- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 11, 2006

What could be more American and more comforting than hot blueberry muffins? From the looks of the supermarket baking aisles, shoppers have an assortment of blueberry muffin mixes right at their fingertips.

Yet, blueberry muffins have become ordinary because all these mixes taste the same. If you really want to save time and bake up delicious muffins, you’ve got to doctor up the mix, adding, in this case, the juice and zest of a lemon.

With the lemon, these glazed blueberry muffins are far from ordinary and really help pull together a quick Easter brunch.

All you need to add is the usual egg and some milk, plus one large lemon. It will provide you with the 1 teaspoon of grated zest and 1 tablespoon of juice required.

Five time-shaving ways to doctor up a blueberry muffin mix

• Add a cup of fresh blueberries along with the canned blueberries from the package.

• Add 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon to the batter and press your favorite granola onto the top of the muffins before baking.

• Add 1 cup mashed banana and reduce the liquid by 1/4 cup.

• Bake miniature blueberry muffins, and when baked and cooled, thread them onto wooden skewers with an assortment of berries: blueberries, strawberries and raspberries.

• Add 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract to the batter and press sliced almonds onto the top of the batter before baking.

Lemon blueberry muffins with a lemon drizzle

Vegetable oil cooking spray for misting the muffin cups (optional)

1 18.9-ounce package blueberry muffin mix

3/4 cup whole milk

1 large egg

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Lightly mist 12 muffin cups with vegetable oil cooking spray (you’ll need one 12-muffin tin or two 6-muffin tins) or line them with paper muffin cups. Set muffin tins aside.

Rinse blueberries from the muffin mix with cold water, then drain them well and set aside. Place muffin mix, milk, egg and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl and stir with a wooden spoon until ingredients are moistened, about 50 strokes. Fold blueberries into batter until they are just incorporated. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling them 2/3 full.

Bake muffins in preheated 400-degree oven until they are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center of one comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes.

Remove muffin tins from oven and place them on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Invert muffins onto rack (if muffins baked directly in the tin, run a sharp knife around the edges of the muffins first) and let continue to cool while you prepare the lemon drizzle.

Place confectioners’ sugar and lemon juice in a small bowl and stir to combine. Drizzle glaze over muffins, then transfer them to a platter and serve. Makes 1 dozen muffins.




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