Saturday, September 22, 2012

Berry Streusel Muffins

Happy birthday to me!


I woke up this morning and my husband asked me what I wanted for breakfast that he could make. He knows me so well. Without that caveat, I probably would have suggested something like brown butter glazed cinnamon donuts. I did, however, want muffins so he's going to do the dishes. He also gave me this for my birthday present. It's it sweet?


Thank you, sweetie. I LOVE IT.

However, back to the recipe. This muffin recipe is based again on the Big Beautiful Muffins recipe from the America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook, but includes the streusel topping from the coffee cake I made not that long ago. Since people in my real life keep saying that they don't know how I get my baked goods so light and fluffy, I thought I would do a more detailed description with more pictures than I typically post. I think the main tip I have to offer about almost any baked good is DO NOT OVERMIX. And I'll show you here what I mean by that.

First, get out all your ingredients. This will accomplish several things. First, you'll see if you're missing anything. My lovely sweet husband is not above running to the store mid-recipe for me (thank goodness), but it's really not my favorite way to get something baked! Also, now is a good time to melt that stick of butter. You'll use the additional 2 tablespoons later.


Next, put the dry ingredients in a bowl or stand mixer. I'm using my Kitchenaid, but this recipe comes together pretty easily with just a whisk and a wooden spoon if you want to go that route. Mix the dry ingredients well.


Then mix the yogurt and eggs in a separate bowl using a whisk. That's the melted butter there on the left. It should be slightly cooled before you add it to the mixture so it's good to melt it early.


Next you'll add the yogurt and egg mixture to the dry ingredients.


Do you see how much unincorporated flour there is there? You can click the picture to make it bigger if you can't see it. Here's where you add the melted butter. I would just let that turn seven or eight times on the lowest speed once the butter is added. You should still have a little bit of unincorporated flour when it's time to add the berries.


See that little bit of bright white near the center? That's still a bit more flour. Here's where I pull out the mixer blade and start adding the batter to the muffin tin. Most people would think it didn't look ready, but continuing to mix from this point is what gets you gluey, gummy, dense baked goods.


Now it's time to make the streusel topping. Just add the 2 tablespoons reserved cold butter, the 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, the 1/3 cup of sugar and the 1/3 cup of flour to a small bowl and smush with your fingers until the mixture resembles course crumbs with a few bigger chunks. If you have a pastry blender, you could also use that. I couldn't find mine so I washed my hands and fingers it was.


Then just sprinkle the topping on your muffins, dividing evenly among the muffins and bake!


Yum! Birthday muffins!


Big Beautiful Berry Streusel Muffins

adapted from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook and Cooks.com
makes 12 muffins

3 cups all-purpose flour + 1/3 cup for topping
1 cup sugar + 1/3 cup for topping
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups plain lowfat yogurt (I used Greek yogurt because that's what I had, but regular plain works too)
2 large eggs
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold for topping
1 ½ cups frozen mixed berries, rinsed and drained
½ teaspoon cinnamon for topping

1. Adjust oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 375 degrees. Generously coat a 12-cup muffin tin with vegetable oil spray. This is not the time for fancy cupcake papers. If you must, add them after baking for a cute flower-like effect. Any muffin recipe with yogurt will badly stick to the paper, rendering them unappetizing at best and inedible at worst.

2. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Whisk the yogurt and eggs together in a medium bowl. Gently fold the yogurt-egg mixture into the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined. Fold in the melted butter.

3. Fold in the berries.

4. Use a large ice cream scoop or measuring cup to divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups. Prepare topping per directions below and sprinkle each with approximately 1 tablespoon of the topping.

5. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. Test with a cake tester or toothpick.

6. Let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then flip out onto a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

TOPPING:

1/3 c. all-purpose flour
1/3 c. sugar
2 tbsp. cold butter
1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1. Mix topping ingredients until crumbly, smushing with fingers. Sprinkle over unbaked muffins.


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