Sharing Food and Memories with Friends and Family

April 25, 2010
Irene Saiger


Blueberry Buns

Blueberries are my favorite summer fruit.  I love the color, texture, the little crown at the top of the berry, and the memories that I associate with this small delicate fruit that was plentiful on the East Coast.  As a child I picked berries in Lakewood, New Jersey and watched my Tante Marisha and mother prepare blueberry buns that we would eat straight from the oven, the warm berries oozing out with the first bite.  At The Rendezvous, a corner store in The Bronx, I always ordered fresh blueberry ice cream in the summer.  It had a particular fragrance that I had completely forgotten until this past year when a facial cream brought back this incredibly familiar smell, it was the smell of fresh blueberry ice cream.

Other memories include reading Blueberries for Sal to my children, a family favorite, and listening to Blueberry Pie by Bette Midler.

Life is peachy, let’s go bananas,
no one will care!
Blueberry Pie, let’s have fun,
’cause when all is said and done
I love you, yes I do,
’cause, Blueberry, you’re true blue.

There was a trip to Maine when the kids were little and we picked berries on Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park.  Summer trips to Toronto where blueberry buns were a local specialty of European Jewish bakeries.  I remember my cousin Rose serving a delicious blueberry cake and I have a favorite peach and blueberry cobbler recipe that I make each summer.  Blueberry buns, or  yagda bilkelach, which is what they are called in Yiddish, are from an era when you could go out and pick your berries, bring them home and spend the day making something special for your family to eat.  Summer days should be like that.  Try them.

Make your favorite challah recipe or use the one I give on an older post.


Blueberry Buns ( The photo is of my husband’s Toronto version, folded on the side but I prefer them pinched on the top)


2 cups blueberries

1/2 cup sugar

Mix blueberries and sugar and let stand for about 5 minutes.

Divide dough into 8 equal portions.  Roll dough on floured board into circles 1/8 inch in thickness.  Place one tablespoon of filling in center and bring sides of dough to the top and pinch closed.  Brush with egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water.  Sprinkle with sugar.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes.

Makes 8 buns.



12 thoughts on “Blueberry Buns

  1. Thanks, Irene, for the delicious recipe!

    Read about my efforts here, if you like:

    I’m happy to have made your acquaintance!


    • Irene, I hope you’ve been well! I am turning my food blog into an iPad app and would love to include your buns, if I may, with credit to you.
      I’ll let you know when the app is available–I’m hoping to have it up on the Apple store soon after the first of the year.

  2. Pingback: Having fun with challah dough: Knishes and Blueberry Buns « The Plate is My Canvas

  3. Apple cake is coming soon!

  4. Hi, Irene.

    I think that yagdeh bilkalech were and still are my favorite pastry. That is why both of us love every type of berry pie and fruit pie, for that matter. They are a reminder of our youth and all the wonderful memories of more carefree days. Remember mommy’s apple cake?


  5. i had in your home when norman prepared them and it was wonderful, we all loved them, go for it, love rachel

  6. Mmmm. It ALMOST makes me want to bake!
    (but instead I’ll hope to partake of yours…)

  7. Hi Irene, It’s Beth from OMG! Yummy again. Loved these past two posts. I wanted to tell you that my mom’s family is from a small town in Poland as well and she was raised in New York City. I grew up visiting family in Brooklyn and smelling my grandmother’s challah on Friday nights when we arrived. We were driving in from Pittsfield, MA. And this post reminded me that we used to go blueberry picking every year at the base of Mt. Greylock in the Berkshires. Thanks for sharing the memories and recipes.

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