“Ok… Just One More” Blueberry Muffins
Ubiquitous among breakfast shops, tucked away inns and quaint bed and breakfasts is the oversized, berry laden, homemade blueberry muffin. Days beg to begin with something so sweet and delicious. Mouths yearn for the pop of a warm blueberry amongst the rich, heavy cake. The perfectly golden tops signal hungry eyes like a siren signals a sailor to his death. Unavoidable is the lure of a pile of delicately stacked blueberry muffins. Whether for breakfast, after breakfast, before lunch, for lunch, after lunch, before dinner, at dinner, after dinner, as dessert or as a midnight snack, there is no time a blueberry muffin does not seem appropriate. There is no time a blueberry muffin is not needed.
There is something you should know about me. I don’t eat breakfast unless it is a blueberry muffin. This idiosyncrasy started a long time ago, in cities far, far away. As a kid I saw no need for breakfast because I usually did not wake until early afternoon. Even on school days I just waited until lunchtime. On vacations though, things were a little different. My parents often felt the need to pack our schedules tighter than a nerd’s backpack is stuffed with textbooks. We woke with the sun and from there began a 15 hour day which was suppose to be relaxing and was anything but. From the moment we were pulled out of bed we were preached about the power of eating a good breakfast. We would need it, we were constantly reminded.
To me the thought of eating something, anything at this early of an hour was enough to make me sick. Scrambled Eggs? Get it away! Sausage? Ok yuck! How about an icing-soaked pastry? Tempting but no way, jose! Bacon? Oh god, I don’t even want bacon?! Of course within an hour or two of being out and about on our “enjoyable” trek through some foriegn land, I would begin to complain about how tired I was, and how my tummy hurt. Somehow, lost in the black void that is my memory, things changed. I don’t know when or how I was introduced to the blueberry muffin but I remember soon my complaints being replaced with small bites of blueberry deliciousness. Soon I even began seeking out these muffins as my family would indulge in their greasy, fatty, gross heavy breakfasts.
Vacations for me became as much an opportunity to document the types blueberry muffins of the world as it was a chance to explore a new place. Soon my love for vacation-muffins turned into a love for all things muffin, especially the traditional blueberry variety. Then I learned to bake. It was all over then. There is only one thing I bake more than blueberry muffins and that is chocolate chip cookies. Seeing as I bake about six dozen chocolate chip cookies a week, it is not hard to see that the amount of blueberry muffins I bake is also staggering. What can I say? I love them. For breakfast, with a strong cup of coffee, they are perfect. As a mid afternoon snack they excel. As a replacement or supplement to dessert is another place these guys shine. And the midnight snack? You bet. AMAZING.
I’ve tried few recipes in my day (can a twenty-five year old get away with saying that?) but these may just be my favorite. The cake is moist and heavier compared to some varieties and is plenty sweet too, to offset the tartness of the berries. The cake batter could stand on its own honestly. The speckled blueberries though of course take this muffin to the next level. While logic may dictate that a muffin made entirely of blueberries would be delicious, I do believe you can go too far with the berries. This recipe finds that just right amount. There is a reason I am calling these the “Ok… Just One More” Blueberry Muffins. They’re like chips. You can’t just have one.
This recipe yields 24 muffins. Feel free to cut it in half if you need to. It should scale with little problem.
“Ok… Just One More” Blueberry Muffins Recipe
1 1/2 Pints blueberries
2 1/4 cups sugar
18 tablespoons butter (2 1/4 sticks)
8 ounces cream cheese
1/3 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Step One: Preheat your oven to 350F. Line cupcake pans with paper liners.
Step Two: Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about five minutes.
Step Three: Add the cream cheese and blend in well.
Step Four: Add each egg, one at a time, mixing well until the egg is completely blended in.
Step Five: Add the milk and vanilla and mix well.
Step Six: Mix the dry ingredients together (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt & cinnamon).
Step Seven: Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture and mix until just combined. You can do this part by hand if it will help you keep from overmixing the batter.
Step Eight: Toss the blueberries in a tablespoon of flour. Then fold the blueberries into the batter taking care not to break the berries or overmix the batter.
Step Nine: Spoon the batter into the prepared cupcake pans. Each cup should be filled to just above the top.
Step Ten: Bake in a preheated oven for 22 to 28 minutes, until a toothpick comes out just clean (a couple crumbs hanging on are ok).
I would say let them cool before eating but who am I kidding. Like cookies, as soon as blueberry muffins come out of the oven I am scarfing them down. They are well worth the third degree burns in your mouth.*
*Note From The Author: I am in no way shape or form suggesting you subject yourself to pain in order to enjoy these blueberry muffins. I do not want to get sued over this. So, eat with care!