Allow me to describe my perfect morning off: sleeping in until a blissful 8:30 (late for me), taking my precious pooch out for a stroll, making jet-fuel-worthy coffee, and having a good yarn with my sister in Texas. But, we haven’t reached the best part yet: picking blueberries from my back yard (in my pajamas, if you must know) and making delicious lemon blueberry muffins for a mid-morning breakfast.
I did toy with the idea of making lemon blueberry breakfast bread instead, but that takes longer, and all of my talking and walking made me ravenous! These muffins are divine in their simplicity: pillowy and soft on the inside, dotted with plump blueberry jewels and crunchy on the outside with caramelized raw sugar.
Whenever you next spot a leisurely morning on your horizon, especially during this blissful blueberry season, indulge in these delicious breakfast treats. And if you eat them in your pajamas at, say, 11 a.m., who am I to judge? Days off should be reveled in. These seasonal, classic muffins achieve just that.
Lemon Blueberry Muffins
Makes 1 dozen.
1-1/2 cup fresh blueberries
zest of one lemon (use a fine grater to remove just the outer yellow portion of the peel; the white part can be bitter)
1/2 cup whole milk
1 egg, room temperature (a trick: you can place whole egg in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes and it will warm up to room temperature)
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 tablespoons
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 stick salted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
a pinch of salt
3 tablespoons raw cane sugar (such as turbinado)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and lemon zest until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat well to combine. In another bowl, whisk together 2 cups of flour, salt and baking powder. Gradually add to the butter mixture, alternating with the milk, until combined. Toss blueberries with 2 tablespoons of flour (this keeps them from sinking) and gently fold into the batter. Spoon into a greased (I use the butter wrapper) muffin tin, about 3/4 full. Sprinkle generously with the raw sugar. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (albeit, a bit blue from those berries), about 20 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes in muffin tin, then release using a knife to loosen the edges and cool on a wire rack. It is also appropriate to devour them with a nice cold glass of milk rather than letting them cool completely.
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The Rev. Whitney Wilkinson is pastor of Cameron Presbyterian Church.