Spring time gets everyone excited here in New York, with breathtaking bursts of color coming from blooms on trees and shrubs throughout the 5 Burroughs and upstate. A shrub similar to an azalea often goes unnoticed around here with its clusters of white flowers buzzing with bees, but offers us a sweet reward come Summertime! Often you can find them growing in parks or along hiking trails, but I personally have a few bushes in my garden. They offer beautiful foliage in the Fall, brightly lit with crimson leaves and actually compliment any space throughout the year. The mighty blueberry is often taken for granted, but I'm here to remind you how truly awesome they are.
These plump, juice, and sweet little gems range in color from blue-black to deep purple blue. At 80 calories per cup (go ahead, pig out!) blueberries have the highest antioxidant capacity of all commonly consumed fruit! They are jammed packed with Vitamins C, K, and Manganese. Full of flavonoids, they reduce DNA damage by neutralizing free radicals, reducing oxidation of LDL (bad!) cholesterol, and reduces muscle damage after strenuous exercise, blood pressure, and heart disease. So basically they are little superheroes that you can throw into a smoothie, mash it into a lemonade, or just pop them like candy.
Awesome Blueberry Muffins
- 1 3/4 cups flour (I used all purpose, but you can use any kind you like)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon peel (I used Myer Lemon peel because it was on hand)
- 1 egg
- 1/2cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt (not Greek)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries (wild blueberries are great here too!)
I always use organic, free range, hormone and pesticide free ingredients. I know it can be pricey for some, but the more people who get on board the organic movement, the quicker the prices will come down.
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In this case, try to steer away from convection.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and lemon peel. In a separate large bowl, mix together the egg, brown sugar, yogurt, and vegetable oil.
3. Add the dry ingredients and the milk (alternating) to the wet ingredients, mixing to combine with each addition.
4. Fold in the blueberries with a gentle hand.
5. Make the crumble: Combine the cinnamon, flour, and brown sugar in a small bowl. Add the melted butter and mix to form clumps.
6. Spoon the batter into muffin cups or a greased muffin pan. Top with the crumble. (I filled about 3/4 up the cup, giving me a little bit of a oversized top)
7. Bake for about 20 minutes (start checking at 15 minutes) and remove when muffins are golden brown and the berries are bubbling with juice. Let cool.