A Solution for All Those BERRIES!

Kling Family OrchardsWhen I think of Kansas crops, I don’t often think of fruits and berries. But if you’ve ever visited any Kansas orchards, like Kling Family Orchards in Pittsburg, then you know that our State is blooming with pleasant surprises. Blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, oh my! Read on for some delicious blackberry jam recipes plus my Secret Weapon for entertaining on the fly!

Blackberry Cream Cheese Breakfast Pastries

Blackberry Cream Cheese Breakfast Pastry1 lb. Frozen Pepperidge Farms Puff Pastry Sheets, 2 sheets per box, thawed
1 cup low-sugar blueberry jam
4 oz. cream cheese
2 Tbs. granulated sugar
Smidge of kosher salt
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 Tbs. whipping cream
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1-2 Tbs. milk
1 egg beaten with 1 tsp. water to make an egg wash
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
In a small bowl, combine cream cheese with sugar, salt, almond and whipping cream; set aside.
Place 1 sheet of puff pastry onto a work surface; unfold and cut into quarters. Cut each quarter into 4 equal squares, repeating with remaining puff pastry to create 32 pastries. (Or, to make 2 elongated and larger pastries, cut a puff pastry sheet in half lengthwise and proceed as directed here for small pastries.)
Puff Pastry StepsUsing a paring knife, score each pastry square as shown. (Don’t cut all the way through the pastry; doing this really helps create an area for the filling to nestle in.)
Place about 1 tsp. prepared filling into the center of each puff pastry square. Top filling with a bit of jam, then use a toothpick to swirl the jam into the cream cheese, a bit. Using a pastry brush, brush a bit of the prepared egg wash around the edge of each pastry.
Bake, uncovered, on center rack for 14-16 minutes, or until golden brown and puffed. Remove from oven and allow to cool before drizzling with glaze.
To prepare glaze, combine powdered sugar with almond and just enough milk to reach desired consistently.

Blackberry Honey Bun Cake

Honey Bun Cake1 yellow cake mix
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/2 cup water
1 cup brown sugar
1 Tbs. cinnamon
1 cup low-sugar blueberry jam (see recipe below or use your favorite)
2 cups powdered sugar
Smidge of kosher salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup milk
In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, combine cake mix with sour cream, oil, eggs, and water; beat well for 2-3 minutes. Pour half of prepare batter into a greased 9 x 13 baking dish.
In a small bowl, combine brown sugar with cinnamon, then sprinkle half of this mixture over the cake batter in the baking dish. Using a spoon, place dollops of jam over the brown sugar mixture, then use a knife to swirl jam into the batter. Top with remaining half of batter, then sprinkle the remaining half of the brown sugar mixture over the top.
Bake cake, uncovered, in preheated oven on center rack for 25-30 minutes or until cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove cake from oven, drizzle with glaze, then cover cake with foil and let cool completely.
To prepare glaze, combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk until smooth.

Low-Sugar Blackberry Jam

Blackberry Jam4-5 cups fresh blackberries
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tsp. cornstarch combined with 1 Tbs. water to make a slurry
Combine blackberries with sugar and lemon zest and juice in a medium saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cooking until berries are softened and very cooked down. Stir in prepared slurry mixture and continue to simmer until nicely thickened. Cool. Store in fridge.

A Secret Weapon for Entertaining Stored Right in Your Freezer: Puff Pastry Sheets!

Puff Pastry Power- Keep it in your freezer for quick and beautiful entertaining anytime! #PepperidgeFarm

Puff Pastry Power- Keep it in your freezer for quick and beautiful entertaining anytime! #PepperidgeFarm

Keeping a box of puff pastry sheets in your freezer at all times is a super smart-girl thing to do. In a flash, you can create tender desserts and savory appetizers that give the impression you’ve slaved away in the kitchen for DAYS! Just pair those puff pastries with your own berries or farmer’s market jams!

Puff Pastry Tips:

  1. Due to its high fat content, puff pastry thaws very quickly. Pull that box out of the freezer and unwrap the pastry sheets (there’s two per 1 lb. box), placing them at room temp on your counter. In about 20 minutes, they’ll be thawed and ready to use.
  1. So what makes puff pastry “puffy”? Butter! Puff pastry is loaded with butter and as it bakes, all the little pockets of butter create steam, causing the pastry to puff and become super delicate layers of goodness. 🙂
  1. Bake puff pastry delicacies at a high temperature (375 – 400 degrees F) for a quick, golden brown experience. Whether sweet or savory, you can have a puff pastry treat/appetizer ready in as little as 15-20 minutes!

Now You’re Cookin’,
Chef Alli 

**These recipes were featured on Chef Alli’s Farm Fresh Kitchen with From the Land of Kansas, as part of WIBW 13 News This Morning, July 2016. To order your favorite From the Land of Kansas products and ingredients, visit our new ecommerce site!

Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored post.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via a cash payment, gift, or something else of value to write it. It may also contain “affiliate links”. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Chef Alli

Chef Alli is a home-grown Kansas girl on a mission to strengthen families through enabling kitchen confidence, educating the family cook, and encouraging better food relationships. She believes with her whole heart that time spent with our loved ones and our overall quality of life is greatly enhanced by nutritious food made at home with simple, wholesome ingredients. She loves being able to connect and share this passion with others through her website, her social media presence, and her coveted speaking engagements.

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