The cafe that I used to work at made the most amazing muffins with yogurt in the batter. They were really light and fluffy, and it was a great day whenever we ended up with an odd lopsided one which couldn’t be sold and had to be eaten by whoever was working. It’s been a long time since I last made them and sadly both the cafe and the recipe are no more (I was not one of the smart employees who made a personal copy of the recipe before the place closed down).
I got a craving for good muffins the other day, and the pint of blueberries sitting on the counter just asking to be put into our Saturday morning breakfast didn’t help. After half a morning (more like 10 minutes) racking my brain trying to remember the ingredients, I gave up and Googled “yogurt muffin recipe”. There are so many yogurt muffin recipes online, so I picked one and halfway through mixing the batter I realized that this was nothing like the muffin recipe that I knew and loved. I was about to accidentally make the usual dense, crumbly muffins that I know and…don’t love.
Fat make everything better, though (right?), and with a possibly excessive addition of egg and oil, I tweaked that recipe and came up with a recipe that is as good as the good ol’ Zenclay Cafe muffins: light, moist, full of juicy fruit. It’s not quite the same recipe, but it’s equally good and is now my go-to muffin recipe. It’s really basic and works really well with all kinds of fruits and other flavors (Shredded carrots and spices? Lemon juice and poppy seeds?)
Yogurt Muffins – makes about 16
2 c. flour
1 c. granulated sugar
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1 c. plain yogurt
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 t. vanilla or other extract (almond is really good with blueberries or raspberries)
2 c. fresh or frozen fruit, or any other add-ins you want.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl, and stir the fruit in until it is evenly coated in the flour mixture. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, oil, and extract.
Stir the wet ingredients into the dry, and stir just until the mixture is combined. Make sure there are no clumps of flour, but be careful not to over mix. Fill lined muffin tins 1/2 full and sprinkle with turbinado sugar if you want them to have nice shiny tops.
Bake for 20-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Fresh fruit will take closer to 20 minutes, with muffins made with frozen fruit taking a little longer.
Let the muffins cool for 5 minutes in the pans before moving them to a cooling rack. These will keep for a couple of days in an airtight container, but they’re really the best slightly warm from the oven.