Before my sister left for school four years ago, we took a sunny afternoon to rummage through her recipe collection. She was leaving the continent and had to choose carefully what she brought with her, and what she could put in storage. Her cookbooks would go into storage- except for the ones I lobbied to borrow and the select two or three she brought with her. That left binders and piles of recipes clipped from magazines, shiny store printed recipe cards, handwritten recipes on notepaper, and recipes bubble or laser printed on copy paper or loose leaf. The idea was to discard unwanted, unused, impractical recipes, and keep the ones that she loved, used and still wanted to try. There was also a pile marked for me. I was staying put, and had plenty of space for more great recipes.
That’s when I inherited my sister’s computer print-out on Hilroy paper of the Magnolia Bakery Blueberry Muffin recipe. This is one of my sister’s favourite bakeries. She didn’t need the recipe anymore, she had the hardcover cookbook (going into storage).
Tony doesn’t like blueberries, so I have discovered other wonderful combinations. Cranberries or raspberries are the custom, but I recently discovered that apple butter swirls are quite good too. This recipe is quite sensitive to over mixing, so I didn’t really swirl the apple butter- I just alternated spoons of batter with smaller spoons of appled butter. As the muffin rose, it became a nice swirl.
I make them in extra large muffin tins, so that one works as a light lunch or a big breakfast. Here’s the original Magnolia Bakery recipe on loose leaf:
Magnolia Bakery Blueberry Muffins
3 C flour
¾ C sugar
1 ½ Tbsp baking powder
¾ tsp salt
2 large eggs, beaten
1 ½ C buttermilk
6 Tbsp unsalted butter softened (I usually just melt it)
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
1 ½ C blueberries, lightly coated with flour
1 Tbsp sugar for sprinkling (I don’t bother)
1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Grease 12 cup muffin pan.
3. Mix together dry ingredients, making a well in the centre.
4. Combine liquid ingredients.
5. Pour the liquid ingredients into the well, folding just to combine. Fold in berries, zest, nuts, etc.
6. Fill the muffin cups. If using, sprinkle with remaining sugar.
7. Bake for 20-22 min. (I do 26 min.) until lightly golden.