This recipe started with the Famous Department Store Blueberry Muffins recipe from KAF. It is a strong start, but mine are light, tender, soft, crunchy and packed with flavor. Some of the changes that I made and why:
-Whisking the whole recipe by hand because I have been following the Blue Zones tips for healthy living. They suggest not buying treats, only making them by hand, the old fashioned way and I love that.
-Using my vanilla sugar because it makes almost everything better.
-Grating lemon zest into the butter/vanilla sugar mixture because blueberry and lemon love each other.
-Add a little less vanilla extract and add in some almond extract to create that unmistakable aroma.
-Decrease the amount of blueberries to 1 pint (2cups) not only because we like it better that way, but also because unless it is during the end of July when I am picking 20+ lbs. of blueberries, I usually only buy one pint.
-Last but not least, instead of regular sugar I top my muffins with Sugar in the Raw because it’s crunchier and has a deeper flavor.
This recipe can be stretched to make 3-4 more muffins by filling each cup a little less. This recipe of 12 is fantastic because they flow over the edges and this house prefers a little extra muffin top.
Zester (if using lemon)
Muffin Tin (recipe makes 12)
Muffin/Cupcake papers (12)
1/4c Cookie Scoop
8T Room temperature* butter
1c Vanilla sugar*
Zest of 1 lemon (optional)
2 Large room temperature* eggs
1/2t vanilla extract
1/8-1/4t almond extract
2t baking powder
1/2t Kosher salt
2c AP flour
1/2 cup milk or buttermilk (not too cold)
2c (one pint) fresh blueberries (usually do 2 heaping cups!), cleaned and dry
3T Sugar in the Raw
1. Preheat your oven to 375*. Line muffin tin with liners. In a large bowl combine the butter and vanilla sugar vigorously with a whisk. Add in the lemon zest if using and whisk until light. This will take a few minutes, you can also use an electric mixer if you prefer.
2. Whisk in eggs, one at a time incorporating fully after each. Whisk in the vanilla and almond extracts, the baking powder and salt.
3. Whisk in the flour and milk alternately, starting with the flour. Do not over mix here! Then add in the blueberries with a spatula.
4. Fill each muffin liner with a heaping cookie scoop full of the velvety batter. Sprinkle the Sugar in the Raw using about 1/2-3/4t for each muffin.
5. Bake at 375* for 28-30 minutes, quickly turning the pan mid-way*. Remove when they are golden. Allow to cool for at least 5 minutes before enjoying.
* Vanilla sugar can be made by placing used vanilla bean pods into a container of white sugar for about a week. You can continue to use the same pods as long as they are fragrant (years).
* If you didn’t plan ahead and don’t have room temperature butter, you can use the defrost button on your microwave and just keep an eye that it doesn’t melt. Alternatively you can cut it up into small pieces and put it in a warm area of your kitchen while you prepare everything else.
* Again, if you didn’t have time to get your eggs closer to room temperature… An old farmer that I once worked with told me the best way to get your eggs to room temperature is to keep them in your bra until you are ready to use them. It is one of my favorite tips ever, but be careful! I once had them in my bra while vigorously whisking and crushed one in there, messy clean-up!!!
If you are looking for a great blueberry pie recipe, Elisabeth’s Double Good Blueberry Pie is the absolute best. I have converted those who claim they “don’t like pie” to beg for this treat. The only things that I do differently when making the pie is to use my vanilla sugar (instructions above) and add a small pinch of salt to the sugar/cornstarch mixture. Balance. Perfection. I serve with either homemade whipped cream or the only one in a bottle that is edible…. Cabot.
Let me know if you make either of these recipes and how you enjoy them… My kids fight over these treasures!
*When I am baking I always reset the temperature after opening the door for steady cooking.