Saturday, June 28, 2014

rainy summer days: (blueberry) brown sugar oat muffins

Rainy day at home and rainy day at Wimbledon.  After an early and damp visit to the Broad Ripple Farmer's Market and the weekend errands, I am ready to settle in and watch tennis even if they are playing only on Centre Court (i.e., the only covered one).  At some point today I absolutely have to work on something or anything organizational and move related, but not apparently right now.  So this is the beauty of the laptop, I can camp out in front of the television AND still get something done.  Fighting a bit of a cold so a little slacking is probably good.  I need to plan a menu for dinner with neighbors Tuesday night with special guests from Australia.  Because the world is crazy like that, Becki and Dave who lived across the street here in Indiana moved to Sydney last year for an international assignment.  So we'll have lots of food and wine and lots to discuss.  Here's what I'm planning so far:  grilled skirt steak with house made steak sauce, summer corn salad with avocado and chimichurri vinaigrette and creme brûlée cheesecake.  Solid foundation.  Pondering appetizers.
So that and this post are my sitting and tennis viewing work for the day.

On my way out the door for my early market run, I grabbed a blueberry brown sugar oat muffin from the freezer.  I baked them earlier this week and passed them around during a visit to lulu to hug some friends and pick up some hemming.  I adapted this recipe from "flour, too" by Joanne Chang of the fresh and delightful flour cafes in Boston.  Her recipe is for cherry muffins, but any fruit in season would work.  I had an extra basket of blueberries, so there you go.  She uses creme fraiche, I used greek yogurt.  She uses whole milk, I used buttermilk and some vanilla to mellow it out.  Mainly because that's what I had on hand plus my options were better nutritionally.  The original recipe calls for preparing the batter and letting it rest in the refrigerator 8 hours or overnight.  I just baked mine straight away and they were fantastic, but it is a nice option to get up in the morning and just scoop batter and bake so you have warm muffins for breakfast.  I'll try it sometime and let you know if there is any difference in texture or height.  Maybe I'll try rhubarb from last week's market trip.

I'll take some process photos next time, but here's the end result in all it's glory.


(Blueberry) Brown Sugar Oat Muffins
3 1/2 C rolled oats (not instant, I like Bob's Red Mill in a big bag)
1 1/4 C greek yogurt (nonfat was just fine)
1 C lowfat buttermilk
1/2 C unsalted butter, melted and cooled (I had very soft butter at room temperature)
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 C sugar (I like superfine)
3/4 C packed brown sugar
1 1/2 C blueberries (or fresh pitted cherries, diced apple, diced peaches, diced pears, cranberries....)
1 1/4 C white whole-wheat flour (or whole wheat flour)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt

brown sugar-oat topping
1/4 C rolled oats
3 T brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon

In a large bowl, stir together oats, yogurt, buttermilk and butter until combined.  In a small bowl, whisk the eggs together and pour into the oat mixture.  Stir in the vanilla, sugar, brown sugar and fruit until well-combined.  In a medium bowl stir together the flour, powder, soda and salt.  Add dry ingredients to the wet mixture and fold until just combined.  Cover and refrigerate batter for 8 hours or overnight if you like, completely optional.  

To bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line the muffin tin cups with paper liners and then coat liberally with non-stick cooking spray.  Scoop the batter into the prepared cup until full (very full to get the muffin crown).  Make the topping by stirring together the oats, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Sprinke the topping evenly offer the muffins.  Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until golden brown and the tops spring back when pressed.  If you start to smell muffin-y goodness at 35 or 40 minutes, quickly check your muffins and remove from the oven if done.  Maybe your tins are smaller or your oven is hotter, but you want a nice moist muffin.  Cool in tin a wire rack for 20 minutes before turning out to cool completely (or eat them warm).  

12 muffins


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