An exclusive recipe competition brought to you by Berryfect
Last month, FoodeMag dxb held a recipe competition and our winner Roya Tarzaban gets to enjoy a Scandinavian Dinner for 10 people worth AED 2,200 prepared by Chef Marta Yanci & FOODIAC at her own home! This amazing competition was courtesy of Bilberry.ae, and the participants had to share their creative Bilberry and Blueberry recipes with us! Roya says about her recipe – ‘I used Bilberry powder and Blueberries in this recipe to create a delicious sweet and savoury fusion of Middle-Eastern and European flavours. The Bilberry powder was mixed with Arabic spices and used as a marinade for the lamb, while the blueberries were cooked to create a thick sauce to glaze and pour over the grilled lamb.’
Bilberries are often confused with the high bush blueberries that we commonly know, as the word bilberry translates into blueberry in many European languages. However bilberries (or forest blueberries) refer to those that grow naturally in Northern Finland, Norway, Sweden and some parts of Russia. In this recipe, Bilberry powder is added to yogurt and sour cream as a dressing that not only tastes wonderful, but adds a splash of violet colour and beauty to a salad. Read more about bilberries in our Ingredient section.
Cucumber and Bilberry Salad
- 1 bone-in rack of lamb (French-trimmed, and cut into 8 individual chops)
- ¼ cup pistachios
- 2 tsp 7-spice mix (a blend of allspice, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and rose buds)
- 1 tsp dried thyme (or 2 sprigs of fresh thyme leaves minced)
- 1 Bilberry packet*
- 1 garlic clove, finely minced 2 tbs red wine vinegar
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1 tbs sea salt
- 1 tsp fresh ground pepper
- 250 gms frozen blueberries (you may use fresh, with liquid and sweetness adjustments)
- 1 tbs butter
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tbs brown sugar
- 1 cup red wine (you may use non-alcoholic cooking wine. I used a combination of Port and Sherry for their sweetness)*
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
- ½ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp cornstarch and water slurry
Butternut Squash Purée:
- 500 gms butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 2 tbs butter
- 1 sprig of thyme
- 1 tsp salt
For the Lamb Chops:
- In a large bowl, whisk all the ingredients of the marinade together. Add the lamb chops, and mix to coat evenly. The chops will turn into a vibrant purple from the bilberries. Cover and let them marinate in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours.
- Heat up a small pan, and dry-toast the pistachios for a few minutes until fragrant. Set aside to cool and get crisp. Place in a pestle and mortar (or plastic bag) and crush some to get a combination of fine grains and medium pieces. Pour into a bowl and set aside.
- Meanwhile, prepare the compote and the puree.
- In a small, non-reactive pot over medium-low heat, add the butter, shallots, and sugar, and sweat until soft and they start to caramelize, about 5-8 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute.
- Add in the wine and bring to a simmer for a few minutes
- Add in the frozen blueberries, balsamic vinegar, salt, and thyme sprigs. The blueberries will release their water content. Bring the mixture to a low simmer, and cook for 15-20 minutes, crushing some of the blueberries along the way.
- When the sauce has reduced by half, add in the cornstarch slurry and cook for another minute until the sauce is thick and coats the back of a spoon.
- Turn off the heat, cover, and keep warm.
For the Butternut Squash Purée:
- Melt the butter with a sprig of thyme, and set aside to infuse.
- Steam the cubed squash for 8-10 minutes until fork tender.
- While still hot, pass the squash through a food mill or fine sieve over a glass bowl.
- Whip in the butter and salt, discarding the sprig of thyme. Keep warm.
Cooking the Lamb chops:
- Remove the lamb chops and pat dry, discarding any leftover marinade.
- Brush on some oil, and sprinkle with extra salt and pepper on each side.
- Heat a grill pan over high heat until almost smoking, add the chops and sear for about 3-4 minutes. Flip them over and cook for another 3-4 minutes. Cook to the desired doneness (for medium to medium-well, a thermometer inserted reads between 57ºC – 62ºC).
- Remove the lamb chops from the grill, brush with the warm blueberry glaze, and dip them into the crushed pistachios.
- Serve the lamp chops over the butternut squash puree, and top each chop with a generous helping of blueberry compote.
*The recipe uses Berryfect Bilberry powder.
Other recipes from this Recipe Competition
Berryfect is a premium berry powder, made from bilberries grown under the Northern Lights and the midnight sun in wild forests in Finland. Berryfect powders are ground from whole juicy Bilberries. All the Bilberry’s nutritionally dense parts: juice, pulp, skin and seeds are used. Berryfect is brought to the region by Nordic Power General Trading. Follow their visual journey on Instagram and search for the hashtag #berryfectme for violet superfood inspiration.
[This recipe has been provided exclusively for the FoodeMag recipe competition. We have also tried Berrfyfect Bilberry powder at FoodeMag kitchen. Recipe and Image: Roya Tarzaban]
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