Serve the dumplings with the blueberries and sauce spooned over top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Print

Pretty amazing, right?

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Naturally, the intense sweet and tart flavors from the Wyman’s wild blueberries, give this dessert incredible flavor.

Granted it’s not the most elegant looking dessert, but I love it just the same. In fact, I probably love it even more because it looks beautifully homemade and tastes out-of-this-world.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

My favorite part is that while the dumpling looks mostly blue from the outside, when you cut in, you see this gorgeous white fluffy dough.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

So good. You need to give this a try.

And that, my friends, concludes today’s lesson on bees, blueberries, and grunts. I hope you learned a little something.

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

And remember, bees are our friends. No bees = No berries.

If you give this recipe a try, be sure to let us know what you think. Enjoy!

Wild Blueberry Grunt #LiveFromTheHive | inspiredbycharm.com

Wyman’s of Maine graciously covered travel expenses for this trip, however I received no additional compensation. As always, the thoughts and opinions are my own.
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Comments

  • Michelle Mortensen at

    Ooooooh! This looks and sounds divine. Seriously, my mouth is watering!!!
    Best & Bisous,
    Michelle from Simply Santa Barbara

  • Elle at

    Yes, wild blueberries are incredible. Your grunt is the bee’s knees!

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      Haha! The bee’s knees! That’s clever.

      Thank you!
      xo Michael

  • Sharon at

    Lucky you, been to PEI hundreds of time, as a New Brunswicker now living in Maine Wymans berries are THE best.

  • Ardith at

    YUM!!!! Michael, thank you so much for sharing this recipe and the story behind the wild blueberries. Have a wonderful weekend, Ardith

  • Karen Tannenbaum at

    I have heard of grunt before, but have never made it. Oh my, does this look amazingly good. Best part, you don’t have to wait for fresh blueberries….love frozen fruit.

  • Treasures By Brenda at

    Looks delicious! There’s nothing better than a blueberry dessert. In my humble opinion, that is.
    (I raked blueberries as a summer job in Nova Scotia as a young teenager. Hard work!)

  • Jennifer Farley at

    Um, how do I make that Hello popup happen on my site. I seriously just died laughing. More importantly, though, this dessert looks phenomenal! It was so great meeting you in PEI. Your laugh is contagious and I loved getting to know you. I hope our paths cross again.

    • Michael Wurm, Jr. at

      Awe! You are too sweet! It was REALLY great meeting you too. Thank you so much.

      xo Michael

  • Roby at

    The simple answer is: It’s none of our business. Either a businessman can use his capital the way he see fit, or he can’t. The former is liberty, the later is sevirtude.Tackle the issue of immigrant workers on the political level, fine; but let people use their own property. Don’t conflate the two issues into one.

  • Rachel at

    My Mom made this a lot when I was growing up in Connecticut (her Dad was from Maine and I think it came from his family), but we called it Bluberry Slump. This brought back great memories of being a kid in August. Can’t wait to try it for my kids!

  • Rachel at

    My Mom made this a lot when I was growing up in Connecticut (her Dad was from Maine and I think it came from his family), but we called it Blueberry Slump. This brought back great memories of being a kid in August. Can’t wait to try it for my kids!

  • Melody at

    My mom used to make this when I was growing up. I just love that you posted a recipe for it. She is gone now and I had no idea how to make it. I can’t wait to make it vegan (should be pretty easy since the recipe is so simple), and post about it on my own blog. I will be sure to include a link back to your blog. Thanks again… finding this made my day!

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