Sometimes baking is more an act of comfort than sustenance. These beautifully flavoured and tender Blueberry Almond Muffins offer both a respite from this crazy world and a healthful breakfast or snack.
If you would prefer not to read my thoughts about the state of the internet these days, please click on Jump to Recipe to get right down to the business of this post.
I always find it comforting to walk into my quiet kitchen and put together a batch of muffins, letting them perfume the house as they bake while I have a shower and prepare for my day. And right now, comfort is what I need.
I don’t know about you, but I’m done with the internet today. I’m guessing you might know what I mean. Speculation. Propaganda. Invective. Endless mind-numbing memes. Blind sharing of unsubstantiated information. Negativity. Trolls. People’s darker sides suddenly revealed in the light of day. And an overload of shockingly bad news.
Oh, I know there’s a lot of good stuff out there, but it’s increasingly hard to find in my social media feeds. I yearn for connection. Pictures of the babies and children in the family. Personal updates from family and friends. Kind humour. Stories of all the goodness in the world right now. Beautiful crafts and homemade food. Legions of sewists making masks for others from their own stashes of fabric and notions. Optimism. Positivity.
Sometimes I protect myself by staying away. My head isn’t in the sand. I manage the amount of news and information I get, and seek it out from reputable sources. But sometimes I get sucked into the maw of Facebook and Twitter and then spit out worse for the experience.
Oh, I do what I can to keep my feeds healthy for me. Hide. Mute. Unfollow. Sometimes even unfriend. And I try to contribute in a positive way. But the best thing, right now, is to stay away from the fray.
Instead, I walk into my kitchen and create something that I can share with my family. I sit in my chair and read or knit, the clicking of my needles a meditative chant. I think about how grateful I am for all that I have. People who care about me. My health and that of my family and friends. Ongoing work carried out in the safety of my peaceful home. Good food. The ability to go for a walk in the breezy sunshine of an April afternoon.
And I am reminded of what really matters and all that is good.
The internet can get along just fine without me for the rest of today. I’m here. And I’ve got homemade muffins and the scent of this morning’s pancakes still lingering in the air.
Blueberry Almond Muffins
A few weeks ago I ran across a recipe for Blueberry Almond Muffins by Thug Kitchen in my Facebook feed. Yes, there really is good stuff out there, if you can find it amid all the dross. I rarely make other people’s recipes these days, but I kept thinking about those muffins. In one of my pre-isolation shopping trips I gathered together the ingredients missing from my pantry, and then I made them. And they were good. Very, very good. So good that I posted this photo of them on my Facebook and Instagram feeds.
As you can see, they got a far better photo treatment than my version of the recipe.
But they weren’t quite my style of muffin. Instead they veered a little closer to a cupcake than I like in what I think of as a breakfast item. So, I changed up the recipe to reflect the Urban Cottage Life sensibility, and was delighted with how they turned out.
They’re still tender and beautifully flavoured. But less sweet, and with a different blend of flours. And mine aren’t vegan, not that I have anything against vegan food — there’s a lot of it here, in fact. But I keep dairy milk and eggs in the fridge.
They make me happy. They bring me comfort. And that’s reason enough to make muffins.
Let’s Make Blueberry Almond Muffins
This recipe is slightly adapted from Thug Kitchen's recipe of the same name. If you're looking for a vegan version of the recipe, I definitely recommend theirs. These muffins are tender, full of almond flavour, bursting with blueberries and definitely will add comfort to your day.
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 2 tbsp ground flaxseed
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup grapeseed oil (or other neutrally flavoured oil of your choice)
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1/4 cup cane sugar
- 3/4 cup frozen blueberries
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Place 12 paper liners in a muffin tin.
Add the three flours, flaxseed, baking powder, baking soda and salt to a large bowl and stir to blend. Mix together the milk, oil, egg, almond extract and cane sugar in a large measuring cup. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry mixture and stir just until the batter comes together. There may be some small lumps. Add the blueberries and almonds, and stir just until incorporated.
Evenly divide the batter among the prepared muffin cups. I use a large ice cream scoop for this. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until nicely golden brown and a tester comes out clean.
Cool in the muffin tray for about five minutes, then transfer the muffins to a cooling rack. But you just may want to eat one or two warm from the oven.
More Muffin Madness
Published 2020 04 14