2018 Sudbury Blueberry Festival Holds Blueberry Buns Contest
Toronto Blueberry Buns

You can win prizes by creating your own Blueberry Buns. The contest will take place at The Market on July 21st.

We all love blueberry pie, muffins, tarts, perogies etc., but how many of you have heard of or tasted Blueberry Buns, a blueberry filled pastry, rich and decadently delicious, a treat once sampled not forgotten?

For decades Sudbury Blueberries have been sent to Southern Ontario, by all manner of transportation, trains, trucks and private vehicles and have contributed to our local economy in no small measure each summer. For some families, especially during depression years it was a main source of income and even now provides extra dollars for those willing to spend hours out in the many blueberry patches in our area.

The earliest recorded data we could find was from 1933. The blueberry crop that year yielded 4,500 baskets a day worth $5,000. By the end of the season 94,248 baskets of blueberries had been shipped to Toronto.

What happened to all of those northern blueberries once they arrived in communities to the south? We have discovered one little know treat enjoyed in the Toronto Jewish community for many decades in the mid portion the last century – they were called Toronto Blueberry Buns – a delicious treat fondly remembered by many from that period by now largely forgotten.

Now, for this edition of the Sudbury Blueberry Festival we are calling on local cooks to recreate these tasty confections using, of course as in the past, our native wild blueberries.

There is definitely an art to culinary endeavours and the Sudbury Arts Council will be awarding prizes for the best Blueberry Buns (appearance and taste) submitted for judging at 10 o’clock on Saturday July 21st at the Sudbury Market as part of the annual Blueberry Bash. There is no cost to enter the contest and participants can make available the remaining buns to those in attendance. Those entering should bring their buns to the market by 9:30. Judges will be from the Sudbury Arts Council and all decisions will be final and eaten.

The basic recipe is attached and can of course be modified by Sudbury bakers at their discretion, but the modified recipe must be submitted together with the buns. Let the baking begin!

John Lindsay,
Chair, Sudbury Blueberry Festival 705-507-6037

PS: Join us on Tuesday July 10th at the Market (Elgin Street) at 11.00 a.m. for Introduction of the Sud-berry Bears and the event’s activity lineup for the 33rd annual Blueberry Festival which takes place throughout all of Greater Sudbury from July 15th to 22nd. For further information contact: Katlyn Kotila at 705-674-5115 or sudbluefes@gmail.com or visit our website www.blueberryfestival.ca or Facebook page.

Shtritzlach (Toronto Blueberry Buns)

For dough:

1 package active dry yeast 1/2 cup warm water
3 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 tbsp. vegetable shortening
2 eggs
1/2 tsp. vanilla

For filling:

2 cups fresh or thawed frozen blueberries 1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp. corn starch dissolved in 1/4 cup water 1/4 tsp. salt
1 beaten egg plus 1 tsp. water for egg wash sugar for sprinkling

Instructions:

1. In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let stand until mixture begins to bubble, about 5 minutes.

2. Sift together flour, sugar and salt. Place in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add shortening, yeast and water, eggs and vanilla and beat until dough is smooth. Let stand while preparing filling.

3. Mix filling ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat and let cool.

4. On a well-floured surface, roll out dough to 1/8 – inch thickness. Add flour whenever dough threatens to stick. Cut dough into pieces 5 inches square. Place 1 tbsp. of filling in center of square, then fold dough over on top and pinch ends to close. Cover buns with a towel and let stand 30 minutes.

5. Preheat oven to 375°F. Brush buns with egg wash and sprinkle tops with sugar. Bake until browned, about 16 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 8 buns or double recipe for 16 to share more with family and friends.

Note: If you make changes to the recipe please indicate when you bring your baked buns to be judged.

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