For the Love of Huckleberries (and Grandma)
One of my fondest memories of a childhood spent in West Marin is picking huckleberries and making my Grandmother’s Huckleberry Tart – one of the most delicious things I have ever tasted! She is lucky she had many grandchildren, because huckleberries are tiny and picking the 4 cups needed for the tart is quite an endeavor! Here’s a little bit about the process…
Spending time in the majestic forests of Inverness is half the fun…
Prepare to eat most of your harvest right off the bush!
Definitely choose your company wisely…you will be out there for hours! My brother Jason always cracks me up…
It’s very handy to have a basket or tub to go over your neck for hands free picking!
Once you have your harvest, rinse and spread out on paper towels to dry.
Huckleberries freeze well. First, freeze them on a baking tray (like above) for a few hours, then you can put them in a large freezer bag. It’s always an incredible joy to remember a little of the late summer during the middle of winter!
Let the baking begin…
And now for the recipe…luckily, it couldn’t be easier (once you actually pick all the berries!)
A few chef notes…
– Coat your tart tin with butter or spray. I also like to line the bottom of the tin with parchment, so the tarts pop right out. I’ve used mini tartlet tins and full size tart tins – both are great, although baking times vary!
– I make the crust in my Quisinart – pulse the ingredients and then press into the prepared tin.
– I’m not sure what the vinegar is for – I have tried substituting almond milk for the vinegar and I preferred the taste. The texture of the crust was still perfect.
– You will need about 4 cups of berries – 2 cups for the filling and 2 cups to put on top of the filling, once it comes out of the oven. The taste and texture differences between the cooked and fresh huckleberries is one of the greatest things about this tart.
– Make sure to share with friends and neighbors – this tart is truly something to behold!
In honor of Norma Wells – we all miss you!