Blueberry Hazelnut Muffins + The World I Miss

by Jen on July 3, 2012

There are a few things I lament about my past life – that season I call B.C. (Before Children). Now that I am a mom of three children, all under the age of 5, I miss being able to just meet up with friends on a whim. I miss just having to grab my skinny wallet and go to the market without having to drag an army of strollers out (I’m an expert at pushing one Maclaren double stroller + a single Bugaboo stroller at the same time). I miss cooking without having to change diapers or to wipe spilt milk in between – in other words, cooking without interruption. Most of all, I miss travelling.

I’m a vagabond at heart, and I’ve always seen myself as a traveller. My husband and I love exploring the world and going on adventures. But now that we have three children, I just feel lucky if we even make it out the door on time! Kidding aside, it’s been quite a busy five years for us, wherein I feel like we are just continuously entrenched in raising kids. Mind you, I love every moment of it, especially when I see their eyes light up like this…

I’ve already accepted that this is how life is going to be in the next how many years…But the really wonderful thing is that my children open me up to a whole new world of adventures. That’s enough for me right now. I look forward to, one day, travelling with my kids and sharing with them the world that I love.

You know what else I love (aside from my family and travelling, of course)? I love waking up with the morning sun softly streaming through the window…and the aroma of freshly baked goods wafting into my dreams…that moment of peace before the kids come barging in…!

Let me tell you, if you want a nice morning surprise, these blueberry hazelnut muffins will do the job! Don’t be fooled, these are not just ordinary blueberry muffins! The addition of hazelnuts imparts a buttery, slightly bittersweet flavour and a richer texture. Research shows that roasting hazelnuts increases their flavour tenfolds, so don’t even think about using raw ones. To take it one step farther, if you can find Piedmontese hazelnuts from Italy, don’t even have second thoughts – use them!

And one more thing: these muffins are already programmed to be made into GLUTEN-FREE goodies (these one I made are the gluten-free version)! Simply replace the all-purpose flour with gluten-free flour (Bob’s Red Mill is a wonderful brand) and retain the same amount of hazelnut flour. Then add 1-1/4 teaspoons of xanthan gum or guar gum to your gluten-free flour. As a general rule, use 1/2 teaspoon of xanthan gum or guar gum per cup of gluten-free flour you use. If you do not add the gum, your gluten-free baked goods will crumble. Also, make sure that your baking powder is gluten-free, if you are going that route!

Finally, to add a sweet highlight to these muffins, I stirred in some hazelnut sugar crumble, made simply by grinding roasted hazelnuts and coarse turbinado sugar together. When baked into these muffins, it gives a crunchy, chewy, sweet finish to each bite. Don’t miss this detail!

Blueberry Hazelnut Muffins (with Gluten-Free Option)
5.0 from 5 reviews
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Recipe Type: Breakfast
Prep time: 30 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 55 mins
Serves: 12 – 18 muffins
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (4 oz / 100 g) roasted hazelnuts
  • 2 1/2 cups (10 oz / 275 g) all-purpose flour + more for dusting blueberries (or use same amount of gluten-free flour + 1 1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup (3 oz / 75 g) confectioner’s sugar
  • 3/4 (6 oz / 170 ml) milk
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz / 55 g) butter, melted and cooled
  • 4 tablespoons (2 oz / 55 ml) roasted hazelnut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups (10 oz / 275 g) fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup (4 oz / 100 g) roasted hazelnuts, ground
  • 4 tablespoons turbinado sugar
Preparation
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F or 200 C degrees.
  2. Using a food processor, pulse hazelnuts in bursts of 3 seconds until they are ground.
  3. Sift the all-purpose flour and add the ground hazelnut, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Mix well.
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, mix eggs with sugar, milk, butter, oil, and vanilla extract. Mix to combine well. (You can also do this by hand).
  5. Add the flour mixture into the wet ingredients and fold quickly.
  6. Toss the blueberries in flour until just coated* then gently fold into the batter. Do not over mix.
  7. Using a cookie or ice cream scooper, fill the muffin tins about 2/3 full.
  8. Pulse the rest of the hazelnuts with the turbinado sugar until finely chopped. Sprinkle over the batter in each muffin tin.
  9. Bake in the middle shelf for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a tester inserted comes out clean.
  10. Serve warm. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days at room temperature.
Notes

*Tossing the blueberries in flour can help prevent the fruits from sinking during baking.

 

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{ 25 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura (Tutti Dolci) July 3, 2012 at 5:30 pm

Hello there, hazelnut sugar crumble. Love these scrumptious muffins, Jen!

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Rowena @ Apron and Sneakers July 3, 2012 at 6:37 pm

And I call it love if I wake up in the morning with this smell permeating the house and my children giving me a nice smile like your baby’s. I like this muffin Jen. It seems really, really good!

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MizzJ July 3, 2012 at 6:50 pm

Mmmm these look scrumptious!

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Patty July 3, 2012 at 7:24 pm

I also like the look of your blueberry hazelnut muffins Jen! They would be lovely to wake up to- fresh baked from the oven. Your photos are beautiful;-)

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Phenomenal Mama July 3, 2012 at 8:33 pm

Your li’l boy is such a cutie.:)

And the hazelnuts and turbinado sugar crumb topping is certainly worth trying.

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Valerie July 3, 2012 at 9:38 pm

These muffins are beautiful, Jen! I’m not even a mom and I sometimes have a hard time fitting things into my schedule (baking, photographing, editing, writing…), I don’t know how you do it so beautifully!

