Monday, August 10, 2009

How to be...

Followers of this blog know this whole thing started -- the loving cooking and food thing -- when I came upon Nigella Lawson in the cyberworld just about 5 years ago. I have cooked countless Nigella recipes, seen countless episodes, 'talked' to countless fans. She was a huge part of my world for a long time.... and then I stopped cooking and keeping in touch with friends. I don't know what Nigella or her fans are up to now. But I hope they are still out there reading this blog sometimes, even though I am rare to post on it.

But I went blueberry picking the other day -- on such a hot and sunny day, you can't even imagine. The blueberries were ripe and beautiful. I am not a fruit eater. I admit it. I'd rather make jam or ice cream with fruit than actually eat. Which explains a lot, believe me. But this time, baking was on my mind. No one, and trust me when I say this, no one makes better muffins than Nigella. It was only natural I turned to her How To Be a Domestic Goddess for inspiration. Blueberry muffins it is. This recipe worked because it does a lot with limited ingredients, and with limited fridges, which I have had in the recent past. If you don't have much butter, you can get away with it since you use less than a stick. If you don't have buttermilk, natural yogurt and lowfat milk will do. If you don't have blueberries, just about anything else works. A lot of people have said that the recipe asks for too many blueberries, but I think 7 ounces is the perfect amount, and if you don't want a lot of blueberries, or any other berries, in your muffins, then why the heck are you eating it? The recipe gives orange zest as an option. I didn't have it, but had some expensive lemon oil I've only used once in a blueberry moon, so I used that. :)

The timing of the baking is spot on. The muffins came out puffy, soft, beautifully colored. Make these! Use frozen berries if you aren't in the season for picking your own. These muffins would make any house a home.


Anonymous said...

I'm still here reading and they look awesome!

Nigella Fan said...

Me too and they look fab! I really miss those days of and I think it all stopped for a lot of us when the forum closed. There are a new bunch of fans there now, I lurk sometimes but cant bring myself to post.

Still its nice to see some of us original around :)


Jo said...

Hi Ilana,
I'm still here too!
Your muffins look delicious. And how I'd love to go blueberry picking, I LOVE blueberries!!
In the UK it's blackberry season, so I'll be diving into the bushes soon ;-)
Nice to see you're still cooking up a storm. Hope all's well with you!
Jo (Toots)

Anonymous said...

Hi Ilana,
I remember you from the Nigella forum too. I was more of a lurker but I was addicted and used to read all the time. It's too bad they closed the forum like that. Made no sense for them to do it as it was very popular.