The months of July and August mean that it is blueberry season here in the northern Midwest. There is nothing like the taste of fresh blueberries ripened on bushes, instead of in those little plastic containers on the shipping truck, followed by the grocery store. The ones that are picked fully ripe are much sweeter and for lack of a better description, taste “blue.” Because I would have to drive some distance to pick my own blueberries, I take advantage of the local farmer’s market which has Michigan growers bring them in for my pure enjoyment.
While I love to eat fresh blueberries by the handful, they are a great fruit for baking. When we first moved to our house, our neighbor brought us a blueberry pie that was absolutely delicious. Blueberry crumble is also delectable and much easier to make then a pie. However, my favorite thing to make with blueberries are fresh piping hot blueberry muffins.
It has taken me awhile to find a blueberry muffin recipe that I love. Many are too heavy or too oily. This recipe ,which I found from The Pioneer Woman, is light and moist because of the added yogurt, which means less oil (and less fat and calories) in the mix. It also has a yummy caramelized sweet topping, made from turbinado sugar (you can also use brown sugar), sprinkled on top of each muffin. Don’t forget that step of sprinkling the sugar because it takes the muffins from good to great.
I have made some tweaks to the recipe so I included my recipe below but if you want to check out the original, I have linked to it above.
3 cups minus 2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
Heavy pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 generous cup plain, unflavored yogurt (throw in extra if you want)
2 1/3 cups fresh blueberries
Capful of Vanilla Extract
Turbinado sugar or brown sugar
Preheat oven to 385 degrees.
In a large bowl sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In another large bowl whisk together sugar, oil, capful of vanilla, egg, and yogurt. Add the dry ingredients and stir to a count of 10.
Add blueberries to mixture and stir 3 times.
Add mixture to muffin pans lined with foil muffin liners (you can also butter the muffin pans if you don’t have the liners). Sprinkle turbinado sugar or brown sugar over top.
Bake 20 to 25 minutes.
Serve warm with a little butter.
You can also reheat these. I often take about half of them and put them in a Ziploc freezer bag and put them in the freezer. A few seconds in the microwave to defrost and maybe a minute in the toaster oven. You can enjoy blueberry muffins made with those bluest of blue summer berries into the winter months when the snow is flying and the temperatures are frigid, and taste the warmth of summer on your tongue.
I may never be happy, but tonight I am content. Nothing more than an empty house, the warm hazy weariness from a day spent setting strawberry runners in the sun, a glass of cool sweet milk, and a shallow dish of blueberries bathed in cream. When one is so tired at the end of a day one must sleep, and at the next dawn there are more strawberry runners to set, and so one goes on living, near the earth. At times like this I’d call myself a fool to ask for more… -Sylvia Plan