Sunday, November 4, 2012

Blueberry Muffins with Crumble Topping

There are few things more comforting than a blueberry muffin.  My mom used to make blueberry muffins in the mornings before school.  Other days, we would stop by Norman's bakery in Northampton on the way to school and I would always get a blueberry muffin.  They made them with these huge muffin tops that were crusted with sugar.  Oh my I still dream of those!  I was visiting my mom this weekend and baked blueberry muffins for her in her large country kitchen, the old oven warming the room against the cold November morning.  They were incredible.  We ate them hot from the oven and managed to have one each and only split a second one, although I could have probably eaten four of them!

This recipe is adapted from  Makes 8 large muffins (I made 9 from this recipe)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 T baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 cup blueberries


1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 cup cold butter, diced


1.  Combine dry ingredients

2.  Measure 1/3 cup vegetable oil into 1 cup measuring cup

3.  Add egg, and then enough milk to fill the cup

4.  Add to dry ingredients and mix to combine

5.  Add blueberries.  Trick from my mom: If using frozen blueberries, coat them in flour before adding them to the batter to ensure that they do not clump together.  Brilliant!

6.  Spoon batter evenly into greased muffin pan

7.  Combine topping ingredients, pinching clumps together with your fingers (or use a fork) and sprinkle generously over muffins

8.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Serve warm and enjoy!

Kale and White Bean Soup with Kielbasa

Sausage in soup sounds weird... but yum!  This soup is so good!  It is in our new list of favorites.  I dig it.  A lot.  I used a chicken/pork Kielbasa for this and it was super tasty.  Delicious.  Satisfying.  It is even better after sitting a day or two.

Here's the ingredients you need:

2 T olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 celery stalks, chopped
5-6 large carrots, peeled and sliced
1 lb of Kielbasa (or other sausage)
1 cup or more of potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
6 cups kale, stems removed, chopped
4-5 peeled whole plum tomatoes, cut up
5 cups chicken stock
2 cans cannellini beans
chopped fresh rosemary


Heat the olive oil in a large heavy dutch oven over medium heat.  Add onion and celery and cook, stirring occassionally.

While the onion and celery are cooking, stir fry the Kielbasa in a separate pan until browned on all sides.

Add sliced carrots to the onion and celery, and then the cooked Kielbasa.  Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Add the cutup potatoes and cook a few minutes, stirring to combine.

Add the kale and cook, turning until it cooks down some.

Add cut up tomatoes and their juices, and then chicken stock, and water if needed to cover, as well as fresh rosemary.

Bring to a boil, and then cover, turning down to a simmer, and cook for 30 minutes to an hour.   Add cannellini beans, turn up heat and cook uncovered for 15 minutes.

Serve and enjoy!