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Blueberry. Preserved Lemon. Licorice. Basil. {vegan, gluten-free, raw}

September 14, 2017

Food is often of a time and place.  Even if you don't remember what you had, you always remember how you felt or where you were in your life.  The best summer I ever had was in mid-coast Maine.  I challenged myself to create a this experience in one bite.  Summer is blueberry season in Maine and the coast is filled with wonderfully salty, crisp air.  The soft scent of pine wafts by on afternoon breezes.  This spoon is filled with a blueberry sphere, surrounded with a gentle licorice juice and topped with preserved lemon and micro basil.  Tart, sweet blueberries fresh from the fields, salty preserved lemon, accented by woody licorice and a fresh minty punch of green basil.  This is what summer in mid-coast Maine tastes like to me.  I offer not so much a recipe as a memory.  I used reverse spherification with blueberry juice but you can make a simple blueberry sorbet or granita and serve small scoops.  I hope you feel inspired to make something like it and create your own sweet memories.  Let me know what you make and how it turns out. Tag a photo at #theverdantplate on Instagram. Enjoy!


Blueberry Amuse Bouche


Blueberry granita

Licorice extract 

Preserved lemon peel

Micro-basil or finely chiffonade sweet basil


- Place one teaspoon blueberry granita on a serving spoon.  Top with three drops of licorice, finely diced preserved lemon and micro-basil.  



Blueberry Granita/Sorbet


1 pint blueberries (2 cups)

6 tablespoons maple syrup

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 cup water


- Blend all ingredients until smooth, strain.

- Place in a wide, shallow container and freeze, scraping with a fork every 45 minutes until completely frozen.

- This can also be placed in an ice cream machine and made into a sorbet.


*Note: This recipe is raw, however, you can bring everything to a boil and reduce for 10 minutes to get a richer mixture that is smoother in texture.


*Note: Preserved lemons are commercially available, however, you can make your own by tightly packing quartered lemons in a jar with salt to cover.  Keep in the refrigerator and rinse the peel before using.  These will keep indefinitely. 





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Welcome to The Verdant Plate. The intersection of plant-based cuisine, cocktails and culture.  Glad you're here.  Enjoy!