Wild Blueberry Muffins

August 24th, 2008  |  Published in All, Fantastic Fruits, Sweets and Desserts, Weekend Projects  |  14 Comments

Wild Blueberry Muffins

Wild Blueberry Muffins
interpreted from ‘Stalking the Wild Asparagus’

2 c. flour (I mixed 1 1/2 c. AP + 1/2 c. whole wheat)
2 T. raw sugar (or sub regular or brown sugar)
1/2 t. salt
2 t. baking powder
scant 1 t. baking soda
1 can wild blueberries, rinsed and well drained (or ~ 1.5 – 2 c. fresh wild blueberries)*

2 T. butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten
3/4 c. buttermilk

Preheat oven to 400.  Grease muffin tin.

Sift flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda together into a large mixing bowl.  Add blueberries, then gently mix to evenly coat the berries with the flour mixture, making sure to separate any clumps of berries.

Add melted butter, egg, and buttermilk, and gently mix until all ingredients are just wet.  Do not overmix!

Scoop mixture into muffin tin, filling half way.  Bake for 16-18 minutes, until tops are nicely browned.

Note:  wild blueberries are smaller and less juicy than domestic blueberries.  If you don’t have access to fresh wild blueberries, I’d recommend searching out high quality canned wild blueberries (check your local natural foods store)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

One of the things I remember most vividly from the summer I spent living in a tent in rural Alaska was how one could drive along a road for miles and not see a single other car.  Not all roads were like this, of course, but the older single-lane state highways often were.  The route between Wasilla and Knik is one of these desolate roads, and it also happened to be the where my camp was located.

The only ‘civilization’ I remember there being between where I was camped and the town 7 miles away was a tiny, unexpected drive-up coffee stand.  This stand in particular was pretty much in the middle of nowhere — there were no houses, no shops — just mile after mile of undeveloped land… and this drive-up coffee stand.  How the location was chosen, I’m not sure, but I can say I was glad to have it within a mile or two of my camp.

Since the days were long, and there weren’t many people around, sometimes I’d walk the mile and half or so from my camp to this drive-up coffee stand and visit with the woman who owned and ran it.  Besides being a kind soul and a joy to talk to, she made the most delicious blueberry muffins I have ever tasted!  What was her secret, I asked her once — ‘wild alaskan blueberries!’, she said.

For a week or two during the summer, she would get her son to run the coffee stand, and she would spend her days foraging wild blueberries (which are actually quite prevalent around that part of Alaska).  She would harvest hundreds of pounds (yes, hundreds of pounds), then either freeze or can them to use in her blueberry muffins for the rest of the year.   If only I had thought to ask for her recipe….

Anyhow, wild blueberries don’t grow around where I live (as far as I know), but in this case, canned wild blueberries will work just fine.  In fact, canned wild blueberries will work better than fresh domesticated blueberries;  usually I’m not one to use canned ingredients, but canned beans and canned wild blueberries are my exceptions.  If you are lucky enough to live in an area where you can forage wild blueberries, then you certainly should!  In fact, you might even want to follow the coffee-stand owner’s lead and forage enough to last you all year!

Split open blueberry muffin

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