Karen Fuentes teaches how to make a cranberry and hazelnut pie during a class at Hazel Blue Acres hazelnut and blueberry farm. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Karen Fuentes teaches how to make a cranberry and hazelnut pie during a class at Hazel Blue Acres hazelnut and blueberry farm. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Hazelnuts plus cranberries equals one pretty pie in Silvana

The special Christmastime treat was a hit at Hazel Blue Acres’ cooking demonstration.

You might know Hazel Blue Acres near Silvana for its namesakes: blueberries and hazelnuts.

You might not know that you can learn some new recipes at the farm.

Cooking demonstrations take place at the farm on the second Tuesday of the month — outdoors in the summer, in the barn other times.

Karen Fuentes, who runs the farm with her husband, Spencer Fuentes, said she started the demonstrations two years ago.

“Well, it was fall and we had a lot of blueberries to sell — frozen,” she said. “I was thinking of ways to bring people to the farm in the off-season. I love to bake and I love to cook.”

Voila!

The demonstrations are held at 2 and 6 p.m., showcasing the farm’s organic blueberries, hazelnuts, and Spencer Fuentes’ vacuum-packed sockeye salmon caught near Bristol Bay, Alaska.

This summer, Mary Ann Monty, of Silvana, shared a recipe with Karen Fuentes for Hazelnut Cranberry Pie, which has been a top seller at Mitzel’s American Kitchen in Kent.

Fuentes baked the pie at a recent cooking demonstration . With its hazelnuts and cranberries that float to the top, she said it’s a pretty pie that would be a special treat at Christmastime.

Monty was there to taste test it.

“It was very, very good,” she said.

Monty said she clipped the recipe from The Daily Herald years ago, and for years made it for Christmas dinner.

“It was a nice treat to be able to taste that pie again, and a nice treat to have someone else do the work of making it,” she said.

Monty said the pie is not hard to prepare.

If you stop by the farm’s cooking demonstrations, you get to sample what Fuentes makes, as well as pick up copies of the recipes. Sign up for the farm’s email newsletter to find out what’s cooking each month.

Fuentes is launching a new tradition — a recipe of the year. This year, it’s blueberry salsa (see recipe below).

She said she likes spontaneity, so she doesn’t plan out what she’ll make at the demonstrations months in advance.

But she is already thinking about what to make in January. It will involve blueberries — perhaps a quick bread or bar, she said.

Then she has a second thought.

“Maybe my blueberry cooking demonstration should be some sort of blueberry cake,” she said. “For my birthday.”

Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or salyer@heraldnet.com.

Hazelnut cranberry pie

¾ cup fresh or frozen cranberries, rinsed and drained

1 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped per your taste

1 10-inch pie crust, unbaked

4 eggs

1 cup brown sugar

¾ cup light corn syrup (see note)

½ teaspoon salt

⅓ cup butter, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla

In a small mixing bowl, combine cranberries and hazelnuts and spread evenly in the pie crust.

In a large bowl beat eggs until frothy.

Add brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, butter and vanilla.

Mix thoroughly and pour over cranberry mixture.

Bake 10 minutes on middle rack of oven preheated to 400 degrees.

Reduce heat to 325 and bake an additional 30 to 35 minutes, until filling is pretty set.

Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature before serving.

— Recipe from Mitzel’s American Kitchen

Note: For those who want an alternative to corn syrup, Karen Fuentes has a tip: “Our friend Catherine Coggins said her pie was delicious with a few variations. Her child is allergic to corn, so she said you can melt sugar and water together in a 1 to 1 ratio … and use that instead of the corn syrup.”

Blueberry salsa

1 yellow bell pepper, chopped

1 orange bell pepper, chopped

½ large red onion, diced

2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 cups fresh or slightly thawed frozen blueberries, washed

Salt and pepper to taste

Cayenne pepper to taste

Combine bell peppers, onion, jalapenos, garlic, cilantro, lime juice and salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix well, then fold in the blueberries. The blueberries can be whole or roughly chopped with a knife or food processor. Season to taste with cayenne.

This is best assembled the day you serve it. Serve with tortilla chips or carrot sticks.

— Recipe by Karen Fuentes

If you go

Hazel Blue Acres is a hazelnut and blueberry farm at 430 Hevly Road, near Silvana. Free cooking demonstrations are scheduled on the second Tuesday of every month at 2 and 6 p.m. Find Hazel Blue Acres on Facebook for the schedule. Call 360-770-7261 or go to www.hazelblueacres.com for more information.w

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