Blueberries, bears and hornets

DEFINITELY DELICIOUS – Fresh Blueberry Pie

By TERRI WINDOVER, Connect Columnist

Blueberry bushes grow around Grist Lake, Alberta. The area is popular to outdoor enthusiasts - like Terri Windover, who is also a great blueberry pie baker. PHOTO: Terri Windover, Connect Weekly.

Blueberry bushes grow around Grist Lake, Alberta. The area is popular to outdoor enthusiasts – like Terri Windover, who is also a great blueberry pie baker. PHOTO: Terri Windover, Connect Weekly.

Blueberries are the only fruit that I would literally fight hornets and bears for. I’ve spent the last five weekends at our camp on Grist Lake, where I have picked an amazing amount of berries and fruit – rose hips, pin cherries, low bush cranberries and, of course, the king of all berries – Mr. Blueberry. Mix that up with some seriously great fishing, quadding and fireside margaritas and I can say that this summer has been one of my favourites.

While out on the quad trails (or in the swamp, depending on my mood) I have come across a lot of signs of bears nearby. The berries are plentiful and so are the bears. Sometimes, I would go off by myself and pick.

My theory is: if I leave the bears alone, they will leave me alone… I’ll let you know how that works out. As for the hornets – they’re awful this year, as the early hot and dry summer made them breed in epic numbers. I am deathly allergic to bees, so I assume I was also allergic to their nasty cousins.

After four, (you heard me – FOUR stings) I can definitely say I’m not. I may have cried like a two year old after the first sting thinking I was going to die in the middle of the bush. But there’s no video, so I shall deny it until my deathbed. Now after the fourth, which happened after one flew down the front of my shirt, while quadding I’m like: “That’s all you’ve got?”

All camp stories aside, here’s my favourite blueberry pie recipe. I only make this recipe a couple times in the summer, as I believe its best with fresh berries. I’m a blueberry snob and refuse to use store-bought ones.

Fresh Blueberry Pie
Ingredients:
1 baked 9-inch pie shell
4 cups fresh blueberries
1 cup sugar
3 tbsp. corn starch
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup water
1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. lemon zest (Optional)

Instructions:
1. Place one cup of blueberries in sauce pan.
2. Chill remaining blueberries in fridge.
3. Add sugar, water, corn starch and salt to sauce pan.
4. Cook over low heat, until clear.
5. Remove from heat and add butter. When butter has melted – add berries, and mix well.
6. Cool combined mixture for 1/2 hour and pour into pie shell.
7. Let stand until set.

This one is a keeper trust me. And make sure you take the time to add the lemon zest – NOT lemon juice. It’s worth the effort. For more recipes, nutrition and workout tips follow me or send me a message!
Terri Windover is a local personal fitness instructor and business owner of Define Fit. She provides meal planning and personalized work-out routines for her clients. Instagram/Facebook: @terriwindover & online: www.definefit.trainerize.com.

– Connect Weekly-