Monday, July 24, 2006

Low-Fat Blueberry Muffins

Fresh blueberries are everywhere
and I got mine on sale.

Only .99 cents/pint!

I just love that and blueberry muffins were the perfect way to celebrate!!

Plus, fresh blueberries are packed full of antioxidents. In fact, 6o fruits and vegetables were recently analyzed by researchers at Tufts University for their antioxidant capability. Blueberries were rated highest in their capacity to destroy free radicals. There are way too many health benefits to list in this post, so I'll let you read for yourself from the website I found touting the nutritional value of blueberries.

The timing was perfect to make these muffins. Firstly, because it will make a great posting for Sweetnicks ARF/5-a-day Tuesday evening round-up. Go check it out! Secondly, a recipe for Cook's Country Low-Fat Blueberry Muffins was just re-printed in the Providence Journal's Food section. Here it is:

Cook's Country Low-Fat Blueberry Muffins

1 cup blueberries (I used 1 & 1/4 cups)
2 cups plus 1 Tbl. all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
4 Tbls. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup nonfat buttermilk
1 teaspoon grated zest and 2 teaspoons juice 1 lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Double wrap the blueberries in freezer bags and freeze overnight, as frozen ones won't all sink in the batter. Don't take them out until the batter is made and oven is preheated.
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Spray 12-cup muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray.
Whisk 2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Whisk eggs and brown sugar together in medium bowl until thoroughly combined. Gradually whisk in melted butter, then buttermilk, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla until well blended. Fold into dry mixture with rubber spatula (a few streaks of flour should remain).
Remove blueberries from freezer and toss with remaining tablespoon flour in small bowl. Gently fold blueberries into batter, being careful not to break berries.
Distribute batter in muffin tin and bake until light golden brown and toothpick or skewer inserted into center of muffin comes out clean, 25 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Nutrition information for each of 12 muffins: 190 calories, 4.5 grams fat, 3 g saturated fat.

I have made the original Cook's Illustrated Blueberry Muffins many times. This recipe is different not only because they are low-fat, but because they use a completely different method of making them. In the original recipe, the butter and sugars are creamed together and then the dry ingredients are added in alternately with yogurt. This is supposed to be the key to "big beautiful muffins". In the low-fat recipe, the the dry ingredients are folded in the wet ingredients (non-fat butter milk is used instead of yogurt) quickly leaving "a few streaks of flour" as to not over-blend for fear of a tough, short muffin .

I really liked the muffins, but the next time I make them I will definately add more blueberries. One cup was just not enough to make every muffin burst with berries.

What is your favorite muffin? Do your muffins rise with high tops? If so, what is your trick?


Jen said...

those look wicked good

Annie said...

Thanks! They were.Maybe if your good I'll bring you one...

Jen said...


Dori said...

I did a search for zucchini bread this evening and found sweetnicks. Looks like a fun blog. Your blueberry muffins look beautiful.

Dori said...

What is your favorite muffin? Do your muffins rise with high tops? If so, what is your trick?

I don't know if there is a general one size fits all trick to nicely domed muffins. I have made several vegan muffins that have great rises, I believe my bran muffin with picture is posted on my blog. It is my favorite.

barb said...

Since blueberries are in such abundance right now - I lean toward buleberries. But 2 of my favorites are pistachio cranberry and walnut carrot. Nope my tops are do they do that?

The Cookbook Junkie said...

I've made several great muffins. Lemon-Ricotta and Sour Cream-Bran are two of my favorites. I get all sorts of tops on my muffins, depending on the recipe.

Unknown said...

I only WISH blueberries were 99 cents a pint here. I think our low priced (1.59) blueberries are gone for the season. I don't make muffins much. Really, the only part of the muffin I like IS the top; so, my muffins NEED high tops!

Jen said...

WOW those were damn good!

That was the right formula..


thanks friend

Crystal said...

Geez, Annie - I don't really care for muffins. I guess if they were the only option I'd do it or I'd make them at home.

But, if I had to pick a muffin, I think it would have to be lemon poppyseed. I love lemon and I love poppyseed. I like the lemon poppyseed bread too.

Nah, I don't think my muffins rise with high tops - just medium tops :)