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Oh hey!

Just popping in with some bran muffins.

Peach-blueberry muffins

I know I’m a bit of a baking freak, but I think I reached new lows (highs?) when I baked these up yesterday in the 30-degree heat. But I had a flat of peaches and they’re all pretty much perfectly ripe at this exact moment and I need to come up with ways to use them before I have to toss them. The original plan was a streusel peach cake, or a rustic tart, but by the time I got back from brunch with a friend and did some other chores, it seemed a bit late to be putting together a cake. And pastry? Well, that’s probably not going to be great when your kitchen is that blazing hot. (Plus, you know, pastry. We’re not the best of friends. One day, I hope. One day.)

Anyway, I’ve been making these peach bran muffins of Julie’s for awhile now. They’re what I think muffins should be. Healthy, full of good-for-you ingredients like bran and not too much sugar. Not those cake-in-disguise muffins, which I know are tasty, but really are just cupcakes with a different name.

I grew up eating Sunny Boy Muffins. Warm from the oven, cracked open with a little pat of butter. I can still taste them. (And this serves as a good reminder that I really need to track down some Sunny Boy; there is nothing like the taste of nostalgia.) So, I like a good, solid muffin. And these deliver.

I’ve made them several ways: with buttermilk, with plain yogurt thinned with some milk, with white sugar, with brown and with a mixture of the two. And here’s what I’ve decided: pretty much any way you go, these are good, hearty muffins. But, since I rarely have buttermilk on hand, I usually go with the yogurt-milk mix and I think I like the dual-sugar combination. Julie’s recipe calls for one peach, but I usually double that (or 1.5 that, if the peaches are really big) because I like the extra fruit. And this time around I added in some blueberries, which I just happened to have around. I’m sure other fruit would also be fantastic.

I like making muffins and cupcakes but an ongoing issue I have is that I appear to have some sort of miniature muffin tin. I mean, it looks all normal sized but whenever a recipe says it will make 12 muffins, I end up with anywhere between 16 and 20. At first, I thought it was just me and I was maybe not filling the tins enough. And then I realized it happens so consistently that I’m now pretty confident that it’s this tin. I can’t quite justify getting a new one, though.

All this to say, the recipe says it makes 12 muffins. I got 18 out of it, after dropping the cooking time almost in half. If your muffin tin runs on the small side and you have leftover batter after all the cups are filled, lower the cooking time to around the 13- or 14-minute mark. You can always bake them longer, but you don’t want to overbake them.

OK, go forth, make muffins. Enjoy.

All-bran cereal

Peach

Blueberries

Muffin batter

Peach-blueberry muffin

Fresh Peach Bran Muffins

from Dinner With Julie.

  • 2 cups All Bran cereal
  • 1 3/4 cups buttermilk or plain yogurt, thinned with milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar (white or brown)
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • pinch salt
  • 1 or 2 peaches, chopped (or additional fruit, as desired)

In a large bowl, stir together the cereal and buttermilk; let stand for 10 minutes, until soft. (Sometimes I drizzle in a bit more milk if this mixture seems really, overly solid. Never had any problems with a little additional liquid.) Preheat the oven to 375F.

Stir the sugar, oil and egg into the bran mixture. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and stir until almost combined; add the peach and stir just until blended.

Divide the batter among 12 muffin cups that have been lined with paper liners or sprayed with nonstick spray. Bake for 25 minutes, until golden and springy to the touch. Makes a dozen muffins.

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