Anyone who has read this blog even once or twice before knows that I love to bake. Due to my penchant to mess with recipes, baking shouldn’t be a favorite of mine. Baking is very precise. You have to use measuring spoons and get exact ratios for things to turn out correctly. But I’ve found that as long as you know the rules, tinkering with baked goods can be fun! Flavorings are easy to change. Don’t like blueberries? Use raspberries or strawberries. Love cinnamon with chocolate (yes, please!)? Add a teaspoon to your favorite cookie recipe.
What you don’t want to change is the flour/leavening/fat ratio. If you’re starting with an existing recipe, keep the amount of flour, baking soda/powder, and eggs the same. If there’s oil or butter involved, you can do a little tinkering as long as the ratio is the same. For example, I often swap olive oil for butter in quick bread and muffin recipes. It’s more heart-healthy, and dairy-free to boot!
The following muffin recipe is meant to be tinkered with. We love the classic blueberry muffin around these parts, and these are nice and fluffy with a crunchy top and lots of juicy blueberries. But if your family is blueberry-averse, feel free to swap in a different fruit or even some chocolate chips. If you don’t have or want whole wheat flour, just use all-purpose flour for the entire amount. The recipe can be cut in half easily if you don’t want 18 muffins. And if you’re feeling truly decadent, you could add a struesel topping made with butter or margarine and brown sugar. Experiment, and let me know what happens!
Classic Blueberry Muffins
1 c. whole wheat flour
2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
1 c. granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt
4 tsp. baking powder
2/3 c. olive oil
2 eggs (I used 3 tsp. Ener-G egg replacer mixed with 1/4 c. water)
2/3 c. favorite alternative milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract (omit if using vanilla-flavored milk)
1 1/2 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
Large granulated sugar for sprinkling (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line 18 muffin cups with paper liners.
In a large bowl, combine flours, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Make a well in the center and add olive oil, egg replacer mixture, alternative milk, and vanilla extract (if using). Slowly combine wet and dry ingredients until everything is just incorporated (batter will be very thick). Fold in blueberries. Divide batter evenly amongst the 18 muffin cups (each cup will be about 2/3 full). Sprinkle batter with granulated sugar, if desired.
Bake muffins for 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool for five minutes, then remove from pans and cool completely on a wire rack.
If you have any leftovers, these muffins get pretty soggy if you store them in a sealed plastic bag or under plastic wrap. Keep the plastic bag open, or store them under loose aluminum foil to keep the crunchy tops. These muffins freeze very well, but will lose their crunchy top after thawing. You can pop them in the toaster or oven briefly to crisp them back up.