Sunshine-Filled Orange Berry Muffins

©Muffin on Plate with Pitcher by Dena T Bray
© Oranges by Dena T Bray

It was a bitter cold when we arrived home from a long work weekend away. Layered with piles of clothing but still shivering as the wind blew through my body, I couldn't expect the warm sunshine waiting for me. Imagine my surprise when a box of fragrant Florida oranges arrived on our doorstep, followed by a bag of frozen blueberries in our winter farm share basket. A gift from my aunt, the oranges were just what we needed to fill our empty fruit bowl as we settled in back home, and the blueberries brought back memories of golden summer.

I made these Orange Berry Muffins  to celebrate our good fortune. They are delicate and delicious. Eaten warm, these muffins are perfect for breakfast on a chilly morning. The fragrance of the freshly squeezed orange juice permeates the kitchen as they bake. Try them with a hot cup of coffee, a bit of warm butter or cinnamon sugar and eggs your favorite way. They'll bring you a bit of sunshine with every bite.

I look forward to seeing you in my kitchen, gathering flavors, soon.

Dena

© Oranges! by Dena T Bray
© Muffin Alone by Dena T Bray

ORANGE-BERRY MUFFINS

Yield: 12 Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 12 paper muffin liners or butter for pan
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
  • About ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • ⅓ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For serving (optional):

  • butter at room temperature
  • cinnamon sugar
  • jam

Instructions:

  1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Line a 12-muffin pan with muffin liner or butter liberally.
  3. Pour the orange juice into a large glass measuring cup and pour in enough buttermilk to make 1 cup. Whisk in the eggs, honey and melted butter.
  4. In a large bowl, rub the sugar and orange zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and the fragrance of orange is strong. Whisk in the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and, with the whisk or a rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. Don’t worry about being thorough, the batter will be lumpy and bubbly, and that’s just the way it should be. Stir in the blueberries. Divide the batter evenly between the muffin cups.
  5. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes. When fully baked, the tops of the muffins will be golden and springy to the touch and a thin knife inserted in the center of the muffins will come out clean. Transfer to a rack and cool for 5 minutes before removing from the muffin pan.
  6. Serve warm along with butter, a sprinkling of cinnamon sugar and your favorite jam, if you like.
  7. Enjoy.

Notes:

  1. Like all muffins, these are best eaten the day they are made. If you want to keep them, wrap them airtight and freeze. Defrost and reheat before serving.
  2. This recipe is from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan.
  3. For a full breakfast, serve with hot coffee or tea, freshly squeezed orange juice, and eggs your favorite way.
  4. To make a whole grain muffin, substitute one cup whole wheat flour and one cup corn meal for the all-purpose flour. Leave out the granulated sugar and increase the honey to one cup.