Monday, July 25, 2011

BEST Blueberry Muffins!

I have tried DOZENS of blueberry muffin recipes over the years hunting for the perfect muffin. Most of the ones I tried had the consistency of a  biscuit but I prefer cakelike bakery muffins.

Some passed the white flour test but failed miserably when I substituted whole wheat flour. I almost gave up on the possibility of making a delicious 100% whole wheat blueberry muffin, but I'm glad I persevered.
I am happy to say that I have FINALLY found the PERFECT Blueberry Muffin recipe!

And, Yes! It tastes just as delicious when using 100% whole wheat flour!
(top image is white flour, right is whole wheat).

So where did this elusive recipe come from? It originated from a blueberry white chip muffin recipe from but of course I had to modify it to suit my specifications... Here is the modified recipe:

BEST Blueberry Muffins!

2 cups freshly ground whole wheat flour
1/2 cup organic sugar
1/4 cup organic brown sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg
1 cup milk
Zest of one lemon (1 1/2 teaspoons)
1 1/2 to 2 cups blueberries
Walnuts, optional

Streusel Topping
1/3 cup organic brown sugar (or 1-2 tablespoons of honey)
1/3 cup oats (optional)
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line or oil muffin cups (12 to 18).

Cream sugars with butter then stir in vanilla, egg and lemon zest (do not omit zest it adds great flavor). Mix dry ingredients and stir with wet alternately with milk. (I like to add dry ingredients right on top of the wet and just mix it with a fork a little before incorporating into the wet- saves an extra bowl...)

Fold in blueberries and walnuts if desired. Spoon into muffin pans filling 3/4 full. Sprinkle with Streusel Topping. Oats are optional in the topping (pictured in the whole wheat version) and I find it easier to mix with a fork if the butter is at room temperature.

Bake for 22 to 25 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

*I highly recommend using freshly ground whole wheat flour. If you use store bought whole wheat flour you should definitely use King Arthur brand, it's the only one I've used that resembles fresh ground whole wheat.

*You can also use 1/2 cup of honey instead of both sugars. And use 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey in place of sugar for the topping. The flavor and texture isn't quite as rich, but it still works. 
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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Honey-Lime Enchiladas

I saw this recipe on the Sisters Cafe a while ago and recently a few friends have recommended it, so I finally got around to trying it. It was much tastier than I expected! My husband just laughed at me for finding a way to sweeten up everything, even enchiladas...but he enjoyed them!

Cooked, shredded chicken, pork or beef

Honey Sauce
1/3 c. honey
Juice of one lime
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

10oz can green enchilada sauce
Mozzarella & cheddar cheese, shredded
Corn (or flour) tortillas

Mix honey sauce ingredients together with cooked, shredded meat and set aside for 20-30 minutes.

Pour half can of green enchilada sauce in the bottom of 9x13" pan. Heat corn tortillas in microwave 15 seconds or until soft. Spoon meat mixture and shredded cheese in the center of each tortilla, roll up and place in pan. Continue until pan is full. Top with remaining enchilada sauce and smother with cheese.

Bake 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is melted. Then turn oven to broil and continue cooking 2-3 minutes until slightly brown and crispy. Print Friendly and PDF

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Chipotle style burritos: Black Beans, Cilantro Lime Rice, Pico de Gallo & Guacamole

I think I've mentioned before how much I LOVE Chipotle. Sadly, we don't have one near us, so the only time we get to indulge ourselves is when we travel. SO we like to make our own version at home. I am pretty close on everything except the chicken- I am not willing to spend the time to figure out those complex flavors, so for now I just go with grilled chicken marinated with a little lime juice and montreal seasoning or zesty italian dressing.

The cilantro lime rice recipe I posted previously here  the image shown is with barley, but you can also use white rice (pictured above). I also added a little chopped green onion to the version shown above.

Black beans...Squeeze the juice of one lime, stir in some salt, cilantro and cumin to flavor your beans. See below for simple instructions on cooking these in the pressure cooker- takes only 30 minutes!

Simple Pico de Gallo: This is my simply "wimpy" version of pico de gallo- simply chop a bunch of tomatoes, some green onions (including white part), cilantro and juice of one lime. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Guacamole: I never measure these spices, just add a bit here and there until you reach the flavor your tastebuds desire... 1-2 ripe avocados, salt, pepper, fresh lemon or lime juice, garlic powder, diced tomatoes, cilantro.

Serve in warmed tortilla with or without grilled chicken.

Cooking Black Beans in Pressure Cooker:
I have been asked a few times how to cook beans in a pressure cooker. It is really simple. I just take 2 cups of dried beans- sort and rinse, (no soaking necessary) add to pressure cooker and fill with water to the 2/3 full line. Turn stove on medium high and as soon as you hear the whistle, turn it down a bit so that it still whistles softly but isn't steaming it's top off. Continue cooking for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it sit on the burner while you prepare the rest of your food. I, as you know, am impatient and if I need them fast, I use a fork or knife to lift the release valve and let the excess steam out. Once the steam is all out you can open it, rinse the beans and eat.

Fresh cooked beans have a different flavor so you may find that you need to salt them, although after time you'll get used to not having so much salt on them. There is a great chart about how long to cook different types of beans at this website

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