Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Grammy's Blueberry Newtons

A little over a week ago, while I was SKYPING with Ari, I told him I was sending a package and I would make some cookies to go in it.  "What kind would you like?" I asked him.  The King said, "Blueberry!"  I didn't have time to do some experimenting before getting the package out, so I sent him some Spice Cookies and promised I would come up with a blueberry cookie that he would love.

Today, I made, what I'm calling, Blueberry Newtons.  I started with dried blueberries, with their intense, concentrated flavor, added some CheriRaisins and soaked them both for several hours in warmed apple cider to plump them up.  To me, these newtons taste like blueberry pie wrapped in a cookie!

Hopefully, this time next year I'll be living closer to our grandchildren and I won't have to send their goodies in a box.  When our daughters visited my parent's home, my Mom always fixed them a "goodie bag" to go home with; candy, gum, cookies, etc.  They looked forward to these treats and I wouldn't have denied the look on their faces getting their "booty" or my Mom giving it.  As I look back it was more than the treats, it was this special bond that was forming between them.  Kelly told me, when she had Ari, that she would allow me to do the same thing because she believed it was an important rite of passage that grandparents get to do.  I love being a Grammy and I told my husband the other day, "who would have guessed my greatest fan club would be under three feet tall!"

Blueberry Newtons


3/4 c apple cider, heated
1 1/4 c dried blueberries
1/2 c  CheriRaisins
1/3 c blueberry jam (preferably homemade)


2 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c granulated sugar
3 T golden brown sugar, packed
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 c (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter 
2 eggs
1/3 c milk
2 tsp. vanilla

1-2 T milk
1/4 c Turbinado Sugar

In a medium bowl, place the blueberries and CheriRaisins, then pour the warmed cider.  Cover with plastic wrap and let set 2-3 hours (or overnight).

Meanwhile mix up the dough.  In a food processor, place all the dry ingredients and pulse a couple of times to incorporate.  Cut the cold butter into 1-inch pieces.
Place in the bowl of the food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse sand.
Mix the wet ingredients together (eggs, milk and vanilla) and whisk to blend.  Add to the flour/butter mixture and pulse until the dough comes together.  Be careful not to overwork the dough.

Turn out onto a pastry board and knead slightly to form into a ball.  Divide the ball in half into two equal disks.  Wrap with plastic wrap and chill 2-3 hours.
After at least 2-3 hours, strain the blueberry/CheriRaisin mixture and place the fruit in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse until a paste is formed.  Use a spatula to scrape the paste into a bowl and add the 1/3 cup of blueberry jam.  Stir to combine.

Preheat oven to 400F-degrees.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Lightly flour a pastry board and roll out one disk of dough to a 9" x 11" rectangle.  Use a ruler to get the measurement exact.

Divide the dough in half, horizontally into two 41/2" x 11" strips.  Place one-quarter of the filling down the center of the dough.
Bring the top half over and roll the whole strip towards you, ending with the seam underneath.

Cut the roll in half; continue to cut and divide, getting 8 pieces out of each half.  Brush the tops of the cookies with milk and sprinkle with the Turbinado Sugar.
 Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.  Let set on parchment-lined baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack to cool completely.  Repeat with the remaining dough.

One last note.  After Ari opened the package I sent him last week, he climbed into a large basket.  When his Daddy asked him what he was doing, he promptly said, "I go to MiMi's house!"  I love that he gets the concept of shipping something special to ones you love.  Enjoy!


  1. Susan,
    I keep up with your blog regularly but this is my first time to comment. I knew Kelly from CSU and Matt and Ari stayed with us at the start of their recent Colorado visit. You are keeping Kelly alive for me and I know Ari will love these blueberry treats. I am always inspired by your recipes and the anecdotes that accompany them. Thank you for continuing to share your life with us.
    ~Cat Ackerson Bendl

  2. Thank you Cat. I love the photos of Ari playing with your girls and it's nice to "meet" you, even though I feel I know you through Kelly.

    ...and Matt-Good, because a box should arrive tomorrow and you & Ari can do a taste test to see if I got the blueberry right|:D

  3. Susan these look delicious! I am adding to the stack of your recipes I have printed that I need to try!!

  4. Oh, Susan as always these look great! I have tried something similar in a raspberry flavor for shhh (breakfast!) : ) What a lucky little guy you have getting such sweetness in the mail from his loving Grammie, of course he is pretty sweet himself! Ps...we will be making your 'eggplant balls' this Sunday for dinner!) Sending love xo

  5. I love the idea of the package of treats to go home with the kids. My mom used to do the same thing with my nephews. They would call them care packages. :) That is such a great memory because they would always go up to her before they left and say, "Grandma, do you have a care package for me?" :)
    These cookies look so great! I can't wait to try them.

  6. Molly, it's funny you mentioned care packages. When my Mom passed away, I sent care packages to my Dad. I'd address the box to "My Dad" and place a number by the words--#1 Care Package. The staff at the little post office where my Dad received his mail always wanted him to open the package there, as if they were part of the experience. It gave my Dad a chuckle and let him know I was still going to spoil him like Mom had done all of us. Thank you for sharing your experience. I love hearing about them. |:D

  7. How did you dry the blueberries? I used to have a dehydrator w multiple trays, but it is "lost" in the garage. Have you dehydrated with convection oven? Looks scrumptious (as always)-Louise

  8. I actually buy the dried blueberries at Costco! Believe it or not, I don't own a dehydrator:)

  9. Thank you , Sister, for my "care package" with the wonderful Blueberry Newtons, the Amazing yarn and a new gadget! Libby (who I'm sure was waiting for the mailman!), Dick and I enjoyed the Newtons with a cup of coffee this afternoon. Our kids also looked forward to the "goodie bags" that Mom fixed for them and I do the same for our grand children when they go home after a visit. Love & Hugs, Barb

  10. Yeah, I hear Sarah Jean got a jar of Triple Berry Jam in her goodie bag when she went home in August|:D

  11. These look great! I'm sure they were yummy. I'll bet Ari was delighted with the treat.

  12. Wow! Susan these look scrumptious. Like Ari, I love blueberries. With the taste of fat summer berries a thing of sweet memories, this recipe will definitely be on my "Susan's Recipes to Try" list. :D
    Love and hugs, -mary