Saturday, July 25, 2009

Good Morning!

"Mama, my tummy is hungry for blueberry muffins with sprinkles".
Good morning to you too, my little one! What a lovely wake up call at 5:43am. A request for blueberry muffins with sprinkles...SPRINKLES? I know many who love the look of sprinkles, but I do not do sprinkles. I don't have any sprinkles. Where did he get the idea for sprinkles?

After my first cup of coffee and halfway into the muffin batter, I asked my child, 'what sprinkles do you want on your muffins, honey?' He calmly replied, 'the white ones, the crumbs ones. I like crumbs, mama.'
Now that made more sense, a crumb topping. Kinda sophisticated for a 4 year old, if you ask me. I have not made a blueberry muffin with crumb topping. Pumpkin, cinnamon, apple muffins, yes...blueberry, no. I quickly filtered thru my recipes, both hard copy and bookmarked.

Finally, I settled on a light slightly crunchy crumb topping. The end product, a wonderfully aromatic way to say, 'good morning' as well as a fluffy, tasty, pretty blueberry muffin. I knew it was a hit when I heard, 'I love my mama's muffins!'
What a way to start the day!

I found this wonderful recipe for blueberry muffins about 2 years ago at I halved the recipe, which yielded 12 standard sized muffins, and used frozen lemon zest. ( I find it so very painful to throw away lemon, lime, and orange peels away....all those precious oils can't be wasted! It's sacrilege) The recipe was practically followed as written. It is a solid recipe!

*I must add that you must make sure NOT to over mix batter and make sure your baking powder has not expired--6 months maximum from opening date.
I can guarantee you, you will have inedible blueberry scented bricks.

Blueberry Muffins
(posted as halved from the original)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
3/4 cup plain yogurt ( I used whole milk plain yogurt)
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

3/4 cup blueberries
1/2 tablespoon flour ( if using defrosted frozen blueberries)

"Sprinkles"/Crumb Topping:
Martha Stewart Living, May 2009
2 tablespoons confectioner's sugar
1 1/2 - 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
pinch of salt

Adjust the oven rack to the middle part of the oven. Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a medium bowl stir sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. Add cold butter using fingertips, fork, or pastry blender. Manipulate mix until it resembles crumbs. Set aside.
(You may need to add more flour, depending on weather/moisture, and temperature)

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, sugar, and lemon zest beating until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating until incorporated after each one.
Beat in one half of the dry ingredients until just incorporated. Beat in one third of the yogurt. Beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients. Beat in a second third of the yogurt. Beat in the remaining dry ingredients and then the remaining yogurt. (At this point your batter will look fluffy)
Again be careful to beat until just incorporated. Do not over beat.
Fold in the berries.
If you are using frozen berries, defrost them first, drain the excess liquid, and then coat them in a light dusting of flour. *

Use a standard 12-muffin muffin pan. Coat each muffin cup lightly with olive oil or grapeseed oil using a pastry brush, or with a little butter. Or use one of those convenient vegetable oil sprays.**
Distribute the muffin dough equally among the cups, as with crumb topping. Bake until muffins and topping are a light golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes. Test with a long toothpick to make sure the center of the muffins are done.
Set on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the tin and serve slightly warm.

*I used frozen berries. I did not rinse or flour, but rather quickly folded in the berries to prevent them from sticking to eachother and to prevent them from wanting to sink to the bottom.

**I used paper muffin liners and sprayed the inside of the liner