If you're a regular reader, you'll know I love fruit in my baking. I’ve made these simple muffins many times, and they’re always great. The first time I made them, I used blackberries, and it’s now my favourite recipe that uses blackberries. But I’ve made them many times since with raspberries – fresh or frozen, depending on the time of year.
It’s a simple recipe, and it’s the lemon that makes them special. Just the zest of half a lemon each in the topping and muffin enhances the berry and makes the muffins unforgettable. This is the kind of comfort food I love best.
Do you ever wonder what I do with all the food I bake? Baking is a passion for me, and it’s easy to end up with much more than our family needs. I’ve made these muffins for several friends lately who are going through difficult times. I can’t always lessen their pain, but I can show them a physical manifestation of my caring by taking them food. And hopefully at the same time, I’m honouring their request to listen to their pain, whether or not it is spoken.
“The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day.”
- David Foster Wallace
Raspberry (or Blackberry) Muffins
1/3 cup sugar
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
zest of one half lemon
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup pecans, finely chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
grated zest of one half lemon
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg, beaten
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries, or 1 1/2 cups frozen raspberries
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 12 standard muffin cups with paper liners or use a silicon tray.
To make the topping, stir together the sugar, flour and zest in a small bowl. Stir in the melted butter then add the pecans and stir to combine. Set aside.
To make the muffins, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, zest and salt. Make a well in the centre and add the egg, melted butter and buttermilk. Stir just until evenly moistened. The batter will be slightly lumpy. Sprinkle with the berries and gently fold in just until evenly distributed,. Take care not to break up the fruit. Do not overmix.
Spoon the batter into each muffin cup, filling it to a bit above the rim of the cup. Top each muffin with the topping, dividing it evenly.
Bake 25 – 30 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the centre of a muffin should come out clean. Let the muffins cool for 10 minutes before removing from the tray.