Friday, July 20, 2012

Muffin Mama

We are at the peak of blueberry season here in the Northeast. Not only are they front and center in every produce department, you can take a short drive to one of the local farms and pick your own. If you haven't picked your own blueberries before, I definitely recommend it. No thorns, no stooping, and (unlike apples) you can pick to your heart's content and don't end up with thirty pounds of them.

In addition to stuffing handfuls of them directly into my mouth, I did some lovely baking with my bounty. First order of business: blueberry muffins.

I love blueberry muffins. And I really love streusel topping. I happened upon this recipe and figured it was a winner. For all the pans I do own, I do not have a muffin top pan. I used a regular one and the results were delightful. Here is the recipe from the lovely folks at

Blueberry Muffin Tops

For batter
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/3 cup whole milk
1 whole large egg
1 large yolk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups fresh blueberries (12 oz)
For topping
3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 1/2 tablespoons sugar

Make batter:
  1. Put oven rack in upper third of oven and preheat to 375°F. Generously butter muffin pans.
  2. Melt butter in a small saucepan over moderately low heat, then remove from heat. Whisk in milk, then whisk in whole egg, yolk, and vanilla until combined well.
  3. Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl, then add milk mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in blueberries gently but thoroughly.
  4. Divide batter among 12 muffin cups, spreading evenly.
Make topping and bake muffins:
  1. Rub together all topping ingredients in a bowl with your fingertips until crumbly, then sprinkle evenly over batter in cups.
  2. Bake until golden and crisp and a wooden pick or skewer inserted diagonally into center of a muffin comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes.
  3. Cool in pans on a rack 15 minutes, then run a knife around edge of each muffin top and carefully remove from cups. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Literate Baker Notes:  I used three cups of blueberries.  The resulting muffins were a bit messy, but blueberririffic.  I did not use muffin liners because I find muffins always seem to stick.

One of these with an egg white omelet would be a fairly balanced breakfast.  Two would be perfectly reasonable.  Four with a half a pot of coffee and the Sunday New York Times?  Why, that's weekend indulgence at its finest (saving, perhaps, a way to incorporate bacon)!  No matter how you have them, you really really should have them.  Preferably while sitting on the back deck and having your ass kicked by a crossword puzzle.

Kick up your feet and...

Keep it sweet.

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