Monday, September 15, 2008

Muffin: tops.

Muffin innards

Blueberry muffins are not just for breakfast, especially when they are excellent. First made as an early afternoon snack on Saturday, these muffins have been no less than excellent over the past 3 days.

The weekend was quite hot and muggy in NYC, so what on earth brought on this burst of baking? It's like this, cats: I once mentioned my mustard collection. Well, I'm also guilty of book hoarding. This habit does include cookbooks. I own just more than my fair share. So, in the interest of assuaging consumer guilt I've had it as a goal for a while to use every one of them at least once a year. So far I've failed. I may yet make it in 2008. This time I combined (with a few modifications) two recipes so as to get at more of the collection of cookbooks.


Represented here are Betty Crocker's Hostess Cookbook: Guest-Tested Recipes and Party Plans for Every Occasion (1973) - which I may never have used before - and How to Cook Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Food by Mark Bittman (1998) - which I use all the time. Beautiful blueberries at the farmers' market didn't hurt the inspiration process, either.

Blueberry dreamboats

Zesty Blueberry Muffins aka Blueberry Dreamboats
(makes 12-18 muffins)

Grease or line muffin pans. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Prepare crumb topping: With fingers or fork, combine 1/4 cup brown sugar (packed), 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, 1 tsp grated lime zest, and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon. Set aside.

Mix dry ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 3 tsp. baking powder

In another bowl, combine wet ingredients: 1 T. vegetable oil, 2 T melted butter (or 3 T of your favorite butter or oil), 1 beaten egg, and 1 c. milk with 1 tsp. lime zest.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Pour wet mixture into dry ingredients. Stir until all ingredients are combined and you do not see any loose dry ingredients in mixture. Resulting batter will be thick and have lumps. That's okay. Feel free to add a splash of milk if it doesn't look moist enough. Now add 1 1/2 cups fresh, washed (stems removed) blueberries, folding them in to combine. Don't overmix.

Fill muffin cups 2/3 full. Sprinkle crumb mixture on top. Bake 20-30 minutes at 400 F. A toothpick inserted into the center of a fully-baked muffin should come out clean. Let cool in pans 5 minutes, then remove from pans. Eat right away! I found these to be so good and moist that I did not even butter any of them, which is rare for me.


Mechanic said...

i worship that bittman cookbook, and its still my defacto wedding shower gift. its really got almost everything. i'm glad you extrapolated such a yummy recipe from it!

Jennette said...

We've given it as a wedding gift, too. It's my most-used cookbook.

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