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Ah, buttermilk!  This has been a buttermilk summer.  We’ve had it in ice cream, panna cotta, dressings, marinades, baked goods, and much more, and I haven’t yet tired of it.

Possibly the only thing better than buttermilk alone is buttermilk plus blueberries, and we’ve gotten plenty of those too–bumper crop this year.  Ah, buttermilk!  Ah, blueberries!  Ah, summer!
 
 
Click here to read Buttermilk Makes Everything Taste Better at NPR’s Kitchen Window.

The pictured recipe for Buttermilk Ice Cream comes originally from Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones, the cookbook from the legendary Bi-Rite Creamery in San Francisco.  You can get a full analysis and read a full review of the book on CookShelf, the cookbook-rating app, available for both  iPhone/iPad and Android devices.

It must have been seven or eight years ago that we planted the blueberry bushes, back when the garden was still just a passel of herbs and some flagstones. We didn’t really know what we were doing, but we dug generous holes and fed the blueberries compost and, sometimes, coffee grounds.

Over the years, the blueberries would come and go–a peck, a pint, a quart. We lost many to birds and bears until we learned to cover them with netting. Meanwhile the garden grew, and the fence hopped over the blueberries, enclosing them.

The kids grew too, and played under the netting when the blueberries ripened, eating till they could eat no more. Violets seemed to thrive under the blueberries, and they kept the grass down, so every time I found some in the garden, I moved them beneath the bushes.

Yesterday, having returned from a few days away, I went out, banging the empty strainer against my knee, to see what there was. Half an hour, I was still there, picking with both hands.

My son and I gorged on blueberries, but we could not eat them all. Fortunately, it happens that my next assignment is…a baking book. I think I know where those blueberries will end up.

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