Sunday 22 February 2015

Big Blueberry Muffins with Streusel Topping

I’ve never had much success baking muffins. Everyone has that one recipe they just can’t quite master, their Achilles heel if you will. Muffins are mine. Most of my previous muffin attempts either turn out like cupcakes – tasty but not what’s called for, or else dense and dry. After much research and a few not-so-good recipes, I believe I may have finally mastered muffins. Behold the blueberry muffins of delight!

These muffins are light, soft, airy, tender, sweet, blueberry-packed and streusel topped. They have the classic ‘muffin top’ of crisp outer edge that has spilled over the rim of the paper case and a gently doming top. They are not cakey or bready, they are muffins!

I must give thanks to this recipe, which set me on the path to muffin mastery. I used this as my base, adapting it to be gluten free, experimenting with different flours and percentages and types of milk. I incorporated buttermilk for its moist and tender crumb giving properties, replaced lemon juice with fresh vanilla and cut half the blueberries in half for a more even distribution and enhanced juicy purple pockets.

For the streusel topping I added oats and just a hint of cinnamon for a wholesome, slightly nutty crust.

These muffins were amazing. Perfectly soft and tender and I loved the perfumed floral flavour and fragrance that came from using the fresh vanilla. It worked so well with the sweet and jammy blueberries and slight tang from the buttermilk. Inside they had that classic muffin-esque soft open crumb texture.

The streusel topping was slightly fragile and crumbly, but this just means you have little nuggets of oaty crumbs to mop up with your finger after finishing the muffin, as an extra little treat.

I can’t wait to try this recipe out with other flavours, chocolate chip or banana walnut. Hopefully I’ve reached the end of my muffin misfortunes.

Big Blueberry Muffins with Streusel Topping

150g fresh blueberries, half chopped
150g rice flour
25g cornflour
15g tapioca starch
½ tsp xanthan gum
150g caster sugar
2 tsp baking powder
75ml sunflower oil
1 fresh vanilla bean (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
100ml buttermilk
25ml milk
1 egg

Streusel topping
50g light soft brown sugar
40g rice flour
50g cold butter, cubed
¼ tsp cinnamon
20g gluten free oats

Start by making the streusel topping by combining all streusel ingredients in a bowl and rubbing the mixture together using the tips of your fingers until the butter is broken down into tiny pieces and everything is well mixed. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to 200C and line a muffin tin with 9 paper liners.
Cut half the blueberries in half and leave the rest whole, set aside.
In a large bowl add the rice flour, cornflour, tapioca starch, xanthan gum, sugar and baking powder together and mix until well combined. Gently stir through the whole and chopped blueberries.
In a large jug, measure out the oil, buttermilk and milk. Slice open the vanilla bean and remove the seeds. Add to the milk mix along with the egg and beat to lightly combine.
Pour half of the milk mix over the dry ingredients and gently fold together using a spatula. Once mostly incorporated, add the rest of the milk mix and fold together until only just incorporated. Do not over mix, a few lumps are fine.
Spoon the muffin mix into the paper cases, filling almost to the rim. Sprinkle a generous amount of the streusel topping over each muffin.
Bake for 25 minutes until risen and lightly golden brown on top. Remove from the oven and leave the muffins to cool in the tin for at least 20 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
Eat within 2 days
Makes 9 large muffins


Gluten Free Alchemist said...

These look fab Katie! I think you may have mastered them! The fruit is perfectly distributed and they are huge!!! Delicious.

Johanna GGG said...

looks to me like you have mastered muffins - they look delicious and a great little snack for the lunchbox!