Notes: This old-fashioned dessert, which is a close cousin to a slump, is made by simmering barely sweetened dumplings in spiced blueberries. Be careful not to let the mixture come to a full boil or it may overflow the sides of the pan.
Sunset JULY 2002
1. In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium heat, frequently stir blueberries, 1/3 cup sugar, molasses, lemon peel, lemon juice, nutmeg, cloves, and 1/2 cup water until the mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently until the berries have released their juices and the flavors are blended, about 10 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, salt, and the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. With your fingers or a pastry blender, rub or cut the butter into the flour mixture until coarse crumbs form. Add the milk and stir just until mixture forms a soft dough (do not overmix).
3. Drop 1/4-cup portions of the dough into the simmering fruit mixture. Cover the frying pan and simmer until a wooden skewer inserted in the center of the dumplings comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Spoon the warm dumplings and fruit equally into four bowls and drizzle the portions with cream if desired.
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