When it comes to muffins, there are just muffins, and then there are real muffins. I'm sure you know what I mean, some muffins are short, flat and to be honest, rather ugly, not that this means they don't taste good, but let's be honest, it's more fun to eat something beautiful. Then there are the real deal; tall and handsome muffins with those perfectly domed tops, slightly crispy edges and a dense yet tender crumb that will never be confused with a cupcake. This is the kind of muffin I pine after. It's surprising how difficult it can be to find a recipe for this type of muffin, however, I think I've finally done it. These muffins were gorgeous and delicious, true muffins with the perfectly rounded top, exactly what I've been looking for.
What's interesting about this batter is that it doesn't use any milk or other liquid. The dairy is all yogurt, and a lot of it. This makes the batter super thick, almost like pancake batter, and helps create that beautiful mushroom top that doesn't overflow the muffin tins or flatten out too much. For this go around I made half of the mushrooms just plain, so I could really taste the muffin as is. For the other half, I tried swirling in some homemade strawberry rhubarb jam for a little added sweetness. I topped both with some coarse sugar for a little extra crunch.
The results were simply marvelous. The plain muffins were very nice, simple, slightly sweet and perfect as a basic muffin. The jam swirled version was also quite wonderful, a little extra sweet and sticky, the jam brought the muffin up just a notch. I would definitely do it again. Since the batter was so thick and my jam was really thick, it was difficult to actually swirl in the jam, it mostly just stayed as a blob, but that was okay, it turned out really well in the end. This recipe comes with several delicious looking variations that I hope to share with you all soon.
Bakery Style Muffins
From Food.com, originally from America's Test Kitchen
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 10 tablespoons butter, softened
- 1 cup minus 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups plain low-fat yogurt
Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 375 F (or 450 F for mini muffins). Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in medium bowl; set aside.
Beat butter and sugar with electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternating 1/3 at a time, beat in the dry ingredients and yogurt until a smooth, thick batter just forms.
Spray 12-cup muffin tin with cooking spray or coat lightly with butter. Scoop batter evenly into cups. Bake until muffins are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes for the large muffins (and 10-12 minutes for the mini muffins). Set on wire rack to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove muffins from tin and serve warm.