Sunday, August 30, 2009

Huckleberry Heaven

There is nothing better than a Missoula Farmer's Market run in the summer. A couple of weeks ago, I decided to take the plunge and purchase a large quantity of huckleberries to freeze and use through the fall. I froze them in 1 cup and 2 cup amounts. It was actually a really good deal and I will be able to make lots and lots of huckleberry muffins, pancakes, coffee cakes and anything else that strikes my fancy. Yum!

Huckleberries are similar to blueberries, but have a slightly more tart flavor. They are such a Montana treasure and I have many a fond memory of going up to Glacier Park in the summer and having a few huckleberry shakes at camp.

Jon and I are always taking treats in for the nurses, so I made up a batch of muffins and brought them to the night nurses. They take such good care of Jack and it is often hard to think of ways to thank them. Hopefully they enjoyed their little snack and know that we really appreciate all the hard work they do - can't even believe they do those 12 hour shifts!

The muffins turned out GREAT! And yes, I took some pics of them! They could most definitely be used with blueberries if you can't find any huckleberries. I loved the crunchy streusel topping and the big, sweet and tart Montana huckleberries. There is also a hint of lemon in these and I would suggest to double the zest and add some lemon juice right into the batter. Here is the recipe:

Original recipe yield 1 dozen

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups fresh huckleberries
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
5 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter, diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease 12 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
Combine 2 cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in medium bowl. In a small bowl, sprinkle 1 to 2 tablespoons flour over blueberries, and set aside. (This simple trick will keep you from having "purple" batter)
In a large bowl, beat 1/2 cup butter with 3/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, and stir in vanilla and lemon zest. Fold in dry ingredients alternately with milk. Fold in blueberries. Remember, fold gently, don't stir. Spoon batter into prepared cups.
Combine 2 tablespoons flour, 5 tablespoons sugar ,and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl. Cut in 2 tablespoons butter with fork or pastry blender until mixture resembles course crumbs. Sprinkle over batter in muffin cups.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire rack. These muffins freeze really well, and re-heat in the microwave successfully. Hope you enjoy!!

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Julie said...

I am drooling! They look delicious!

Brandi said...

There is nothing better than huckleberry anything! I picked twice this year and got a ton. A great year for the huckleberry. I made a huckleberry pie, which was delicious!!

Barbara said...

Great post! Those look so good.

Lindsay said...

Wow! Those look delicious!

Debbie said...


BethAnn said...

I made these tonight! They are now my favorite recipe... Thanks Jessi!