Monday, September 5, 2011

Blueberry Muffins vs. Blueberry Muffins

Today is Labor Day, which to me indicates the official end to summer. At the end of the day, all of the decorative flags will come down, as will the "America" sign that's hanging on my front door. While we travelled a lot and had a great summer, we never really entertained. Usually, throughout the summer I make blueberry muffins for when friends come for coffee. I make a batch of 12, and whatever isn't eaten gets put in the freezer immediately. This way, if anyone wants a muffin, we can just take one out of the freezer and either heat it in the oven, or let it sit out at room temperature until it's defrosted. It tastes amazing; as fresh as the day it was put in the freezer (never refrigerate baked goods (unless they actually require refrigeration), always freeze them -- refrigeration makes them stale). Usually, I take one out at night before bed, so that it will be ready for breakfast the next day.

Personally, I am not a muffin fan. I can't remember if I ever was, and I wonder what the reason was that I started making them. Regardless, I have a recipe for the best blueberry muffins ever (and they are light, and low in calories). It's a super easy recipe and doesn't require any equipment. Just two bowls and a good wooden spoon. It's a great recipe for introducing kids to baking. 

I decided to make them for a Labor Day celebration that we are attending, since I was asked to bring dessert. Usually, I make a chocolate cake (a Ghiradelli recipe), or a batch of cookies. Occasionally, I make a pie. This time, I wanted something light and festive. I bought all of the ingredients that I knew I needed, having made them a million times, then I went home to look for the recipe (I couldn't remember the measurements of things. I'm not that good.) I searched my recipe box over and over, searching different sections in the hopes that I'd just misplaced it. After about 20 minutes, I believed it was gone.

I went searching the Internet for the recipe and found something close, and decided to make that recipe. I forgot to top the muffins with sugar at before I put them in the oven (always sprinkle them with sugar -- sugar in the raw works best) so I did it at the end. I was out of sugar in the raw, so I used granulated sugar. That's the white stuff on top. Not the best idea.

This is the batch that I made from recipe I found on the Internet.
My son taste tested them and loved them.
While the batch was baking and I was wiping the counter down, I noticed that a small side table I have in the kitchen needed a cleaning, too. I took my little wooden pig off the top to wipe it down, and there I found the recipe card. I can't remember making them recently but I must have. Otherwise, why would I have removed the recipe from it's box?

Since I needed to make another batch of muffins, I used my original recipe (from January 2005) for the second dozen. The differences are small. The Internet recipe calls for plain yogurt, whereas my original calls for vanilla yogurt. Also, the Internet recipe calls for 1 1/4 cup blueberries, while my original calls for just 1 cup. The biggest difference, though, is that my original recipe calls for unsweetened orange juice. The flavor is subtle but fabulous.

The original recipe (posted below) is the one that I prefer. In photos, the first batch
looks better, but in reality, this is a lighter muffin. The first one's top almost feels like a biscuit.
I used different cupcake liners so that I could differentiate between the batches and do a taste test with W tomorrow and see which he likes better. Maybe I'll ask the kids too. They are always brutally honest. Here's the recipe for my favorite blueberry muffin. If you wish to have the Internet one, please ask me (or if you cannot read my old, scribbled recipe card). I am happy to share it with you.

Front side has the ingredients.

Back side has the how to.

POSTED UPON REQUEST~ this is what is is on the card above, just easier to read.

Quick & Easy Blueberry Muffin recipe:

  • 2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 c unsweetened o.j. (I use whatever is in the fridge, Tropicana, or Matt's Organic)
  • 2 t canola oil
  • 1 t pure vanilla extract
  • 8 oz. vanilla lowfat yogurt (I use fat-free Stonyfield Farms vanilla)
  • 1 c fresh or frozen blueberries (see details on frozen berries below)
  • 1 t sugar

Combine first five ingredients in a large bowl. Make a well in center of mixture. Combine egg and next four ingredients; add to dry mixture. Stir just until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in berries. (If using frozen berries, DO NOT DEFROST. I freeze fresh, washed berries in bags, measured 1 c per bag, so I can make them out of season. Those are great. If you use berries you've bought frozen already, they are smaller, and will bleed, making the berries purple swirled, but it looks kind of cool and they taste great. Just letting you know what to expect.)

Spoon batter evenly into the muffin tin (12 total), lined with your favorite muffin cups. I use a 1/3 c measuring cup to dole the batter out, and it works perfectly. Sprinkle 1 T sugar evenly over the batter (sugar in the raw is best -- pick up a couple of packets when you buy a coffee at the coffee shop). Bake at 400* for 18 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans immediately (be careful, they will be hot); cool on wire racks. Makes 12 muffins.


  1. so which recipe won?

  2. My first response was "So far blueberry muffins are winner winner chicken dinner." How awesome is that?