Monday, June 15, 2009

Blue Blueberry Muffins

I have recently been reading Joanne Fluke's "Bakery" mystery novels. The third book in the series (there are 11 to date) is called "The Blueberry Muffin Murder" - and the murdered woman is found with one of bakery shop owner Hannah Swensen's new Blue Blueberry Muffins in her hand - a lively search for the murderer ensues - all I can tell you is that the muffin did NOT do it.

All of the books come complete with the recipes for the tasty treats that Ms. Swenson sells in her shop, The Cookie Jar. I haven't tried these out yet, but they sounded good - heavy on the butter and sugar, how could they not be?

Blue Blueberry Muffins

Preheat oven to 375 degrees - rach in middle position.

3/4 cup melted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
1 cup sugar
2 beaten eggs (whip them up with a fork)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (if frozen, do not thaw)
1/2 cup blueberry pie filling
2 cups plus 1 Tblsp. flour (no need to sift)
1/2 cup milk

Crumb topping:
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup softened butter (1/4 stick)
**Now here's where I would add about 1/2 tsp of cinnamon - it would really be good with this muffin)

Grease the bottom only of a 12 cup muffin pan (or line the cups with cupcake papers). Melt the butter. Mix in the sugar. then add the beaten eggs, baking powder and salt and mix thoroughly.

Put one tablespoon of the flour in a plastic bag with your cup of fresh or frozen blueberries. Shake it gently to coat the blueberries, and leave them in the bag for now.

Add half the remaining two cups of flour to your bowl and mix it in in with half the milk, then add the rest of the flour and milk and mix thoroughly.

Here comes the fun part. Add 1/2 cup blueberry pie filling to your bowl and mix it in (Your dough will turn a shade of blue, but don't let that stop you - once the muffins are baked, they'll look just fine. When your dough is thoroughly mixed, fold in the flour-coated fresh or frozen blueberries.

Fill your muffin tins three-quarters full and set them aside. If you have dough left over, grease the bottom of a small tea-bred loaf pan and fill it with your remaining dough.

For the crumb topping, Mix the sugar and the flour in a small bowl. Add the softened butter and cut it in until it's crumbly (you can also do this in a food processor with hard butter using the steel blade)

Sprinkle the crumb topping over your muffins and bake them in a 375 degree oven for 25 - 30 minutes (the tea bread should take about ten minutes longer than the muffins.

When the muffins are baked, set the muffin pan on a wire rack to cool for at least 30 minutes. They will come out of the pan much easier that way.

The author suggests freezing the rest of the blueberry pie filling in paper cups filled with 1/2 cups measured out in each one - Keep them in a plastic freezer bag and that way the next time you want to make some muffins just thaw out one of the pre-measured 1/2 cups for your next batch.

If you are looking for some fun summer reading, bake up a batch of these Blue Blueberry Muffins and sit down with a cup of tea and one of Ms. Fluke's delicious murder mysteries - you won't know where the day went.

Recipe copyright Joanne Fluke, 2002.

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