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Choc Chip Uru July 4, 2012 at 1:49 am

These muffins have my heart my friend, hazelnut and blueberries are my weaknesses :D

Cheers
CCU

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Raymund July 4, 2012 at 2:44 am

You continue to amaze me with your work! Look at that recipe and photography

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Sandra's Easy Cooking July 4, 2012 at 12:25 pm

Being a mother myself i totally understand what you are trying to say. We love them, we look forward to next stage of their life and we enjoy watching them grow…and that smile of your baby totally makes me want one more. i miss babies and their little hands and funny giggles. However I look forward to the travels with them without whining :) )
Your muffins are so tasty. I love blueberries! Yummy recipe and pics as always, Jen!

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Lisa (AuthenticSuburbanGourmet) July 4, 2012 at 1:32 pm

These muffins look and sound divine! I am only a mother to a fluffy four legged child, so I understand your B.C. thoughts but can appreciate your devotion to your kids and how much you love them. I have 4 nephews who are just the cutest ever. Hope you have a great rest of the week!!!

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Nami | Just One Cookbook July 5, 2012 at 3:13 am

Even though I have only two kids – 6 and 4, I understand and feel the similar struggle. I consider myself pretty involved in kids activities (I assume you too because you stay home with kids), and I am always there for them. I see other friends’ kids who are older and I feel like they are really more independent. I feel that I only have a few more years to really spend time with my 6 year old son…after that they will be busy on their own…not require too much from me…then I get scared! So I try to tell myself that I can do everything I want to do when that time comes, and at least I can say I did everything I want to do with the kids when they still needed me… Hang in there, and enjoy Jen! It’s going to be much more fun traveling with the kids one day – probably better than when it was without kids. It’s great to experience and share things with own children and I hope you will still share travel stories on your blog because I’ll be reading! ;-) Sorry it’s too long today. I love your blueberry muffins. I have mini muffin pan that I rarely use and it’s time to use. This would be a perfect beginning!

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Mom-Friday July 5, 2012 at 6:04 am

Mucho gwapito!
I wish I can have someone bake us gluten-free delights every week!!! :) JT needs this diet.

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Nancy/SpicieFoodie July 5, 2012 at 7:06 am

We don’t have children yet, and so I take for granted all the freedom I have. My freedom is something I really cherish but I know once we have children, the new life will also be something that I will tremendously cherish. You are my hero for raising 3 young children, running a household, and finding the time to cook and bake fantastic food. Let’s not forget finding the time to snap those gorgeous photos and share them with us. Bravo to you Jen:) The muffins look incredible!

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Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts July 5, 2012 at 10:52 am

I just made banana blueberry muffins yesterday, and now I am have bakers remorse :) These look incredible!

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Riley July 5, 2012 at 2:48 pm

These look so delicious! Where did you get those muffin liners? They are the cutest!

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Suzanne July 6, 2012 at 2:12 am

Jen, these look wonderful, I never have used hazelnuts in my baking, sad I know. But I like the idea of the hazelnuts mixed with the turbino sugar to give a crunch to each bite. I must get some hazelnuts now.

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Priscilla @ShesCookin July 6, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Beautiful post, Jen. The look of love in your baby’s eyes melts your heart. Parenting is all encompassing, but the years fly by and you’ll be able to resume your vagabond ways, in the meantime, it’s fun to share the excitement and wonder of travel and discovery with your children :) My family would love to greet the day with these lovely blueberry muffins – especially ones with a little crunch!

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Jen @ Savory Simple July 7, 2012 at 9:08 am

The muffins look wonderful. I commend you for your hard work as a parent. It’s not easy.

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Magic of Spice July 7, 2012 at 10:39 pm

What a lovely post…BC was a whole different world for sure, even when they get bigger :) These muffins are just a delight!
Hope you are having a lovely weekend!

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Reem | Simply Reem July 8, 2012 at 1:16 am

As a mother I understand what you are saying Jen, Mine are 6 and 4 both boys and super hyper. Sometime I dont even remember if I have brush my teeth or not and yes I am not kidding. But then knowing that time flies fast, I get scared at the thought that soon they will be all grown and living their own life..
I know travelling with kid even to a nearby grocery store is a work itself… But trust me once they get little older it will be easy n they can be little help too..LOL

B/W these muffins look great, I am new to your space and I really like it.. You are doing great and totally inspiring so many!!

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Tuula July 8, 2012 at 5:33 am

Gorgeous Jen, I’m going to try to make the gluten free version. I’ve already got the hazelnut flour, so on a search for the rest! Thanks for another fantastic post :)

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Russell at Chasing Delicious July 8, 2012 at 6:57 pm

These muffins look great! What a combination with blueberry and hazelnut. Yum!

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amelia from z tasty life July 11, 2012 at 1:37 am

Jen: these petite morsels look wonderful. I have two kids and love traveling, so I understand what you mean. But I started traveling with them since they were very very young (I mean barely a few months old) and now that they are 7 and 9 they are amazing little travelers, so curious, so engaged, so interested in new surroundings. So think positive and maybe you’ll be able to travel even earlier than you thought. Actually, the sooner the better, because they get accustomed to it!

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kristy @ the wicked noodle July 13, 2012 at 5:16 pm

I will forever be in awe of your photography. So beautiful. Love the idea of adding hazelnuts to blueberry muffins!

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A Canadian Foodie July 14, 2012 at 11:22 am

What a beautiful site you have! I am going right over to Food Bloggers Canada to suggest they highlight you! The art is as beautiful as your children.
Now that I am here – I will make a pitch…. but that is not how I landed here, or stopped by – and I will be back! I have initiated a Cheesepalooza project for the year starting August 1 – you can read about it on my site. It would be great to have you join us in the making of artisan cheeses at home!
:)
Valerie

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