My focus on these recipes will spill over into a two-part series for the month of July. (And, yes, I was surprised to find that most hosts take the "B for breakfast" out of the Airbnb experience.)
Lemon Blueberry Muffins makes 16 regular-sized muffins
· 5 tablespoons butter, melted
· ½ cup sugar
· ½ cup flour
· ½ cup oatmeal
· ¼ teaspoon salt
· 2 cups all purpose flour
· 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
· ½ teaspoon salt
· ½ cup butter, softened
· 1 cup sugar
· 2 large eggs
· ½ cup buttermilk
·finely grated zest of 1 lemon
·1 teaspoon vanilla
·2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper liners
2. Make the crumb topping by combining the melted butter, sugar, flour, oatmeal and salt. Stir with a fork until crumbs form. Set aside.
3. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a medium size bowl. Set aside.
4. If using frozen blueberries, place them in a small bowl and return to freezer until ready to use. If using fresh berries, place in a small bowl and set aside.
5. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter for 1 minute until soft and fluffy. Add sugar and continue to beat for 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time and beat just until incorporated. Add buttermilk, vanilla and lemon zest and mix on low until combined.
6. Remove bowl from mixer. Add flour mixture and stir, by hand, until flour disappears. Do not over mix or muffins will be tough. Gently stir in blueberries.
7. Divide mixture evenly in the prepared muffin pan. Sprinkle with the crumb topping.
Bake at 350˚F for 22 to 25 minutes or until light golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. The original recipe calls for making a lemon juice and powered sugar glaze: totally unnecessary.
Adapted from Nancy McDermott’s Southern Cakes, which attributes it to one Cornelia Walker
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
3/4 cup butter, softened, or 3/4 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups sugar
2 to 4 pears firm, ripe pears, depending on size (you’ll need 2 grated cups total, but I don’t recommend you grate them until you are about to use them, so they don’t brown)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Heat your oven to 350°F (175°C) and lightly grease and flour a 10-inch tube pan or two 9-by-5-inch loaf pans.
Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl, and stir with a fork to mix everything well. If you’re using nuts, scoop out about 1/4 cup of the flour mixture and combine it in a small bowl with the chopped walnuts, stirring and tossing to coat the nuts with the flour.
Peel and core pears, then grate them. You’ll want two grated cups total; set them briefly aside. In a medium bowl, combine the butter or oil, eggs, sugar, grated pear, nuts (if using), and vanilla, and stir to mix everything well. Scrape the pear mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until the flour disappears and the batter is evenly moistened.
Quickly scrape the batter into the prepared pans and bake at 350°F (175°C) for 60 to 70 minutes, or until the bread is handsomely browned and firm on top and a wooden skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool the bread in the pan on a wire rack or folded kitchen towel for about 10 minutes. Then turn it out onto a plate or a wire rack to cool completely, top side up. Serve it as is, sprinkle it with confectioners sugar or drizzle it with a simple glaze made from whisking 3 tablespoons buttermilk, a dash of vanilla and 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar together.