Tuesday, July 12, 2016

It's Berry Berry Good

I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook. Mostly, now I'm not very fond of it. There are too many political articles from questionable sources. Too many unfiltered comments that are hateful and ugly. Too many advertisements for things I don't plan to buy. Too many ridiculous videos. But mixed in with all of that stuff I zip past, I can also see who had a new baby, who died, and who is moving to a new house. So, I can't give Facebook up completely.

And then there are the Facebook recipes. There are so, so many of those that they only get a glance. But I am happy that this one caught my eye. Could be because I still had nearly a half gallon of fresh berries left from our berry picking morning last week.

I had never heard of Jordan Marsh, but evidently it was a famous department store in Boston back in the day. I grew up in a very small Southern town. The closest thing we had to a department store was Reimer's, which was basically two stores connected by a doorway. Womens' clothing on one side and mens' on the other side. As a teenager I worked weekends across the street at Hall's 5 & 10. Once I started getting a paycheck (I think it was about $7 a week) I bought my own clothes at Reimer's. Thank goodness for lay-away, because one paycheck wasn't enough for a dress.

Anyway, our little store wasn't big enough to serve treats. For that, you walked next door to the corner drugstore for an ice cream cone.  I'm glad Jordan Marshall's was a huge store with a bakery. And I'm glad that this recipe has been passed around for ages since they closed. This one came from a NY Times Facebook post. If you google the recipe, you'll find other variations from other sources. I'm pretty sure they are all good.

Because my muffin pans are approaching antique age, I think they are slightly smaller than the current regular size ones.  (I have an even older one that is a little smaller than these.) This recipe made 18 muffins for me. And they cooked a little faster. Eighteen muffins meant I had plenty to share. So I packed up a half dozen and delivered them to my favorite older (than us) couple. He's 93 and she's 88. They are both on walkers now, but sharp as a tack. We should all age so well! We had the best visit.

So here is the famous recipe. I will certainly make these muffins again. And again. And again.


1/2 cup butter, softened
1-1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup milk
2 cups fresh blueberries (washed, drained, picked over)
3 teaspoons sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cream butter and 1-1/4 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla.

Sift together flour, salt, and baking powder. (I just used a whisk to mix the dry ingredients.) Add to creamed mixture alternately with milk.

Crush 1/2 cup of berries with a fork and mix into batter. Fold in remaining whole berries.

Line 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners, and fill with batter. Sprinkle the 3 teaspoons of sugar over tops of muffins. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30-35 minutes. (Check after 25 minutes.)

Remove muffins from tins and cool for at least 30 minutes. Store, uncovered, or the muffins will be too moist the second day.

Because I was baking in the morning, I fixed my favorite summer lunch yesterday—a tomato sandwich and fresh cantaloupe. The tomatoes and cantaloupe were just hours off the vines. This is the ultimate summer meal. In fact, it was so good, that we did a repeat for supper.

And having sandwiches again last night (I could only get away with this on the day the first tomatoes are picked) gave me time to bake a blueberry pie at supper time.  Mommy made one last week at the lake. And I couldn't think of a better way to use the very last of the fresh berries.

I was glad to get to the end of the 2 gallons of berries, but now I'm thinking maybe we should pick just one gallon more. Hmmmm.....

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