When I was growing up, Happy Days was my favorite show on TV. In addition to thinking The Fonz was the coolest and Potsie was funny, I loved when Richie Cunningham would sing “I found my thrill, on blueberry hill…” Whenever he would start to croon, I would day dream about walking on a big hill full of blueberries, picking fruit and eating all along the way. I was a kid and so didn’t realize the Fats Domino song was being played to show that Ritchie was feeling “frisky.” All I knew was that I desperately wanted to live near a blueberry hill.
When I see blueberries, I still sometimes hum Mr. Domino’s song. I’ve been doing this a lot lately as we are now in the height of blueberry season. In addition to stuffing those plump, round, bluish-purple balls of juicy delight into tarts and pies, I have been making fresh blueberry muffins for breakfast.
Although you can easily use frozen blueberries for muffins, there’s no reason to do that now, when berries are fresh, in season, and moderately inexpensive. Frozen berries are for the winter, when you have to pay little buckets of gold for a half pint of fresh ones. Plus, fresh berries exude bursts of sweetness that are unmatched by their frozen cousins.
Although I sometimes like streusel toppings, when I have the luxury of fresh seasonal blueberries, I don’t want to overshadow the berry flavor with a thick lid of butter and sugar. Crowning each muffin with just a sprinkle of brown sugar is a more simple and straightforward way to get the crunchy muffin top I want, while still highlighting all that blueberry goodness inside.
Here’s my recipe for fresh blueberry muffins. It’s fast and easy enough that you can whip it up in the morning for breakfast. It’s also a great way to enjoy blueberries in the height of the season. I imagine Mrs. Cunningham served these to Ritchie all the time.
Fresh Blueberry Muffins
Makes: 12 medium muffins
Ingredients: 2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp baking powder 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 tsp baking soda 2 eggs 1/2 cup sugar 1/4 cup sour cream 1/2 cup vegetable oil 2 Tbsp milk 1 cup fresh blueberries 1/4 cup brown sugar
Preparation: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. Oil your muffin pan or set in paper muffin liners. 3. In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda. 4. In a separate bowl, beat the sugar into the eggs and mix in the sour cream, vegetable oil and milk. 5. Add in the blueberries. 6. Incorporate the dry mixture into the wet ingredients and gently stir, being sure not to over mix the flour. 7. Divide the batter into the muffin pan. I like to spoon out the batter using an ice cream scoop. 8. Sprinkle brown sugar on top of each muffin. 9. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 – 20 minutes (depending on whether or not you have a convection oven and how hot your oven runs). 10. When you can cleanly run a toothpick through the middle muffin, pull them out and left them cool for few minutes before diving in.