Bumbling idiots, I know all about. But bumbleberries?
It was a new one on me when I came upon Bumbleberry Pie on a breakfast stop during the RSVP Bike Tour from Seattle to Vancouver. If you read my earlier post you’ll know how much I loved the strawberry-rhubarb pie at Snohomish Pie Company, a delicious milepost on the 112-mile first day of RSVP Bike (Ride Seattle to Vancouver & Party) that I did with my son last month. Seems that fruit pies are one of the top tourist attractions in this area.
Nicholas and I opted to skip the lame “continental breakfast” offered by our motel, setting our sights instead on the town of Lynden, some 20 miles away, where the highly touted Lynden Dutch Bakery awaited.
For about an hour and a half we pedaled through a broad valley dotted with dairy, raspberry, strawberry and blueberry farms. I was more than ready for breakfast by the time we rolled, uphill, into Lynden, a charming hamlet whose claim to fame is its Dutch-American community – one of the largest in the U.S.
Front Street, the main drag, was dotted with a few cheering residents and an official RSVP stop featuring snacks and drinks. But the riders-in-the-know headed to the Lynden Dutch Bakery, where friendly women in traditional garb manned the overflowing pastry counter and seated guests for the all-you-can-eat buffet brunch that draws tourists from all over.
Having no desire to A. spend a lot of time indoors on a glorious day or B. schlepp extra pounds of bacon and scrambled eggs along on the ride, Nicholas and I bought slabs of pie in to-go containers, tucked them precariously into the pockets of our bike shirts and biked a mile further to the inviting Woods Coffee shop where we got excellent lattes to accompany our pie. (Photo of the Bakery's Bumbleberry Pie is from Yelp.)
I had opted for Bumbleberry Pie, largely because I had never heard of such a thing. Must be some special berry grown only in the Pacific Northwest I speculated as I gobbled the luscious blend of flaky pastry and fat, juicy berries swimming in shiny, lightly thickened juices.
Only when I sat down to write this post did I learn that bumbleberry is a Canadian term, widely used in the Pacific Northwest, meaning a mixture of fresh berries, usually blackberry, raspberry and strawberry, but sometimes blueberry and boysenberry too. It’s the most popular pie at the Dutch Bakery, which I guess means that it’s the best…made from whatever’s really, really good out there in the fields and woods.