Combining the Ingredients for the Blueberry Lemon Muffins

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 11,644
    Chef Karen Stiegler demonstrates how to combine the ingredients for the blueberry lemon muffins.

    Karen Stiegler: Hi! I am Karen Stiegler and today I am here to talk to you about healthy baking and to show you how to make Blueberry Lemon Muffins. So now we will combine the ingredients. So first of all we have our flour, so we're going to add to medium bowl and have our whisk ready, the all purpose flour, the whole wheat flour, the sugar, the baking powder and our salt.

    So we are just going to whisk those together and once again we're getting air into the mixture and blend them thoroughly. And some people even consider this a form of sifting. Okay, so we can set that aside for a second. Now we can take a large bowl and we can place in here, our skimmed or not-fat milk, our Canola or vegetable oil and our egg and let me just talk to you for a second about cracking the egg.

    If you crack your egg on the edge of your bowl, specially this type of bowl here, it's going to force eggshell back up into the egg and potentially get eggshell into your mixture, so what you want to do, is crack your egg on a flat surface and if you don't want to do it on the counter because you are concerned about getting raw egg on the counter, you can always use a plate or a bowl on the floor and crack it in, crack it in the bowl and drop it into your mixture. And then we're going to use the same whisk and just whisk that together and then we have our lemon zest that we just zested and we're just going to mix that in as well.

    So we have our dry ingredients here and our wet ingredients as well. And I just want to talk for a moment here about some tips for healthy baking. There are lots of different things that you can use to try and make your baking more healthy and I suggest that you look for recipes that have these ingredients. We already talked about white whole wheat flour, you can also use other grains, there is like whole wheat pastry flour, you can sometimes find that. You can use oats, you can use wheat bran, you can use oak bran, things like this. You can even use cereals, these are all really good things to include in your baking.

    Another thing is, is with your oil. Of course, I have already mentioned Canola oil and vegetable oil, but you can use olive oil that has more of a taste to it, depending on what kind of olive oil you choose, but there are recipes out there, specifically asking for olive oil and it adds a nice flavor depending on your personal preference.

    Another thing you can do is, your dairy. You can think about your dairy and in general, I like to use skimmed milk and I like to use plain not-fat yogurt when a recipe calls for yogurt. I find that you know compromise anything for those two products. For other things like sour cream or cheeses if you are making a savory muffin, I go for the low fat version, because I think with sour cream and cheese, you do sacrifice a lot, if you go to the non-fat.

    So the other great dairy product that you think is non-fat or low fat buttermilk and a lot of cake recipes have buttermilk in them. So this is actually a great ingredient, because we're not adding in a lot of fat. Other things you can do in healthy baking are to use nuts in your baking. Nuts that are very healthy and you can even find nut flours or some recipes call for groundnuts.

    Another area that you can look at in your baking is what type of sugar you're using. Of course, we all used the white granulated sugar which is more refined. But if you want to bake a little bit healthier, you can use other types of sugar, such as brown sugar, turbinado sugar, muscavado sugar or molasses, maple syrup, things like this. You want to avoid corn syrup and you want to avoid that high-fructose corn syrup, that's also in the baked goods that you buy at the store. So this way you can have some healthier sugars in your baking.

    For the flavor boosters, you want to use good quality extract, good quality vanilla, you can use oils like lemon oil, you can use zest, you can choose dry fruits like cranberries and dry cherries those are very good and also a very high quality chocolate say 70% of chocolate with a high level of cocoa in it, high percentage and this is the healthiest chocolate for you too and you'll get the most chocolate flavor out of it.

    So those are all ingredients that are really terrific to use in healthy baking. Look for recipes that have those. You have to a little bit careful with substitutions, but look for recipes that have those and a great resource are your cook books or you can go on the web and look for recipes or even go to your local library and check out some books and just look through them and see what you can find.

    So those are good ways if you don't have to spend a lot of extra money but you can find good recipes. So, now that we have, we've already combined our dry ingredients and our wet ingredients and we have our blueberry standing by. So what we are going to do is we're going to dump our dry ingredients all at once into our wet ingredients and this is very important. This is where the process of making a muffin comes in.

    So we're going to just dump that in, then we're going to use a wooden spoon to gently mix it. Now we don't want to over mix it, we want to mix it until it's just mixed and there will still be some lumps in the batter and that's okay, that's good, that's what makes in a muffin. It's different than a cake.

    So all I am doing, dry ingredients are basically mix them and then I have my blueberries. I am going to go ahead and dump those in and then I am going to switch to this rubber scraper and just gently fold and for folding you want to go down underneath and come over and maybe around the sides as well, because you don't want to over mix or over work the dough. That's really important. So fbasically just until we see, that the blueberries are mixed in evenly then we're ready to go. So next we are going to fill our pan and bake our muffin.