Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

I grew up in Massachusetts — land of Filene’s and Jordan Marsh department stores, both chains now long gone. The Jordan Marsh in Braintree in the South Shore Shopping Plaza had a counter where you could buy their famous blueberry muffins. I’m not sure if the muffins were baked there or at their downtown Boston store, but they were the best blueberry muffins to be found in Massachusetts.

Long ago I cut out a recipe for these muffins from the Boston Globe. That clipping is long gone but the recipe is still on an index card. Now that local blueberries are plentiful, this is my go-to recipe for blueberry muffins — a taste of my childhood.

Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins | Grabbing the Gusto

Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins | Grabbing the Gusto

Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins

You’ll need two large bowls, muffin pan and a cooling rack.

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups unsifted flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2-1/2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (for top of muffins)

Preheat oven to 375. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.

In a second bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter and sugar mixture along with the milk and vanilla.

Mash 1/2 cup of the blueberries, and stir in by hand (this will turn batter a light shade of blue and add a touch of blueberry flavor, but this step may be skipped, if you wish). Add the remaining whole berries and stir in gently by hand.

If you have trouble with blueberries settling to the bottom, toss them in flour before adding to the batter. It may just be that your batter is too thin. Another trick is to fill muffin cups 1/4 full with batter that hasn’t had blueberries added to it yet; then stir the blueberries in and continue to fill the muffin cups.

Spray a 12-muffin baking pan. Fill greased muffin cups 3/4 full. Sprinkle sugar on top of unbaked muffins.

Bake for 25-30 minutes. Cool in pan. Run a knife around the edge of each muffin after several minutes to free it from the pan and cool on wire racks. Muffins may be brushed with melted butter and sprinkled with sugar, if desired.

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