A Summer-Sweet Taste of Maine

Dianne Dillman, for the Shuttle

I’m spending July in Maine, and am cooking local. In the latter part of the month, tiny wild blueberries start to appear at roadside farmers markets. These intensely sweet, deep purple fruits are grown on low bushes and must be harvested by hand. Easily bruised, they cannot be shipped fresh far from home. They have half the sugar of their larger cousins and twice as much fiber and anthocyanin, the powerful antioxidant that makes them so purple.

Sweet and nutty spelt is an ancient form of wheat which some find more digestible than modern whole wheat. Maine grown and readily available, it’s my go-to flour for scones and pancakes.

But you don’t need to drive 10 hours to make my scones. Just go to your nearest Weavers Way location, where you’ll find Wymans wild blueberries in the freezer section year round. and spelt in the bulk flour section. Feel free to substitute whole wheat flour for spelt or to adjust the ratio of spelt to all-purpose flour, but keep the total flour at two cups. And don’t thaw the berries or they will stain the dough flaming purple.

In Maine, I can shop at the Rising Tide Co-op (Damariscotta) and Belfast Co-op in Belfast. It was really cool to learn my Weavers Way membership makes me an honorary member of both.

Maine Spelt and Wild Blueberry Scones

  • 1 large egg
  • 2/3 cup cold heavy cream
  • 2/3 cup spelt flour
  • 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon raw sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 Tablespoons very cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 3/4 cup frozen Maine wild blueberries or 1 cup of fresh New Jersey blueberries
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, optional
  • 1 tablespoon raw sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 400°.

In a measuring cup, mix the egg and heavy cream with a fork until fully combined.

In a large bowl, whisk the flours, sugars, baking powder and salt.

Using your fingers, toss the cold cubes of butter in the flour mixture to coat. Quickly, rub the flour mixture until it is pebbly, with pieces of butter ranging in size from peas to flakes.

Pour the cream mixture over the flour and stir lightly with a fork. Before fully combined, sprinkle the zest and blueberries over the dough and continue combining until you have a wet, sticky dough. Gently knead or turn over with spatula in the bowl 8 to 10 times.

Mix the raw plain sugar and cinnamon in a small dish; set aside.

Lightly dust a board or table. Turn the dough out onto the floured surface and pat the dough into a nine-inch circle. Rub the top with a little extra cream and sprinkle on the cinnamon sugar mix. Cut into six or eight scones and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until nicely colored and firm. Cool for 10 minutes before devouring!