Blueberry Streusel Kuchen

BlueberryK-S (12) I had some beautiful farm market blueberries and decided to go to my favorite kuchen recipe which is adapted from a German version.  The original recipe called for quark, but I used ricotta.  Sour cream or yogurt will also work fine.  The cake base is covered with an easy, cooked blueberry sauce …. BlueberryK-S (8) …and topped with a delicious streusel … BlueberryK-S (10) This makes a lovely breakfast or dessert cake, served warm or room temperature.


Blueberry topping

  • 1-1/2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. cornstarch
  • 2 tsp. water
  • 1 tsp. vanilla


  • 3 Tblsp. canola oil
  • 3 Tblsp. ricotta cheese, yogurt or sour cream
  • 3 Tblsp. milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 cup plus
  • 2 Tblsp. all-purpose flour


  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tblsp. light brown sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp. butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray or grease an 8-inch baking pan

To make blueberry topping: In a medium saucepan, place blueberries, granulated sugar, cornstarch and water.  Cook over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until sugar and cornstarch are dissolved and mixture just begins to bubble.  Remove from heat – stir in vanilla.   Set aside.

To make kuchen: In a medium bowl, place the oil, ricotta/sour cream, milk, sugar, salt and baking powder.  Whisk until blended.  Stir in flour just until mixed well.  Batter will be thick – spread batter in prepared 8-inch pan, using fingertips dampened with water to push the batter in place.

To make streusel: In a small bowl, mix together the flour, brown sugar and granulated sugar.  Mix in the butter until mixture is blended. Spread the reserved blueberry mixture on top of the batter and then cover with streusel. Bake @ 350 degrees F for approximately 30 minutes until cake is browned on edges and beginning to brown on top. Serve warm or room temperature.  Yield:  6 servings

BlueberryK-S (1)

Collectibles of the Week–Time to Make Concord Grape Pie


I  have so many wonderful collectibles acquired over the last 80+ years.  Some were gifts, some were part of my life growing up, some were inherited, some were purchased at antique malls, gift shops or thrift stores  – all are precious to me.  Some items are kept up year-around while others are brought out seasonally and on holidays.  Unfortunately, many priceless-to-me objects go undisplayed and unseen for years, so each week, I’m going to pull out an item and post a COLLECTIBLE OF THE WEEK.

Once a year, if I’m lucky, I find Concord grapes at a farm market and make Streusel Concord Grape Pie.  It’s probably my favorite pie and I get out my vintage pie-baking utensils to make it.

There’s a little bit of work involved, including putting the cooked grape pulp through a food mill ….


The dough is rolled out with a one-piece rolling pin my mother gave me over 40 years ago.


I use a pie pan that my toddler children gave me for Christmas in 1956 after they carefully saved up enough Wilson evaporated milk labels to get it.


Actually, I don’t use the pastry blender at all but have it among my collection of depression-green handled utensils.  I once heard Alton Brown, TV food expert, say that mixing with the hands provided exactly the right amount of warmth for making good pastry and that’s the way my grandmothers, mother and I had been doing it all along.


I used my vintage kitchen items to make a Streusel Concord Grape Pie on this past Sunday and it’s still my favorite.



If you’re fortunate enough to find some Concord grapes and don’t mind spending a little time peeling them, here is my recipe.

Walnut Streusel Coffeecake

This recipe makes a nice nine-inch cake that is big enough for a family breakfast (leftovers are good, too).


  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 vegetable oil
  • 1 Tblsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour


  • 1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 3 Tblsp. melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Oil a 9-inch baking pan

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg, sugar and oil.  Whisk in the baking powder and salt, then the milk.  Stir in the flour just until blended.

Pour into the prepared 9-inch baking pan.

To make the Streusel:  In a small bowl, stir together nuts, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon.  With a fork, mix in the melted butter.

Sprinkle the Streusel on top of the batter in the pan.  Bake @ 350 degrees  F for approximately 30 minutes until top is golden brown and a tester comes out clean when inserted in the center of the cake.

Set on a wire rack to cool.

Serve warm or at room temperature. 

Fresh Peach Crumble Pie

I’ve been traveling a bit – peach-wise – the past couple of weeks.   I’ve had South Carolina Peaches, I’m waiting on the Georgia Peaches, and this week my farm market had Ohio grown peaches.  This recipe is a combination of a favorite filling and a favorite streusel topping plus my all-time favorite pie crust.  It’s a perfect dessert for a summer day.


  • Pastry for a 9″single crust pie, unbaked (click here for my favorite recipe)


  • 4 cups sliced fresh peaches
  • 1/4 cup Minute Tapioca
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tblsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp. almond extract

Crumble Topping:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 Tblsp. butter, cut into small cubes

Preheat oven @ 375 degrees F

In a large bowl, combine peaches, tapioca, salt, sugar, lemon juice and almond extract.  Set aside.

In a small bowl, combine topping ingredients:  flour, sugar and butter.  Set aside.

Stir peaches and pour into pastry lined 9″ pie pan.  Spoon crumble topping on, covering all of the top surface of peaches.

