Orange blueberry cheese bread on a visit to Maine

Blueberry cheese bread with orange an easy tea bread
Orange blueberry cheese bread – extra tasty when toasted.

One summer years ago my mom, dad and a few of my siblings were traveling in Maine, on their way to pick me up at a friend’s cottage.  They left home a little later than expected and by suppertime were only as far as Camden so rather than push on for another three hours they decided to stay put and look for a place to spend the night. But this was August — everything was full.

After a good long search they we lucky to squeeze into an inn that had one room left, a renovated loft in the barn. It cost a small fortune, but at least breakfast was included. (My dad loved breakfast, the big, full English-style meal. I’m sure he and my brothers fell asleep that night dreaming of crispy bacon, fried eggs and thick slices of toast.)

The inn was called Boswell’s Bight and it had just been opened by a couple from New York. They packed up for Maine after the husband, a lawyer, suffered a nervous breakdown. I’m not sure that running a B&B in a tourist town would have been very therapeutic but in the summer of 1984 things seemed to be going well.

My family woke early the next morning and sat down in the breakfast room to this: blueberry orange tea bread, freshly squeezed orange juice and good coffee. My mom was delighted. Good coffee was hard to come by in the 80’s. You can imagine my dad and brothers were less enthusiastic. After breakfast they hit the road, but not before stopping at a restaurant so they could have their bacon and eggs.

The proprietor was more than happy to share the recipe for her bread with my mom. We like it best toasted because the cheese browns a little. I make it with Speerville Flour Mill whole white flour and extra old white cheddar. If you bake it with conventional white flour and orange cheddar (as it was served at Boswell’s Bight) the colours will be especially pretty.


Boswell’s Bight Blueberry Orange Bread

2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

1 ½ tsp baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

1 tbsp. grated orange rind

2 cups grated sharp cheddar

1 cup blueberries

¾ cup orange juice

1 tbsp. soft butter

1 egg

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, soda, salt, orange rind, cheese and blueberries. Rub in the soft butter. Whisk the egg into the orange juice and fold into the flour mixture. Stir just until combined. Scoop into a well-greased 1 ½ quart load pan. Bake at 350 an hour to 65 minutes, until the bread feels firm to the touch and a tester comes out clean.

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