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Yummy Blueberry Crumble Bars

Ahhh, another lovely week of summer in Chicago. Where we all wore coats and gloves and blankets to the 53 overcast and windy baseball game on Saturday. Where I decided that no, it isn’t time to turn off my oven for the season, and I can make one more sweet treat before I resort entirely to the grill.

Of course, my first choice was chocolate chip bars, but then I decided that maybe I should be nice to Little Miss and see if I could make something dairy-free instead. I thought about what I could do for awhile, and I finally came up with an idea. And luckily, I had frozen blueberries in my freezer — as opposed to sitting on my counter? — so we were in luck.

I present you with…

Blueberry Crumble Bars

1/2 c white sugar
1/2 c brown sugar
1 t baking powder
3 c all-purpose flour
1/4 t salt
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground nutmeg
1 c shortening – if you aren’t dairy free, use butter and it will taste even better
1 egg
1/2 t almond extract
4 c blueberries, fresh or frozen
1 orange, zested
1/2 c white sugar
1 T cornstarch

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 9×13 inch pan.

In a medium bowl, stir together 1/2 cup each brown and white sugar, 3 cups flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the shortening, almond extract and egg. The dough will be crumbly.

Pat half of dough into the prepared pan.

In another bowl, stir together the sugar and cornstarch. Gently mix in the blueberries. Add the orange zest, and mix again. Sprinkle the blueberry mixture evenly over the crust, then crumble remaining dough over the berry layer.

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Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes then turn up the heat to 400 degrees for the last 15 minutes, or until top is slightly brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

My husband, who claims to not like dairy free desserts, went for seconds while I was putting the wee ones to bed. His second square about about 3×3″. He pronounced it a winner, and Little Miss asked me to make it again. I think I will. Once summer in Chicago ends — assuming it ever starts!

It reminds me a lot of my mom’s blueberry streusel coffeecake without pretending to be something that’s for breakfast that I instead eat anytime I start getting hungry, whether it’s 8am or 9pm, once it’s made. I like that it’s lighter and more unique than a lot of the bar recipes I have.

And of course, as always go check out this week’s Tempt My Tummy Tuesday with Blessed With Grace!


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Wednesday 17th of June 2009

Angela - Ohhh you can make many of those items on the grill. Trust me. You'd be amazed at what the grill can do!

BPOTW - It is... in my humble opinion!

Gombojav Tribe - Ohhhh I hope it is for you. It's so good. If you try it, let me know what you think!

Gombojav Tribe

Tuesday 16th of June 2009

Yummy! I have blueberries at the moment. Maybe this is on the menu for later!


Sunday 14th of June 2009

That looks lovely and delish! Thanks for sharing.


Sunday 14th of June 2009

Fun! I love blueberry recipes. And I am still smiling at the idea that you never turn on your oven - at all! - during the summer. I just can't pass up some of my faves (cajun meat loaf, baked sweet potatoes, onion roasted potatoes...hmmm... potatoes of all kinds, it seems!) during the summer. But I am impressed at your ability to cook without it!



Wednesday 10th of June 2009

septembermom - Visit They are putting together a cookbook that is for kids and by kids. And yes, I have some recipes submitted there. For $20, you get the cookbook with ~800 recipes and I believe it's 80 pounds of food can be bought with the proceeds to feed hungry kids in Northern Illinois.

MaBunny - Mmmm blueberry buckle. Good idea!

Sherry - I'm with you. I actually looked up a place in Michigan last year, but ... we never made it. I still have the info, so maybe this year!

Debbie - Oh go for it. Our pan lasted three days. It was soooo good!

Jeff - Yep, the blueberry bars do help. The weather guy today made the comment that it's actually more typical of April right now than June. Downtown MAY hit 60 tomorrow. For the high.

Roxane - Go you! I hope they were good -- I love oatmeal raisin cookies.

Lisa - It must be that season! Mmmm, I have to go check out some.

Alisa - At this rate, I may not retire it all summer long!

Swishy - See the above comment. Nice to know you all like the recipes :)

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