Place on a flat pan to catch spills and bake @ 375 degrees F for approximately 45 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack.

Best served after cooling to room temperature.  Servings:  6 to 8 

Kyoho Grape Pie

I was surprised to see a big sign in my grocery store – CONCORD GRAPES.  Looking at the label on the box, I saw they were from Chile, which would explain having them out-of-season for our American Concords.  I also saw the name KYOHO and when I “googled” it, found it is a “Concord-like cross between Campbell and Centennial grape varieties”, originating in Japan.  I tasted one, expecting it to be quite tart as our Concords are and found it to be fairly sweet with a slight hint of the Concord grape flavor.  I had intended to bake my favorite Concord Grape Pie and proceeded with just a couple of changes to compensate for the sweetness – a lot less sugar and a little more lemon juice.

I was happy to find out the pie tasted like my old favorite and even bubbled up in the pan in the same irritating way.


  • Unbaked 9″ pie shell
  • 4-1/2 cups Kyoho grapes
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Streusel Topping

  • 1/2 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, cut into small cubes

Mix together the oatmeal, brown sugar and flour.  Work the butter into the oatmeal mixture until well distributed.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

To make the filling: Wash grapes and remove skins.  Reserve skins in a large bowl.

Place the pulp and seeds in a small saucepan and bring to a boil; cook several minutes until pulp is soft.  Put through a strainer or food mill while pulp is still hot.  Discard seeds and pulp that remain in the mill/strainer.

Add the strained juice and pulp to the bowl with the reserved skins.  Stir in the sugar, flour, lemon juice and salt.

Place the filling in the pastry-lined 9″ pan.  Sprinkle on the Streusel Topping.  Place pie pan on a large flat pan or cookie sheet to catch spills.  Bake @ 375 degrees F for approximately 45 minutes.  Remove pie pan to a wire rack to cool. 

Note:  Removing the skins is not difficult – takes about 15 minutes.  A word of caution, if you don’t have a food mill, removing the seeds with a strainer is labor-intensive and takes some time.  I think it’s worth all the work – the flavor of the grapes is wonderful.

My recipe for pie-crust is here.

Old Fashioned Plum Streusel Pie


Purple plums are readily available and make a delicious pie.  Since the plums only need to have the pits removed and don’t have to be peeled, they are an easy fruit to work with and produce outstanding results.  This was our dessert today for Sunday dinner.


  • 4 cups sliced, unpeeled purple plums
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon peel
  • One 9 inch unbaked pie shell


  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 3 Tblsp. cold butter or margarine

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

In a large bowl combine the plums, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour, salt, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, lemon juice and lemon peel.  Toss to mix and let stand for a few minutes to blend.

Place the fruit in an unbaked 9″ pie shell.  Mix the topping ingredients together, cutting in the butter/margarine, and sprinkle the streusel topping evenly over the top of the fruit.

Place the pie on a large flat pan or cookie sheet to catch spills and bake @ 375 degrees F for approximately 45 minutes.  Cool on a rack.



Concord Grape Pie with Streusel Topping


About 20 years ago, this pie won a ribbon at a large pie contest at the Hamilton County Fair (Cincinnati, Ohio).  This was when we lived on a couple of acres in a rural area and I had large 5-gallon buckets of Concord grapes setting all over my kitchen.  I made as much jam and jelly as I needed, then made this pie.  If there were still grapes left, I would make the filling and put it in the freezer for later use.  Eventually, the grapes were wiped out by some disease and ever since I’ve searched the produce aisles and farm markets of the area for Concord grapes, with no luck.  Last week, I was amazed to see plastic containers of these wonderful grapes in my grocery store.  I couldn’t wait to make another pie for our Sunday dinner.

My best memory of this pie is taking it to a large square dance federation potluck dinner party where normally the buffet line led through the entrees, salads, etc., and then after eating the meal, the guests would go to the dessert table.  In this case, 8 men went directly to the dessert table and cleaned out the grape pie.


Unbaked 9″ pie shell

4-1/2 cups Concord grapes

1 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup flour

2 tsp. lemon juice

1/8 tsp. salt

Oat Streusel:  Combine 1/2 cup quick-cooking oats, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1/4 cup flour.  Cut in 1/4 cup butter to distribute evenly.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Wash grapes and remove skins by pinching at end opposite stem.  Place pulp in a small saucepan and bring to a boil; cook several minutes until pulp is soft.  Put through strainer or food mill while pulp is hot to remove seeds.

Mix strained pulp with skins.  Stir in sugar, flour, lemon juice and salt.  Place grape mixture in pastry-lined 9″ pie pan.  Sprinkle on Oat Streusel.  Place on large flat pan or cookie sheet to catch spills.  Bake @ 375 degrees F for approximately 45 minutes.  Cool on rack.

Note:  Removing the skins from the grapes takes about 15 minutes but is not difficult or overly messy.  A word of caution – if you don’t have a food mill, removing the seeds with a strainer is labor-intensive.  It’s worth all the work to me – the flavor of the grapes is unbelievable.