Monday, March 14, 2011

It looks like Spring!

After going to town for a meeting this morning, I felt like spring really was right around the corner. We set the time and date for our 4th annual Easter Bunny Parade. It is so much fun to see the kids and grown ups alike enjoy a simple walking parade through the downtown. No big frills or fancy stuff, just a stroll with the bunny collecting some candy along the way from local shops. From Grandmas to babies we have a fun time.  Last year we had a good sized crowd and hopefully it keeps right on growing!
Now I need to make a trip to The Garden Center in town and pick up some potted tulips and hopefully a daffodil to make the house look like spring also. I know this is Wisconsin and we cannot rush spring but inside is another story. So, tomorrow I intend to make some lemon blueberry muffins and start some spring cleaning .  Take down the curtains and lighten up the rooms and make it feel fresh and spring like. Hubby will begin to freak, he hates change.......especially if he has to be somehow involved.

Lemon-blueberry Muffins:

Makes 12 muffins
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 large eggs
the zest and juice of one lemon (approximately 1/4 cup of juice)
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 /2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries (one 10-ounce bag if using frozen berries)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a standard muffin tin with paper liners.
In a large mixing bowl, mix the sugar and butter until it is creamed. Add the cream cheese until it is completely blended with the sugar and butter mixture. Add the eggs, one at a time, until they are incorporated into the batter, then add the zest and pour in the lemon juice. Mix until zest and juice are also incorporated.

Meanwhile, stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium mixing bowl so that the baking powder and salt are evenly distributed, then add the dry ingredients to the wet. Mix until the flour mixture has just been incorporated into the wet, then gently fold in the frozen blueberries. Folding in is just as it sounds: pour the berries into the mixing bowl, then, using a spoon or a spatula, move batter from the bottom of the mixing bowl to the top to cover the berries, mixing those batter-covered berries into the rest of the batter, and repeat until the berries are evenly distributed throughout the batter.

Using two spoons - one to scoop from the mixing bowl, and one to scrape into the muffin liners (as we have ourselves a very sticky batter) - transfer approximately equal amounts of batter to each of the 12 muffin liners.

Bake until the muffins are golden brown, and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin emerges batter-free, 32 to 35 minutes. Allow the muffins to cool in the muffin pan for 10 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack until they are completely cooled.

Try a batch of these and then let me know if you don't feel spring in the air also!

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