Mornings are for Muffins


I’ve been baking a lot, despite the ridiculous heat wave that Seattle has been going through. It just should not get above 90F here. We’re just not cut out for it… our air conditioners aren’t powerful enough for the upper floors, ice cream trucks don’t roam the neighborhoods, and I’ve never seen a fire hydrant, surrounded by screaming children, spraying water. So turning on the oven is just crazy, but it’s the deal I’ve cut with my daughter. Her dad kept taking her for frappacino’s each morning before dropping her off at my house… something I think is completely inappropriate for a 12 year old. So I gave her the choice of something a bit more healthy by waiting until she got to my house, at which point I’d give her a more nutritional, but still very tasty, treat.

And, she’s taken me up on it. A week now, and no frappacinos! Of course when these fruity, buttery muffins, based on a Macrina Bakery recipe, are one of those morning treats, who can blame her?

Packed with blueberries and currants from the Columbia City farmer’s market and with some honey in place of the brown sugar (I was out), they turned out a beautifully. The berries oozing their sweet nectar throughout. The recipe is exceedingly easy… much simpler and quicker than the Macrina Bakery cinammon roll recipe… but one thing to note if you are cooking from the book, their muffin tins must be HUGE. The recipe claimed to only make 6 to 8 muffins, so I didn’t half it like I usually do. With my standard size muffin tin, my batter made 16 muffins.

Blueberry and Currant Muffins
(adapted from the Macrina Bakery & Cafe Cookbook’s Fresh Fruit Muffin recipe)
makes 12 to 16 medium muffins

3 cups flour
3/4 cup cane sugar
1 1/2 T baking powder
1 1/2 t salt
1/2 cup honey
1 1/2 cup milk
4 eggs
1 T vanilla extract
1 t orange zest
8 T (1 stick) unsalted butter*, melted
1 pint fresh or frozen blueberries
1 pint fresh currants

*I’ve stopped using store-bought butter. Instead, I just use heavy cream and whip it up in my mixer, past the whipped cream stage, until it becomes thick and the palest yellow. It’s really easy, tastes great, and lets you control the amount of salt.

Start by removing the current berries from their stems.

Preheat the oven to 375F. If not using silicone, use a bit of butter to grease the sides of the muffin tin.

Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together into a bowl and set aside.

In another bowl (if you are using a mixer, use that bowl), combine the eggs, vanilla, honey, orange zest and milk, and whisk for about a minute. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low for about 2 minutes or until the dry ingredients are just incorporated. Don’t over mix.

Start slowly drizzling in the butter, continuing to slowly mix. When all the butter is well incorporated (no visible butter streaks), fold in the berries with a spatula. Try not crush them.

Fill each cup of the muffin tin to the top, carefully wiping off any spillage from the top of the pan. Place in the middle rack of the oven, and bake for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle of the middle muffin comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, and then gently loosen the sides with a knife or fork, and turn the whole pan over to remove the muffins. Allow them to cool a few more minutes on a wire rack.

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17 thoughts on “Mornings are for Muffins

  1. These look infinitely better than a frappacino! If you’d like to introduce your daughter to the delights of healthier beverages take her to Panama Tea & Coffee House. I notice it’s listed in your coffee places with free wifi directory but not reviewed. It’s my favourite tea/coffee place in all Seattle. Best iced tea (choose from a variety of greens, whites, oolongs, blacks or herbals) in town, fine tea “lattes” and in surrounds put together by a charismatic proprietor who used to design knitwear for Italian fashion houses. Polite, arty and aesthetically pleasing staff, also. An all-round special experience.

  2. May – Thanks for the tip on Panama Tea & Coffee. I added a bunch of shops in one long afternoon, but certainly haven’t been to all of them. I’ll have to check it out.

  3. Hi L,

    [wow! i’m the 2nd Mae/May in your kitchen tonight! :)]

    We’re definitely channeling… see? Great minds [as they say!].

    That’s one great looking muffins! Love how you captured the oozing goodness and colours. You’re right, peaks or no peaks, they’re gorgeous to eat and to look at.

    I have been on the lookout for a great ‘blueberry muffin’ for ages… [i have to stop at one point buying them from M&S, right?] i’ll have to try yours next! But please, what does 1 stick of butter mean?

  4. Hi Mae! That’s funny. Maybe Mae/May is for Muffins???

    1 stick of butter is 8 Tablespoons. I updated the recipe to make it clearer! Thanks!

  5. Jacelyn – oh, I hope that mistake didn’t cause you any trouble! You are right… I’ve now fixed it. Thanks for letting me know!

  6. I made these the other day and they are very nice 🙂 Well I didn’t make blueberry and currant but blueberry poppyseed and bluberry sultana. I noticed when I was typing the recipe up that you had typed 1 1/2 T baking powder which in your style would mean 1 1/2 tablespoons of baking powder, surely it is meant to be 1 1/2teaspoons?

  7. Hi Helen –

    Nope, I’m pretty sure it’s supposed to be Tablespoon. I was really surprised too… but as I said, this does make a lot of muffins.

    Although, I am out of town right now, so I can’t double check the recipe. I’ll definite do that on Tuesday when I’m back.

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