This past Monday, my girlfriend and I set off on an adventure with our kids to the Maplewood Farmer’s Market. We gave the kids the freedom to explore, allowing them to choose farm-fresh ingredients to bring home and then cook together that afternoon. With no set plan in mind, they wandered from stand to stand. It didn’t take long for the plump blueberries to spark their idea to make blueberry muffins with a golden honey buttery glaze. On the car ride home, I plotted a recipe that they would soon follow to create a sumptuous, bed and breakfast-worthy treat.
We all had a particularly good time at this compact but well stocked market. Replete with a pickle guy (Dr. Pickle), a high quality meat, fish and bread vendor (Hoboken Farms), three farm stands, a nut and dried fruit company (Gourmet Nuts and Dried Fruit), freshly squeezed lemonade and even a cupcake stand (A’ La Cupcakes, LLC), it was a true one-stop shopping experience. Our girls gobbled down a few too many pickle samples, which I am embarrassed to admit, resulted in a passerby noticing that we were making a lunch out of someone’s samples. I didn’t feel so bad though since my five year-old gave the pickle guy a fair amount of business with his almost bottomless capacity for pickles-on-a-stick.
I love that this market is on Monday afternoons, since it’s a great way to stock up for the week. We came home with purple cauliflower, ground sirloin burgers, yellow doughnut peaches, pickled hot peppers and an awesome smoked nut mix. But the best news . . . our afternoon of fun had just started.
Big Batch Blueberry Muffins
1 cup canola oil
1 ½ cups white sugar
Zest from two lemons
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 cups white flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup light buttermilk
4 cups farm fresh blueberries, washed and rinsed
Honey Butter Glaze
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons honey
First you’ll want to create the glaze by melting the butter together with the honey in a small saucepan. Stir well until the mixture begins to thicken and then set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, measure out the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Mix well.
In another large bowl, beat the canola oil and sugar with an electric mixer. Add the eggs and continue to beat until well combined. Add the lemon zest and vanilla extract. Gradually add the flour mixture, beating continuously. As the mixture becomes a tad difficult to beat, slowly pour in the buttermilk until the batter is smooth. Fold in the blueberries carefully so that they don’t bruise and turn the batter purple.
Fill muffin tins sprayed generously with baking spray three quarters full. Bake in batches for approximately 12 minutes until no longer soft in the middle. Remove from the pan and cool on a cooling rack. When cool, drizzle with the honey glaze.