Blueberry Streusel Muffins

29 Aug

The butter is, of course, a necessity. Particularly when these are fresh out of the oven...

These muffins were originally meant to be my attempt at Smitten Kitchen’s rhubarb streusel muffins, but I neglected to take into account the sorry state of my rhubarb….

Let this be a lesson to anyone tempted to freeze their produce indefinitely. Bad idea.

After leaving the rhubarb to defrost overnight in the fridge and finding it waterlogged and impotent when I arose at 7:00 to make the muffins, I moved on to Plan B, and decided to use some of the frozen blueberries that I had also been stockpiling in the freezer, though these had likely only been hoarded for six months. Tops. I hope.

I’ve probably had the berries for at least a year too, in all honesty. Let’s hope big agribusiness is better at long-term preservation of their fruits than my somewhat amateur “sharpie-labelled Ziploc bag system”, which is particularly inefficient when the bag opens at some as yet undetermined point and sits gaping in your freezer for an unknown amount of time. But I digress…

Rhubarb drama aside, these muffins were great. They taste fairly healthy relative to your average saccharine Starbucks fare (which is actually misleading given the amount of butter and sour cream they call for, but I live to pretend to be nutritionally virtuous), and I get the feeling that you could easily sub in any berry you can think of, or even apple chunks, in place of the rhubarb. Without further ado:

Streusel Topping:
1/4 cup  AP  flour
1/4 cup Whole Wheat flour
1 tbsp white sugar
3 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
Pinch of salt
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted 
 
Muffins:
1 large egg 
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp white sugar
5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup sour cream
¾ cup AP flour 
¾ cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup frozen blueberries 

Muffin batter with frozen blueberries & streusel.

Fortunately, these were also fairly easy to prepare:

In muffin tins with streusel topping.

1. Preheat oven to 375 F, and spray a 12-muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray;

2. Mix together dry streusel toppings (AP flour, whole wheat flour, sugars, spices, salt), then stir in the melted butter until the topping is as crumbly as that which rests upon your favorite coffee shop muffin or coffee cake;

3. Mix together dry elements of muffin mix in a small bowl – both flours, baking powder and sugar, and salt;

4. Whisk together wet elements of muffin mix in a medium-large bowl: the egg, both sugars, the sour cream and the melted butter;

5. Whisk together dry muffin ingredients, wet muffin ingredients, and around 1/3 of the streusel topping. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tins, and top each muffin with an equal amount of the remaining topping. As a warning, if you don’t measure out precisely 1/12th of the streusel mixture for each muffin, the resulting streusel imbalance will cause the muffin tops to variously collapse in upon themselves like dying stars or explode forcibly all over the interior of your oven;

5 1/2. Clearly I jest. Just throw some streusel on top of each muffin;

6. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of one of the muffins comes out clean (as a caveat, avoid pricking the bluberries, for they can severely impede your ability to determine the ‘done-ness’ of the muffins…)

7. Consume immediately*, slathered in butter. Share with anyone you wish charm, delight, or guilt-trip in the near future.

* In my world, “immediately” always translates to “After allowing to cool on a rack for 5 minutes”, because burning your tongue directly after baking something, so that you cannot fully savor whatever it was you just invested so much time and effort in fabricating, is a terrible shame.

All lined up on the cooling rack, fresh out of the oven.

Delicious from superior view...

AND from lateral view. Enjoy!

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