Tuesday, November 3, 2015

It's a Hard-Knock Life - Double Blueberry Muffins

I can't get out of bed. I can barely sit up, and I can't uncross my legs so I can try to slide off the side. My heart is pounding because I can't yet walk to where I keep my medication.

I just fell asleep while typing that. You want my life, you can have it - cheap.

First order of the day is getting out of bed and taking my morning medications. Still can't move, not sure I can swallow. My head is definitely not working straight. I can't think, I can't read. And is that the gastric pain swooping in for a landing? Why, yes it is! Welcome to my Monday morning nightmare!

The Mets lost the World Series in a 4 game sweep by Kansas City, and I am sad. The Magic lost the third game of the new season to the Chicago Bulls, and I'm getting angry. Don't make me angry, you wouldn't like me when I'm angry. My team is reaching the point of being hopeless, and the season just started. Let's not forget that in 1997 or thereabouts I was voted "Most Likely To Go Postal" by my coworkers and staff at DCF Legal.

Do not go gentle into that good night ...
Rage, rage against the dying of the light

Oh yeah, I'm a mess this morning. So many things to do, and the time to do it, but no strength. All my energy is going towards fighting this pain.

So I make it downstairs and start some food prep. Yes, I can cut open a bag of cole slaw mix for the kraut sveckle. No I cannot open and drain those cans of tuna fish. Yes, I can walk outside to check on my garden, but I cannot lean over to straighten the cones around the cucumbers and I can't walk around the corner to the porch to check on the peppers and herbs, even though I am relying heavily on Horatio Cane.

Horatio Cane, get it? Never mind ...

I got the salad done. I seasoned the chicken. I finished and published yesterday's blog. I sat down. I may never get up. How am I supposed to live like this for the rest of my life?

The muffin recipe came about when I happened to find the most amazing blueberries at BJ's. Apparently Welch's now grows blueberries, and may I say they are the biggest blueberries - yes, as big as grapes. I wanted to make a muffin that was easy and all about the blueberries. Trust me, this is all about the blueberries, and has no need of a crunchy topping or glaze.  Good with black coffee. Also good thing I baked them yesterday.  Today would have been a big nope.

Double Blueberry Muffins

2-9 oz. boxes Jiffy golden yellow cake mix
2-7 oz. boxes Jiffy blueberry muffin mix
4 extra large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 cup half and half (whole milk works fine)
grated peel of one large lemon
3 cups fresh blueberries

This is a double batch, but when you've got gorgeous blueberries in season, you want to use them in the best way possible. So you are going to need two muffin tins; place paper liners in each cup. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the cake and muffin mixes. Put the blueberries in a gallon ziptop bag; remove about 1/4 cup of the dry mix and add it to the blueberries. Close the bag and shake gently so that all the berries are dusted in the mix. (This will prevent them from all sinkinking to the bottom during baking.)

In another bowl, whisk the eggs, then add the sour scream, half and half, and lemon peel, and whisk to combine.  Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry, and with a spatula, mix until just combined.  Add the blueberries and any dry mix in the bag, and fold them into the batter with the spatula.

Divide the batter among the muffin cups, filling each one almost to the top. This gave me 23 muffins, but you may get 24. Or 22. It's all good. Bake for 20 minutes until done.  Let the muffins cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling.  Yes, some of the blueberries will burst with the sheer joy of being such an integral part of such a muffin, so you may need to use a small, sharp knife to loosen the blueberry bond between the muffin and the top of the tin.  Wield a light hand and you will be well-rewarded.

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