Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Best Blueberry Muffins

Whenever I go to the market with my children I try to get them to pick a new fruit or vegetable. This tactic seems to work just a teeny tiny bit better for getting them to try new things and have healthy options. So one day, not too long ago, my daughter started jumping up and down and begging for the blueberries. They looked good. The price still wasn't that low. But....

Me: Will you eat them?
Danielle: Yes!
Me: Promise?
Danielle: Yes! I love them!
Me: Are you sure?
Danielle: Mommmmmmyyyyyy... I want blueberries. They are sooooo yummy and I am going to eat all of them all up as soon as we get home.
Me: Okay then. You better eat them!

Flash forward an hour or so. Danielle eats one. She makes a face and pushes the basket away. I throw back a few. Nicholas wouldn't try them. And forget my husband. He is the worst!

You see last summer in Vermont, Danielle at a gazillion blueberries from a wild bush but the commercial variety do not seem to appeal to her too much. They are plump and pretty but do not have that same sweet and sour taste. So they sat in the refrigerator. And sat. And sat. And finally... there was only really one thing to do with them!

The problem was. I am not the biggest fan of muffins. They always taste just okay to me and after eating them I feel more bloated than if I ate a whole pizza! And YES, I have eaten a whole pizza once or twice in my life! The muffins just seem to sit in my stomach like a ton of bricks. But others like muffins so I could always bring some to my mom, grandmother, kid's teachers etc... Right?

WRONG! These turned out sooooo good that a couple made it to my mom's house and that was it! We gobbled them up for 2 days and then I froze just a couple for some special morning when I really wanted a sweet confection. Really these are probably THE best muffins I have ever had. You must give them a try.

Blueberry Muffins Recipe
(Adapted from Simply Recipes)

3 cups of all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 stick of unsalted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup Greek style yogurt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

1 1/2 cups blueberries
1 Tbsp flour (if using defrosted frozen berries)

cinnamon sugar mixture

1 Adjust the oven rack to the middle-lower part of the oven. Preheat oven to 375°F.

2 Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and set aside.

3 In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together, beating until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating until incorporated after each one. Beat in the grated lemon peel.

4 Beat in one half of the dry ingredients until just incorporated. Beat in one third of the yogurt. Beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients. Beat in a second third of the yogurt. Beat in the remaining dry ingredients and then the remaining yogurt. Again be careful to beat until just incorporated. Do not over beat. Fold in the berries. If you are using frozen berries, defrost them first, drain the excess liquid, and then coat them in a light dusting of flour.

5 Use a standard 12-muffin muffin pan. Coat each muffin cup lightly with oil using a pastry brush, or with a little butter. Or use one of those convenient vegetable oil sprays. Distribute the muffin dough equally among the cups. Sprinkle with a little cinnamon sugar mixture. Bake until muffins are golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes. Test with a long toothpick to make sure the center of the muffins are done. Set on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the tin and serve slightly warm.

Just perfect! And soooo moist. Delish!

P.S. If you think I am missing or MIA recently and possibly continue to forget to visit or post now and then it is just because with the warm, summer-like weather we have had here in So. Cal., I have been inspired to get off the computer and play with the kids, go for long walks, go to the pool (our community pool is now heated again), exercise, take the kids to Disneyland (with our passes), go to the pool, go out to eat, make margaritas, drink wine outdoors, go skating, go to the pool, make black bean soup, make cilantro pepita dressing, make cocktails, go to the pool, go to the beach, make more play dates, sign the kids up for camp, go to the pool, watch movies, have friends over for dinner, make food out of nothing, teach a friend from Romania how to make Mexican food, go to the pool, help plan a cousin's wedding, make birth announcements, go to the pool, go shopping, go to sushi, buy clothes, go to the pool, make mini tuna crab cakes in little mini tortilla bowls and take them to friends at the pool (I am so mad I didn't take a picture of this yesterday! They were GOOD, cute and I didn't even think I had anything for lunch before envisioning it), meet up with old friends you now talk to on FB, go to a museum, order pizza with friends, have more friends over, did I say go to the pool?

Needless to say my kids are progressing by leaps and bounds in their swimming skills. They are great. I am proud. We are fat, VERY tan and happy. So if you do miss me... I think you know where to find me! AT THE POOL! So come on down and join us! Bring some sunscreen.


That Girl said...

You can always send your blueberries over to me! We go through a container a week. Although now that cherries are out I think we're moving on to them.

Bunny said...

There's cream in them there muffins!! I'm making these!!! Can I use frozen blueberries???? It's unbelieveable what they want at the store for blueberries right now. But I want these!!!

Bunny said...

I just saw in the recipe you can use frozen!!

Dewi said...

Oh I truly believe you, having heavy cream and the yogurt in the recipe got be good!

Laura in Paris said...

They look divine!

Erin said...

I'm so jealous of your warm weather activities! We've missed your blogging... but I think it's so important to be running around outside with the kids when you have the chance. If it ever feels like summer here in Chicago I'll be blogging less and playing outside more :)

Nicole said...

