Friday, October 7, 2011

Blueberry & Almond Muffins

Every time I see blueberries, my thoughts immediately turn to one of my favourite childhood stories - Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I remember being delighted and very amused as the horrible gum chewing Violet Beauregarde swelled up and turned into a big round blueberry after ignoring Willy Wonka's pleas to not eat his experimental candy! As a bit of a nod to Willy Wonka, I have chosen candy striped wrappers for today's recipe - delicious blueberry and almond muffins.

These blueberry muffins are not overly sweet, and the addition of lemon rind and almond meal gives them a lovely aroma and texture - not to mention a delicious, slightly nutty taste. Although my recipe below says to use a punnet of blueberries, this is only a guide - I actually used more than that, as I wanted the muffins to be more packed with fruit. But use as many as you feel like. The slivered almonds on the top make a lovely crunchy texture, in contast with the soft, moist centres of the muffins.

This recipe is very easy to make - kids could easily put them together. The muffins only take 25 minutes to cook - more than enough time to tell them the cautionary tale of Violet Beauregarde!

Almond and Blueberry Muffins

You will need: 220g self raising flour, 1/2 cup caster sugar, 2 tablespoons almond meal, 3/4 cup milk, 3/4 cup vegetable oil, 1 freerange egg, grated rind of 1/2 a lemon, 1 punnet fresh blueberries, 1 tablespoon flaked almonds.
Method: Preheat the oven to 220C.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, almond meal and lemon rind.

In another bowl, whisk together the milk, vegetable oil and egg.

Make a well in the centre of the bowl with the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Add the blueberries and gently combine, using a spatula. The idea is not to overmix - use a light touch and only mix enough to just combine the ingredients.

Spoon the mixture into a greased muffin pan or patty pans. Sprinkle a few of the flaked almonds over the top of each muffin and bake in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the muffins are golden.


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