Blueberry Streusel Muffins

by Food Hound on February 2, 2011

in Breads and Muffins

Winter berries are like wolves in sheep’s clothing. You see them in the grocery store, next to the “$6.99 per half pint” sign. They call to you…

“Come on, you know you want me. I’m one of those super-foods. You haven’t had me since August. Think of all those antioxidants you’re not getting. Try me. I promise I won’t disappoint you.”

So you donate a pint of blood, buy them, take them home… and they taste like nothing.

Winter berries: 1. Food Hound: 0.

Being a crafty Food Hound, I usually come up with some way to salvage my loss. I freeze them for smoothies, or add gobs of sugar and boil away to make a halfway decent compote. I could have saved that pint of blood and headed to the frozen fruit section, but what fun is that? I like to live dangerously and take a risk that maybe, someday, I’ll win the berry battle.

Guess what? I finally won 🙂

My friendly neighborhood Kroger had a pristine display of gorgeous Florida (not too bad, eh locavores??) blueberries this week. And they were on sale. Be still, my beating heart. True to form, I bought them and expected to be let down, per usual. But I wasn’t. They were fabulous. Their texture, their scent… it was like being in the middle of summer, except I was walking around in wool socks and sweatpants.

So of course, I went back and exercised my right to buy as many berries as could appropriately fit in a carrying basket. Now that I have successfully displaced all the beer in the fridge with blueberries, I need to decide what to do with my loot. Eating them on cereal is my preferred use, followed closely by blueberry pancakes using my favorite pancake recipe. Then of course, there is the hallowed blueberry muffin.

The sad irony about blueberry muffins is that blueberries are in season during the absolute worst months in Tennessee to bake anything. So it looks like now I’m in luck! I get to make my kitchen warm as toast and bake some sinfully fabulous blueberry muffins. I have a tried-and-true family recipe, but I feel like I really need to rub it in the face of Lady Luck and take it to the next level. And when I need to take it to the next level, I turn to my beloved Barefoot Contessa.

Only my BC would find a way to make blueberry muffins even more fabulous by adding a streusel topping. Sweet, a little crunchy, and loaded with juicy berries surrounded by a light-as-air, lemon-scented muffin flesh. Ooooo, muffin flesh… how carnal.

Winter berries: 0. Food Hound: 1. Enjoy!

Blueberry Streusel Muffins

Adapted from Barefoot Contessa
Yields 20 muffins
For the muffins:
3 1/2 c AP flour
1 1/2 c granulated sugar
4 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 c buttermilk, shaken
1/2 c (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2 tsp grated lemon zest
2 extra large eggs
2 c fresh blueberries
For the streusel topping:
3/4 c AP flour
1/2 c light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
4 T (1/2 stick) cold, unsalted butter, diced
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line muffin tins with paper liners.
2. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl and blend. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, butter, lemon zest and eggs. Stir the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture with a fork, mixing until just blended. Fold the blueberries into the batter. Don’t overmix! Scoop a mounded 1/3 c of batter into each prepared cups.
3. For the topping, place all the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until the butter is in very small, pea-like pieces. Alternatively, you can use your fingers or a pastry blender. Spoon about 1 T of the streusel on top of each muffin. Bake the muffins for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Chow and Chatter February 2, 2011 at 10:22 pm

these look great I see a lot of folks get tempted and get berries me included


Rita February 2, 2011 at 11:29 pm

These look so good; I do have blueberries calling from thwe freezer; this sound wonderful in the month of February.


coolblogger February 3, 2011 at 12:38 am

These muffins look so tempting. love the dish and thanx for sharing

Reply February 3, 2011 at 2:00 am

Yum, yum, yum! These blueberry muffins look great! I have been going crazy with the great tasting and cheap blueberries I have found here too! I love that I can have them with my oatmeal in the morning! 🙂 Oh summer, hurry up and get here already!


Marie February 3, 2011 at 8:08 am

Looking good Food Hound. I always freeze my berries when they are in season, well the blueberries, raspberries and blackberries anyways. I don’t like frozen strawberries much, so I only enjoy them in season.


Katerina February 3, 2011 at 8:44 am

I will keep saying the fact that we don’t have all these beautiful berries in Greece and perhaps someone will listen and import them because I am really jealous of these beautiful things you make. Great muffins!


A SPICY PERSPECTIVE February 3, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Hilarious, you made me laugh so hard. I’ve bought winter berries so many times thinking, “this time they are going to be different!” The muffins look sensational!


Design Wine and Dine February 3, 2011 at 5:43 pm

Isn’t it funny how that happens!? I am drawn to just about any produce that is expensive…it’s like, “what’s so great about you…I could own you!” Then…I either move on (not getting it) or buy too much and then wonder what the heck to do. Most girls have this problem w/buying shoes…not us I guess!

Your muffins look like the perfect treat! Mmmmmm….mmm!


Mary February 4, 2011 at 1:05 am

Your muffins look wonderful and you sound thrilled and enthusiastic. The muffins must be great :-). Have a good evening. Blessings…Mary


Quay Po Cooks February 4, 2011 at 10:40 am

I know this muffin taste awesome. I made that before. I think adding lemon zest will give it a great flavor.


From the Kitchen February 4, 2011 at 1:12 pm

A tip of the hat to you and the Contessa for a reminder of summer. Kroger, the supermarket of my youth, is nowhere to be found around here. I did run into a Piggly Wiggly in, of all places, Fond du Lac, WI awhile back. However, Costco has provided us with some tasty blueberries. In fact, they were so good, we just ate them by the handfuls. Now I wish I’d made muffins!!



Pam February 4, 2011 at 3:51 pm

Pass the plate please! They look and sound absolutely great!


Joanne February 5, 2011 at 4:22 am

You know, I’ve been seeing blueberries everywhere as well and I can’t imagine how or why because they are supposed to be so unseasonal! What is going on?!?!?

These muffins look fantastic though. i’m glad you got to enjoy them during an appropriate baking season.


Angela February 5, 2011 at 5:02 am

Yum, yum! Wool socks and blueberry muffins, that is a little slice of heaven right there!


My Carolina Kitchen February 5, 2011 at 12:43 pm

You are so right about winter berries. I am thrilled that you won and I know Ina would approve of your muffins. How good is that?


Kathleen February 5, 2011 at 6:02 pm

These muffins look and sound totally fabulous!


Chris February 5, 2011 at 9:03 pm

Ok, I don’t only miss living in Florida for the seafood. Produce too. Thanks for reminding me 🙂


Reeni February 7, 2011 at 1:19 am

My favorite berry of all is the blue one! These are scrumptious little beauties with the streusel topping!


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