Old Fashioned Blueberry Fool Dessert Recipe – Postcards from Maine – Beech Hill Preserve

Every morning at breakfast we would discuss where we should go and what we should do that day.  While placing something fresh from the oven on the table, our hostess would always have a great suggestion..usually followed by a welcomed brochure.

One morning was especially beautiful and we decided to go to the Beech Hill Preserve, a conservation property owned by the Coastal Mountains Land Trust located close by in Rockport.    Our goal was to hike up the trail to the summit where we would find the romantic stone “tea house”, named Beech Nut.  Along the way, we hoped to see some special birds (Beech Hill is known to have over 100 species) and admire the large fields of wild  blueberries…the small, sweet kind found only in Maine.

As soon as we got on the trail, we spied a sign identifying the native Wood Lily.  We were told that when these lilies appear in the fields, the blueberries are ready to pick.  We searched and found one!  OK, we see the lily, but where are the blueberries?

We were almost at the summit, and still no sign of them….then something on the ground caught my eye…was it…yes, yes, it was.  Right there were very low growing blueberry bushes, not the sturdy tall variety I was used to seeing.  We’d been walking by them all along and our eyes were focused up and not down.  Now that we knew where to look,  they sprinkled the hillside like fairy dust.

Beech Nut looks like an enchanted cottage…could someone inside be spinning straw into gold?  It was designed by Norwegian landscape designer, Hans O. Heistad and built in the early 1900’s out of stone with a sod roof in keeping with Norwegian tradition.  The Gribbell family of Philadelphia who developed Beech Hill,  used to meander up the curving trail in their buggy,  admiring the scenery and carrying  picnic hampers groaning with all of the trappings of a fine Victorian tea.

After their journey,  they would have their tea overlooking the wonderful panoramic views of the Camden Hills, Penobscot Bay and the St. George Peninsula.

At Beech Hill you are asked to stay on the trail and not to pick the blueberries or the lilies, this land is dedicated to conserving not indulging.  There is one day a year (this year, it’s TODAY) that you can go up and pick the tiny, blue treasures.  So, if you’re in the neighborhood….

I thought that it might be fun to have an “old timey” dessert for family and friends for this week’s Sunday Supper…something that they might have served at high tea at the top of that hill on warm summer afternoons.

On a dusty shelf in an old antique shop I found a well worn copy of The American Heritage Cookbook.  This book is filled with time honored recipes of the past; such a grunts, fools and flummery.  By now, you probably know that I’m drawn to simple, tasty recipes.  I chose to adapt this one, and I’m glad I did.  It has a light, fluffy, fruity taste with a hint of lemon.

Oh, and you top it with crumbled macaroons (not to be confused with French macarons).  I found these almond macaroons at my local bakery, but if you can’t find them your way, you could use crumbled sugar cookies.  I added fresh blueberries as well for another texture to enjoy.


Old Fashioned Blueberry Fool Dessert Recipe

Yield: 6 servings

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

A light, fluffy, fruity dessert that is perfect for a hot summer evening.


2 pints fresh blueberries, reserving a few as garnish
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup crumbled macaroons (or sugar cookies)


Rinse berries (keeping a few for the garnish) add remainder to saucepan with 1/4 cup of water. Let simmer over low heat for about 20 minutes or till the fruit is very tender. Remove from the heat and place in a strainer over a bowl. Work the berries through the strainer with a spoon. While the fruit puree is still warm, stir in the sugar and the lemon zest. Place mixture in the fridge to cool.

Now you are going to whip the cream and fold it into the fruit puree. I like to place my bowl and the beaters that I'll be using in the freezer to chill. Using chilled bowl and beaters, add heavy cream and whip cream till it forms soft peaks.

Remove the fruit puree from the fridge and whisk mixture a bit to loosen it (it will be slightly jelled). Then fold in the whipped cream. Spoon into serving bowls and place in fridge till you are ready to serve.

When ready to serve, sprinkle crumbled cookies and blueberries on top.



10 Responses to “Old Fashioned Blueberry Fool Dessert Recipe – Postcards from Maine – Beech Hill Preserve”

  1. 1

    Carol Sacks — Monday, August 6, 2012 @ 7:16 am

    Wow, Susie! I read this post and wanted to close my eyes and then open them and find myself sitting outside Beechnut Cottage so I could take in those views. Such glorious photos!

    • Susie replied: — August 12th, 2012 @ 2:37 pm

      I wish that I was sitting there right now as well!

  2. 2

    juleee — Monday, August 6, 2012 @ 6:59 pm

    Yum Susie! Sounds delish — and beautiful pictures as usual.

    Just got back from BlogHer12 in New York which I really enjoyed. BlogHer13 is in Chicago next July!

    • Susie replied: — August 12th, 2012 @ 2:37 pm

      Oh, that’s terrific…I hope that I will get to see you again!

  3. 3

    Nerissa — Tuesday, August 7, 2012 @ 2:21 am

    The fool looks awesome :) I’ve tried strawberry fool and rhubarb fool but I think blueberry would be just the ticket for me. :) Especially with macaroons mmm…

    • Susie replied: — August 12th, 2012 @ 2:40 pm

      Yes, you can use any berry/fruit that you’d like for this dish. Thanks for your comment!

  4. 4

    Jamie — Sunday, August 12, 2012 @ 9:37 am

    I don’t know where to start! Beech Hill is just our kind of vacation spot! Gorgeous, really stunningly gorgeous! We love hiking through spots like this. Your photos are beautiful. And this blueberry fool is wonderful Great recipe that I imagine can be done with so many kinds of summer fruits or berries.

    • Susie replied: — August 12th, 2012 @ 2:36 pm

      Thanks so much for your comment! Yes, you can use any berry that you would like. Maine is one of our favorite spots, so darn beautiful!

  5. 5

    Emily — Monday, April 15, 2013 @ 2:56 pm

    I just stumbled upon your site today and I cannot wait to try so many of your recipes!!

    The lilies you have pictured above grow wild along the roads here where I live/grew up. I love them. We also have some planted in front of our house, along with other types of lilies. They are so beautiful! I never knew about the connection to picking blueberries… I will need to check to see if that is true for this area as well! Very good to know!

    • Susie replied: — April 20th, 2013 @ 8:35 pm

      Thanks so much for your comment! The lilies in Maine look quite a bit like the daylily which grows here in the Midwest. I agree, it would be interesting to see if they are related and if the lilies here are an indicator that perhaps a local berry is ready for picking.

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