Blueberry Muffins

As a graduation gift to myself, I purchased a bike over the weekend.  Part of me thought, Humph! Shouldn’t my parents be getting me this as a congratulatory gesture? But I quickly recalled the fact they have been generously putting me through not four, but five years of college. Waves of nausea were quickly followed by feeling as though I was the one responsible for shooting Bambie’s mother. I blame my own transient narcissism on my generation’s ego-centric mentality. When JK Rowling hands you the Harry Potter series as kids and then Mark Zuckerberg invents Facebook for your teen and early adult years, the generation is bound to grow up solely thinking about themselves. Our sense of self-worth has only trended in an upward moving direction, never being deterred by frivolous matters like the economy, bioterrorism threats, or the resignation of Jim Tressel. We just expect awesomeness to fall into our laps. When it doesn’t naturally happen, we tend to wind up jaded and little bit pissed. Man we’re abominable.

I’ve decided to make the post of the week a recipe. While recovering from a three-day weekend filled with biking, running, baseball, and dart throwing I thought I’d make it easy on myself. I mentioned my Nana’s blueberry muffins in the last post. These things aren’t so much muffins, as they are cupcakes without frosting. Don’t get me wrong they are delicious. I don’t know where exactly she got the recipe from, but whoever it was, they loved their sugar. These are the kind of muffins that just sit in a lump in your chest for about 20 minutes post consumption. While you don’t have to twist my arm to get me to eat one, I have recently put my own spin on the recipe. I am a dietetics major after all. So here is my revamped blueberry muffin recipe.

Blueberry Muffins
Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients:
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
Coarse white sparking sugar for garnish (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line muffin tin with papers or grease each cup.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, then set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar with a hand-held or stand mixer, until light and fluffy.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition
  5. Add vanilla and yogurt and mix until incorporated.
  6. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed just until the batter is smooth. It will be thick.
  7. Fold in berries by hand, using a wooden spoon or spatula.
  8. Scoop batter into prepared muffin tins and top with coarse white sugar, if desired.
  9. Bake for 18-24 minutes. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes, then remove muffins and allow muffins to finish cooling.
I took this picture!!!
I do have a few helpful tips for these muffins. One, if using frozen berries, do not allow them to thaw. Incorporating them into the batter frozen helps prevent the berries from bleeding into the batter.  This may add 5 minutes of bake time to your muffins.

Secondly, your freezer is often times your best ally in the kitchen.  This cavernous, frigid box seems to go forgotten by many. It’s not just there to store your coffee grounds and ice cream novelties.  I have now lived on my own (as in sans roommates) for the last two years, and without my freezer I think I would have gone insane.  For people living in a large household, freezing leftovers or baked goods seems idiotic. If you’re one of those people, you’re right. However, there are some of us out there who want to enjoy the lasagnas, muffins, bagels, and soups but don’t want to feel obligated to eat them every day of the week in order to prevent the guilt that follows wasting food. This is where your freezer comes in. I do a lot of batch cooking where I’ll divide up the final product and then freeze it in single servings. This concept applies to these muffins. Even if there are a lot of mouths to feed I recommend freezing them. One, it protects their freshness much longer than if you’d let them sit out on the counter. Two, when they’re out of sight, they’re out of mind.

Bearing this tip in mind, once your muffins have completely cooled, place them in a one-gallon freezer bag and let your freezer act as a preservative.  I hope you enjoy!

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