Blueberry Muffins with Lavender-Vanilla Icing
There’s a special place in my heart reserved specifically for blueberry muffins.
I’m not really sure who first came up with these things, but they deserve a medal. My family would always eat them warmed with a little butter. When I made these muffins, however, I wanted to try something a little different than the old faithful standby. Sometimes you just need a little something extra…
For those of you who have gardens, you may and may not be done with your summer season, like we are here in the dry Phoenix desert. My garden this year certainly had a good go of it, but eventually when the temperature maintains over 110 degrees for weeks on end, everything starts checking out – no matter how much water you give them.
Against all odds, I have one little lavender plant that just keeps going and going. Day after day that thing Engerizer-bunny’s its way through the scortching heat and keeps giving me great flowers. Of course, seeing it’s tremendous effort inspired me to find creative ways to incorporate more lavender into my cooking. I’ve done a lot with them – homemade teas, attempting to make my own essential oil, etc. – but one day, while having a blueberry muffin craving (which is a more frequent occurrence than I would care to admit) I had this idea: Blueberry muffins + Lavender Icing.
Fresh lavender has an earthy, savory flavor, with a beautiful aromatic quality that packs an extra-unique punch in recipes. Here’s a good rule of thumb when using it: use about 1/3 of the amount of dried lavender as you would fresh – the flavors are more concentrated in dried flowers because the moisture is gone. Here’s another good rule of thumb I had to learn the hard way: thinking big is great for most things in life, but with lavender, start small and work your way up.
You would have laughed if you saw my face when I was experimenting – trust me….go easy at first. Too much lavender will make you feel like you are eating a nice handful of your mother’s potpourri, and I feel pretty safe in betting no one here wants that’s experience. To balance out the strength, and sometimes bitter quality, of the lavender I added a little vanilla extract, and took another sample….and a football touchdown dance happened in my kitchen. BOOM! Best. Icing. Ever.
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 egg
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking sode
- 1 cup (or more) fresh blueberries
- 1 1/12 Tbsp sugar
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp crushed fresh lavender flowers
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Preheat oven to 375. Prep your muffin tin with paper cups of your choice and set aside.
- Combine ½ cup of sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl, and beat - hopefully with a standing mixer, on medium speed. If not, use your elbow grease…
- Continue to beat mixture until it becomes creamy, and then add sour cream and egg, and keep up the beating until everything is well mixed. Remember to scrap the sides of the bowl often.
- Add flour and baking soda into mixture and beat just until it becomes moistened, and then gently stir in blueberries.
- Scoop or spoon muffin mixture into prepared muffin cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until slightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the middle of the muffins comes out clean. Allow muffins to cool for 5 minutes and then remove from pan.
- Next make the incredible complicated icing - by simply mixing all the ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl until you have a creamy consistency that drizzles easily. Drizzle icing over cooled muffins, and enjoy!