After spending the better part of a lazy weekend watching reruns on Travel Channel, Food Network & Cooking Channel, we got a craving for blueberry muffins. Not the kind that come in a dry mix pouch or the kind made my the local grocery's bakery, but REAL, homemade blueberry muffins. The kind that are light and fluffy in the middle and crunchy and sweet on top. I remembered that, thanks to a co-worker, that I had a bag of Alabama blueberries in the freezer. After a quick scouring of the internet, I came across a recipe using frozen blueberries.
These muffins turned out PERFECTLY; the extra step of making a mini batch of blueberry jam really ups the blueberry flavor, and the lemon sugar topping was crusty and delicious. This will definitely be my new go-to blueberry muffin recipe, and now I can't wait until blueberry season returns (definitely one of the few high points of August in Alabama).
adapted from Cooks Illustrated (May 2009) via Pink Parsley
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
2 cups frozen whole blueberries, divided
1 cup + 2 Tbsp + 1 tsp sugar, divided
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs, room temperature
4 Tbsp (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
For the topping, stir the sugar and lemon zest together in a small bowl and set aside.
In a small. heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine 1 cup of blueberries with 1 tsp sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring and mashing the berries, until the mixture has thickened and reduced to 1/4 cup. Set aside to cool slightly.
Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Rinse the remaining 1 cup blueberries and gently pat dry with paper towels. Toss the blueberries with the flour.
In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and remaining sugar (1 cup + 2 Tbsp) until thick. Whisk in the butter, oil, buttermilk and vanilla.
Gently fold the egg mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just moistened; do not overmix (the batter will be lumpy). Carefully spoon the batter into a greased muffin tin.
Evenly distribute the cooled jam mixture onto each muffin and swirl into the batter with a toothpick. Sprinkle with the lemon zest/sugar mixture.
Bake in a 425-degree oven for 17-19 minutes, turning once halfway through baking, until the tops are firm & golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.