There are a lot of really, really good muffin recipes on the internet. I’ve tried many of them. My favorite is Smitten Kitchen’s “Perfect Blueberry Muffins.” She presents a pretty basic recipe and I can guarantee that if you follow it pretty closely, you will get a muffin as dome-shaped and glittering as hers. It’s a great recipe. They’re rich and impressive. They’re the kinds of muffins you take to a new boyfriend’s grandmother. They say, “I wanted to impress you and I did.”
But you don’t always need to say that. Sometimes you want a muffin that just says, “I love your grandson and I’m a good cook.” Or sometimes you just want a muffin that says, to you, “I was ready in 30 minutes and girl you need a muffin.”
When that’s the message you’re going for, go for my grandma’s blueberry muffin recipe. I’m sure this is not a Virginia original. She probably borrowed it from a neighbor, who very likely got it from the back of a flour bag. Nonetheless, for at least 31 years it’s been known as my grandma’s recipe in my family, so I’m sticking with it.
What really differentiates it from Deb’s perfect recipe? No trip to the grocery store and no extraneous kitchen tool (the microplaner for zest). I suppose when I’m more grownup I’ll always have plain unsweetened yogurt in the fridge, but I’m definitely not there yet, so I don’t. But I do always have the baking basics (flour, sugar, baking soda and powder, eggs and milk — milk, because what is coffee without milk? My dad’s coffee).
Combine with a fork in a large mixing bowl*
- 1 and 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (a couple clicks of a salt grinder will do)
Beat together in a small bowl
- 1 egg beaten well
- 1/4 cup oil on top of egg
- 1/2 cup milk (I generally have 2 percent in my fridge and use that)
Wash and pat dry 1 cup of blueberries. **
Pour liquids into dry mixture and combine well.
Fold in blueberries.
Pour batter into lined muffin tins, at least 1/2 full but 3/4 full will produce a nicer dome on top. Top with a heavy sprinkle of white sugar, if you want a crackly, special looking top.
Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Toothpick should come out clean and tops should be toasted gold looking.
*Grandma said to sift these ingredients together, but since she isn’t washing the dishes, I just use a fork
**If I have strawberries going bad in my fridge, I chop those into 1/2 inch rough chunks and use them instead; I’ve also made these for nieces and nephews with NO fruit; this batter is sturdy and will support pretty juicy fruits
Recovering journalist who discovered a life outside of news leaves you time for things like getting angry, cooking and traveling. Plus, hopefully, writing. I’m a wife, dog mom and Washingtonian.