I can’t help but think of blueberries when I remember summers in New Brunswick. Wild blueberries were abundant in mid-summer and at my house it was as simple as heading out the front door with our buckets. Mom would send my sister and I out to gather the delicious small blueberries that grew abundantly on low bushes. Of course our dog was only too eager to tag along, and thoroughly enjoyed munching away next to us. She seemed to have the uncanny knack to know only to eat the dusty-blue ones, smart dog!
After filling our buckets we would be treated to a bowl of fresh blueberries with milk, and a sprinkle of sugar. That was a great reward for our hard work! Wild blueberries have such intense sweet-tart flavour compared to commercially grown ones.
Another memory that comes to my mind whenever I eat a blueberry muffin is one that still miffs me and at the same time makes me smile.
My mother made the most delicious blueberry muffins ever. I wish she had written her recipe down, but no one seems to have it. Whenever we had company or family stay overnight, they were probably treated to blueberry muffins in the morning. One particular summer my Aunt arrived, along with her two sons who were close to our age, around 11 and 13. My dad was from a very large family, and this particular Aunt we didn’t know very well. Observing my two bored cousins I knew there was going to be trouble sometime that weekend. Have you ever watched the two troublesome Siamese cats, Si and Am, in “The Lady and the Tramp” Disney movie? I probably don’t need to say more! Well, it didn’t take too long until I was proven right.
The next morning mom was up bright and early, making a delicious breakfast. I awoke to the wonderful aroma of frying bacon, and the warm fresh treat of blueberry muffins just out of the oven.
Excited to be having a special breakfast, I headed toward the kitchen, stopping by to feed our two little goldfish along the way. Immediately my mouth gaped open in shock! My dear sweet cousins Si and Am had stuffed sand and grass into the bowl, and killed our fish! I was so upset! Well, of course this meant war!
Sitting at the breakfast table I silently plotted my revenge, becoming more determined by the minute as I watched those two greedily devour most of mom’s delectable blueberry muffins! How dare they.
Well looking back on this story, I can smile, and let’s just say I may have been small but I knew how to use a freshly cut switch! Don’t worry, they outran me before I could do any damage, however, I like to think that every time they eat a blueberry muffin they think of me!
So, even though I don’t have those sweet tiny wild blueberries, I will still try to re-create mom’s mouth watering muffins. I know I would shock my mom if she knew I made a delicious lime glaze for the tops of them, which gives this classic recipe a modern twist.
I hope your family will get to wake up to this wonderful warm, fresh baked treat!
- FOR THE BATTER:
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup melted butter
- ¼ vegetable oil
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- FOR THE LIME GLAZE:
- 1 cup icing sugar
- 2½ --3 tablespoons lime juice (start with 2½, then see if you need more)
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- **NOTE: Instead of the lime glaze you can make a lime/sugar topping and sprinkle on the tops of the muffins before you place them into the oven. Simply combine 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar with the zest of one large or two small limes and sprinkle over muffins.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
- In a bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
- Whisk together in another bowl the sugar, melted butter, oil, eggs and vanilla.
- Add the wet mixture to the dry, and mix JUST until combined. It will NOT be smooth (over mixing will make the muffins tough). Spoon batter into prepared muffin tin, filling half full. Add approximately 6 blueberries to the batter in each cup, gently pushing down a little. Top with remaining batter, and add 6 more blueberries on top, gently pushing down on the berries. (This method works particularly well for frozen blueberries as it keeps the berries from running into the batter.) Alternately, gently fold the blueberries into the batter, then divide the batter into prepared muffin cups.
- Bake at 400 degrees F. for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F. for 5-10 minutes more or until golden on top and baked through. I use my convection oven for the last 5 minutes to evenly brown the tops.
- Remove from the oven and place on rack. Let the muffins rest for 3 or 4 minutes before removing from the pan. If using the glaze, follow directions below.
- LIME GLAZE:
- Combine icing sugar, lime juice and zest in a small bowl. Place a cookie sheet under the rack of the muffins. Spoon a little glaze over the tops of the warm muffins.