Kate- you guys are good with the blueberries! So healthy! Now cherries... mmmmmmmmmm... those are my favorite!

Bunny- As you saw, you can use frozen blueberries. Let me know if you make them and how you like these.

Elra- They are! The original recipe just called for yogurt but I didn't have enough, hence the bit of cream as well! ;)

Laura- Thank you!

Erin- Yes. I feel guilty sometimes about blogging. Like I should post more and visit and comment more. But what IS the most important thing in life? Maybe just LIVING and being with the kids!

Gloria Baker said...

Dear I love your post and blueberries muffins I will try this recipe sooon!!!!! I love them I love blueberries too!. Enjoy ytour kids!!! xxGloria

Melissa said...

How funny, muffins always feel heavy to me too. Though for me it's usually because they have too much sugar.

I trust you and I will give these a try, especially because I'm supposed to be testing some Greek yogurt. This will be great.

Laurie said...

I'm on an antioxidant boost and these would be a great addition to my dessert menu's!

Robin Sue said...

At the pool huh? Sounds like a wonderful Spring so far. I ahve been way out of the loop too with all the May activities around here. The blogs will wait!

Anonymous said...

The blueberry muffins sound wonderful! Do enjoy the nice weather :)

Michelle said...

Nice post. I feel the same way about muffins, they are heavy, but I am definitely going to try this recipe - with all that cream and yogurt, they've got to be good. Also, you have confirmed my feelings on fresh food - and that is that when someone say's they don't like a certain food, it is usually because they have eaten the inferior, "unfresh" stuff. I recall hating spinach as a kid. It wasn't until years later that I realized, this stuff doesn't come from a can. Just like those blueberries, No comparison!

Abby said...

It's FINALLY pretty warm here - I'm jealous of your perfect weather!

I love blueberry muffins most of all!

Joy @ Joy Of Desserts said...

The yogurt is what's making them lighter and I'll bet they ARE delish.

So you have been hiding out at the pool, just when I discovered your blog. Well life and your children are absolutely more important. Enjoy! We'll have your archives in the meantime. ;-)

Nicole said...

Gloria- You will love these. My kids are at such a fun age right now. We are having a blast.

Melissa- If you try these let me know. I am curious how you will like them. And I think you can always cut back on sugar in the recipe too.

Laurie- Go for it!

Robin Sue- Yes. The blogs will have to wait. The kids and I are having too much fun. Soon they will both be in school and homework etc...

5 Star Foodie- We are enjoying it thanks! It is like vacationing in my own home. Except I still have to clean!

Michelle- Fresh food does make all the difference. I am just like you with a few foods I thought I hated as a kid. I didn't like Parmesan cheese because all I had had came from a green can. Now it is a staple in my refrigerator.

Abby- Well I am happy with the weather lately but a bit worried as if it is this hot now... what will the summer bring?? YIKES!

Joy- Yes. My kids will only be young for a short while and we are having so much fun. I wish I had a laptop... then maybe I could do both better.

Anonymous said...

Hi Nicole! It's good to get off the computer every now and then. Your blueberry muffins look delish. My grandson is on a blueberry kick. I love 'em too :)

Abby said...

I'm back visiting. Just to say that have you noticed we have the exact same color palette - almost?

Great minds...

RecipeGirl said...

I love blueberries, and my kiddo is always asking for blueberry muffins! ENJOY our warm weather, and post when you can!

chefectomy said...


I laughed out loud as my little one does the same thing. Don't give up though this technique works. We got mine to try turnips and kiwi this weekend...


Nicole said...

Maryann- Thanks. It is good to be off sometimes. Enjoy real life while it is happening.

Abby- Glad to have you visit! Anytime... anytime! Don't you love great minds! ;)

Lori- We are having fun. Slowing down a bit on the outdoors this week. I am sure it will pick up again.

Marc- How old is yours? The crazy thing is one minute they love something and the next they won't eat it! It is constantly changing.

Lori Lynn said...

Very cute Nicole. We are so fortunate to have such nice weather here in SoCal. YAY for the pool, sounds like you are going to have a great summer.
P.S. The muffins look perfect!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I'll now envision you at the pool having fun with your kids, and you should be doing just that! Good for you Nicole, for getting off the computer, kids grow way too fast!

Jackie said...

I love the addition of yogurt and cream for a moist result. I wouldn't mind one of your blueberry muffins with a nice cup of coffee for breakfast tomorrow morning. Thanks for sharing!

Nicole said...

Lori Lynn- Yes. As a 3rd generation So. Cal girl, I really like it here. And it is shaping up to be a good summer...

Marie- Yes. I figure the blogs and computer will be here years from now but these adorable little (messy) faces will be adults before I know it.

Jackie- The yogurt and cream did make it very moist and coffee with these is a MUST!

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

I love the lemon peel in these. I'm sure it brings a lot to the dish.