The first time I made these muffins I made several modifications to the recipe. I used buttermilk (with additional baking soda as well), some whole wheat flour, and lemon extract in the streusel topping; I also made 12 muffins instead of 10 (per the recipe) and the tops were still overflowing. They were not very good- edible, but just okay. I was really disappointed because they are described as the favorite muffin in a bakery cookbook that I really like.
After going blackberry and raspberry picking with my family, I decided to try to make them again. I usually say that streusel makes everything better, but in this case following the bakery recipe made everything better! 🙂 The beautiful fresh berries were a bonus too. I did use 1 percent milk, vanilla instead of almond extract in the streusel, and I made 16 muffins instead of 10 (per the recipe). I didn’t even substitute any whole wheat flour- very hard for me not to do…. They were DELICIOUS! Perfect size too. This recipe was adapted from More from Macrina: New Favorites from Seattle’s Popular Neighborhood Bakery by Leslie Mackie with Lisa Gordanier. Corn flour could be used in the place of cornmeal, if available.
For the Streusel Topping:
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 T medium-ground cornmeal
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 T chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/4 -inch pieces
- 1/8 tsp vanilla extract or almond extract
For the Batter:
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup plus 2 T medium-ground cornmeal
- 1/4 cup plus 3 T granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 T baking powder
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1 1/2 tsp lemon zest (from about 1 large lemon)
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup plus 2 T whole milk (1 percent is okay too)
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups assorted fresh berries halved (I used blackberries & raspberries)
- 6 T (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. (I use a convection oven.) Grease 16 muffin cups with canola oil or cooking spray. Line with paper liners, if desired. Set aside.
- To make the streusel topping, combine the flours and sugar in a medium bowl. Cut the butter into the flour mixture with a fork or pastry cutter until the mixture has a coarse, crumbly texture. Add the vanilla or almond extract and mix for another 30 seconds. Set aside.
- To make the batter, sift together the flours, granulated and brown sugars, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the lemon zest and mix well.
- Whisk together the eggs, milk, and vanilla in a separate medium bowl.
- Working quickly and gently with a rubber spatula (overmixing can result in tough muffins), fold the egg mixture into the dry ingredients in 3 additions. With the last addition, add the berries.
- Add the melted butter by pouring it in a stream, creating a circle on the top of the batter. Continue to fold gently until the butter is just incorporated. (Some of the dry ingredients may not be fully absorbed.)
- Let the batter sit for 4-5 minutes before dividing; it will thicken up and be easier to scoop.
- Divide the batter among 16 muffin cups. Sprinkle each muffin generously with streusel topping.
- Bake for 18 minutes (on convection), or until the muffins are golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Note: These are best eaten the day they are made, but they can also be wrapped securely and kept in the freezer for up to 2 weeks. To serve, thaw them and reheat in a 325 degree oven for about 8 minutes.