Here’s my favorite blueberry muffin recipe. It involves making a jam out of some of the fresh blueberries and swirling that into the mix once they are in the pan. You can make that a day ahead if you want. It also goes over the top with the lemon/sugar topping. I think they are perfect, and my family raves about them every time I bake them. I think I got the recipe from Cooks Illustrated.
Why this recipe works:
We didn’t want the fruit in our blueberry muffin recipe to have the lackluster, watery taste so common in many other recipes. Cooking some of the berries in sugar and adding our cooled homemade jam to the batter along with fresh, uncooked berries gave our muffin recipe the best of both worlds: intense blueberry flavor and the liquid burst that only fresh berries can provide.
I make a little more blueberry jam, and put in a heaping teaspoon into each muffin.
Make ahead: Make the blueberry jam, and refrigerate it. Warm it in the microwave the morning you bake it. Mix togther the dry ingredients and store in ziploc baggie.
Makes 12 muffins
If buttermilk is unavailable, substitute 3/4 cup plain whole-milk or low-fat yogurt thinned with 1/4 cup milk.
1/3 cup sugar (2 1/3 ounces)
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated zest from 1 lemon
3 cups fresh blueberries (about 15 ounces), picked over (1 cup for muffins, the rest for jam)
1 1/8 cups sugar (8 ounces) plus 2 teaspoons
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (12 1/2 ounces)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon table salt
2 large eggs
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. FOR THE TOPPING: Stir together sugar and lemon zest in small bowl until combined; set aside.
2. FOR THE MUFFINS: Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. (( set the oven rack in the second from the top. Also, use a pan because some of the blueberries spilled over onto the floor of the oven.)
Butter standard muffin tin .
Bring 2 cups blueberries and 2 teaspoons sugar to simmer in small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, mashing berries with spoon several times and stirring frequently, until berries have broken down and mixture is thickened and reduced to 1/2 cup, about 8 minutes. Transfer to small bowl and cool to room temperature, 10 to 15 minutes.
Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together in large bowl.
Whisk remaining 8 oz. (1 1/8 cups) sugar and eggs together in medium bowl until thick and homogeneous, about 45 seconds.
Slowly whisk in butter and oil until combined.
Whisk in buttermilk and vanilla until combined.
Using rubber spatula, fold egg mixture and remaining cup blueberries into flour mixture until just moistened. (Batter will be very lumpy with few spots of dry flour; do not overmix.)
Following photos below, use ice cream scoop or large spoon to divide batter equally among prepared muffin cups (batter should completely fill cups and mound slightly). (I used my large scoop. Each tin takes 2 scoops…one exactly full, and the other with overage. That should use up the batter.)
Spoon teaspoon of cooked berry mixture into center of each mound of batter. Using chopstick or skewer, gently swirl berry filling into batter using figure-eight motion. Try to push it below the surface.
Sprinkle lemon sugar evenly over muffins.
Bake until muffin tops are golden and just firm, 17 to 19 minutes, (17 minutes wasn’t enough time, try 19 minutes next time) rotating muffin tin from front to back halfway through baking time. Cool muffins in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and cool 5 minutes before serving.
Making Muffins with Blueberry Flavor Through and Through
1. MAKE BERRY JAM Cook half of fresh blueberries into thick jam to concentrate their flavor and eliminate excess moisture.
2. ADD FRESH BERRIES Stir 1 cup of fresh blueberries into batter to provide juicy bursts in every bite.
3. PORTION BATTER Scoop batter into muffin pans, completely filling cups.
4. ADD JAM TO BATTER Place 1 teaspoon of cooled berry jam in center of each batter-filled cup, pushing it below surface.
5. SWIRL INTO BATTER Using chopstick or skewer, swirl jam to spread berry flavor throughout.