blueberry muffins

sometimes, simple is best and blueberry muffins are about as simple as it can get.  making a cake to take out to the garden each week means i need think about what i will to make, get the needed ingredients and hope that the recipe works.  it’s been too hot!  i made muffins instead.  then it poured rain and i couldn’t go to the garden, i stayed home and ate muffins instead.

a few notes; i prefer fresh blueberries for this recipe but it works great with frozen berries too.  just take care not to let them thaw or they will turn the batter grey.  for best results, i prefer to grease and flour the pan rather than use paper liners but you can use them if you wish.  for the most consistent size, i use portion scoops.  not only will the muffins bake evenly, it will make quick work of portioning them out which is always a plus when working with frozen fruit.  for the large, texas style muffins, i find a #6 or white scoop will work, for standard sized muffins, a #12 or green scoop will work.  specialty pans may take some experimenting.  any ikea shoppers out there?  i used their pretty red muffin pan with the tall narrow cups to make the muffins in the photo and to fill them, i used a #20 or yellow scoop.

for those of you not familiar with portion scoops and their sizes, the system is quite simple.  way back when, the size referred to the number of scoops to fill a quart sized container.  a white (#6) scoop would mean 6 scoops to make a quart, the green (#12) would take 12, and so on.  today, the sizes still stand but many more sizes have been added and you will find them as small as a #100 scoop.  to find the best selection, visit a restaurant supply.  while they may seem pricey, they last a long time if used properly.  we have using the ones in our home kitchen for about 15 years.

blueberry muffins
6 texas size or 12 standard size muffins

4 ounces unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/3 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/3 cup blueberries
1/2 cup buttermilk
cinnamon sugar or plain sugar for the tops of the muffins

preheat the oven to 375.  prepare the muffin tin by either greasing/flouring it or with paper muffin cups.  place the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla into the bowl of a food processor.  pulse to combine and with the motor running, add the eggs one at a time.  allow the batter to process until glossy and smooth.  scrape the batter into a bowl.  place the flour and baking powder into a sifter or mesh strainer and sift it over the batter.  dump the blueberries over the top of the flour and fold it a few times.  sprinkle the buttermilk over the batter and fold together gently.  the more you mix, the more the berries will color the batter so only mix enough to completely combine.  use a scoop or a spoon to divide the batter between the cups. sprinkle the tops of the muffins with cinnamon sugar or plain sugar and bake.  the smaller muffins will take about 20 minutes, the larger ones, closer to 30.  using frozen berries can extend this.  check them a little early to be safe and then keep an eye on them.  they are done when a cake tester comes out clean.  allow them to cool in the pan for a few minutes and then turn them out on to a rack to cool.  they are tasty when warm but those hot blueberries can be like lava pockets so be careful!

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