Blueberry muffins

There’s no special backstory to these muffins or this recipe. I made them for two specific reasons: 1) Yesterday was my friend/co-worker Andrea’s birthday, and I know she likes breakfast treats; 2) I really wanted to use the adorable Christmas paper liners that were a definite impulse buy. It’s reason enough for making these muffins, though!

Blueberry muffins were a treat when I was growing up. I remember only having them on Sunday mornings (though I doubt this is actually true), and they were always the boxed mix that included two tins of real blueberries to add to the batter. Real Maine blueberries, as I recall. Actually, it was because of those blueberry muffins that I learned what “folding” was, in cooking terms, when I was a kid.

The lemon zest really sets these muffins apart from any others I’ve had; it’s just right. Homemade muffins really beat the boxed ones any day–and the good thing is that they’re just as easy to make. Somehow my muffins ended up looks much different than these, but they were delicious and that’s all that matters. I made the half-batch, as Smitten Kitchen suggests, but they went fast once I set them out on the counter at work…definitely will make the full batch next time.

Oh, and apologies for the lull in posting…I misplaced my camera battery charger and, after searching my house high and low, had to buy a replacement. Also, as I made these muffins at 7:30am yesterday, the light wasn’t exactly perfect in the kitchen…many of the photos didn’t turn out well at all so I skimped on photos in this post. To make up for it, here’s a picture of the view out of my living room window right now:

Blueberry muffins

*from here; originally from Cook’s Illustrated, I believe. Makes 10 muffins.

5 Tbsp. butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
3/4 yogurt or sour cream (I used yogurt)
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (I used frozen; also, if you like lots of blueberries in your muffins, I suggest using upwards of 1 whole cup. Several of my muffins were lacking in the proper ratio of blueberries to muffin batter.)

Preheat oven to 395º. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or spray liberally with Pam.

Beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; beat in the egg, and then the yogurt (or sour cream) and lemon zest.

Add the rest of the dry ingredients to a sifter, and sift half of it into the batter. When it’s mixed in well, sift in the other half. Mix just until flour et al is incorporated.

Add the blueberries, and fold in gently.

Pre-folded blueberries.

Fill the muffin cups 3/4 full. (Really–only 3/4 full. I filled a few of mine completely full, and they were too big.) The recipe says this makes 9 or 10 muffins, but if I had filled mine properly, it would have made 11 or 12.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, and let them cool before you dig in.

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