Sunday, 19 February 2012

happiness comes from...

These blueberry crumbles muffins were not on my latest to-do list...but I made them anyway...just to use up the leftover crumble toppings, and some very sour blueberries from the apple and blueberry crumbles I made earlier.

I used to think that it is best not to do any baking if I were on a foul mood. Anything that shouldn't go wrong, would go wrong. However, these blueberry muffins accented with orange zest, proved me wrong. The entire process from preparing the batter to putting the muffins into the oven was rather therapeutic. My mind was very focus, calm, and I was able to shut away all the unhappy thoughts. Everything turned out well and the muffins rose beautifully in the oven. The lovely domed crumble toppings made them looked like little cups of popcorns baking away in the oven. My mood lifted up right away...

I baked these ordinary, everyday muffins in these less ordinary, but very pretty paper cups that VB, my cyberfriend mailed to me recently. Thanks VB, for showering me endlessly with beautiful paper liners, cookies bags, cake boxes, etc, etc, etc. Just looking at the muffins made me feel happy, baking is the best therapy for me.

Do you know that foods that are high in carbohydrates increase the production of serotonin in the brain and have a temporarily calming effect on the mind and body? Probably that is why there was something comforting about sinking my teeth into one of these warm, freshly baked muffins. Those soft and fluffy crumbs was no doubt an instant mood lifter.

Besides making a batch of muffins, happiness also comes from sharing and receiving...

I feel so honoured to receive two awards from fellow bloggers recently.

The first award is thefrom Yummy Bakes
'Liebster' means favourite or dearest in German. 

Here are some rules for accepting the award:
Thank the person who gave the award and link back to their blog.
- Copy and paste the award to your blog.
- Reveal the 5 blogs you have chosen to award and let them know by commenting on their blog.
- Hope they pass it forward by accepting and awarding it to bloggers they would like to honour.
So, here are the five blogs that I would to share this award with:
Eat and Be Happy
Min's Blog
The Sweet Spot
I received The Versatile Blogger award from Precious Moments, thanks Edith! To carry on, I am following it to the following bloggers. Please do accept this award and forward it to 10 other blogger friends of your choice.

Angie's Recipes
Blessed Homemaker
Cook With No Books
Cosy Bake
Cuisine Paradise
Elinluv's Tidbits Corner
Epicurean Escapism
Fong's Kitchen Journal
The Weekend Epicurean

To the rest of you who always make it a point to drop by this humble blog of mine, and especially those who care to take the time and effort to pen down their thoughts and comments here, I will really love to share my muffins with you, but before the day comes when we could literally pick up anything from our screens, I can only share the recipe here, if you ever happens to try it, I hope they are able to bring you much joy and happiness.

Blueberry Crumble Muffins

(makes 12 regular size muffins)

for the crumble toppings
40g cake flour
40g almond powder (grounded almond)
40g unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes
30g caster sugar
25g walnuts, coarsely chopped

for the muffin batter:
240ml plain yogurt (regular or low fat)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
60ml canola or corn oil
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
zest from 1 orange
260g plain flour
100g granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
100g fresh or frozen blueberries

  1. For crumble toppings: Place flour, almond powder, sugar in a mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add the cold butter. With a fork, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs (or use fingertips to rub in the butter). Add in the chopped walnuts, toss to combine. (Note: leave to chill in fridge if not used immediately.)
  2. For muffin batter: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lightly beaten egg, oil, vanilla extract and orange zest, until just combined.
  3. Sieve flour, baking powder and baking soda into another mixing bowl. Add sugar, salt and whisk to combine.
  4. Remove 1 tablespoon of the dry ingredients and toss it with the blueberries (Note: If using frozen blueberries, do not thaw them).
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. With a rubber spatula, fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir only until the ingredients are just combined (Note: stop stirring once the flour incorporates into the batter, but do check that there is no pockets of flour at the bottom of the bowl). Gently stir in the blueberries. Do Not over mix the batter. The finished batter should appear thick and lumpy.
  6. Spoon batter into paper muffin cups, fill it to about 3/4 full (Note: I transfer all the batter into a clear plastic bag. Snip away the corner of the bag to make a hole, large enough for the blueberries to pass through, and use it like a piping bag to fill the paper cups).
  7. Top each muffin cup with 1 tablespoon of the crumble toppings. 
  8. Bake in preheated oven at 190degC for about 20 - 25mins or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Recipe source: adapted from Joy of Baking.


Yuri - Chef Pandita said...

Gorgeous muffins <3

鲸鱼蓝蓝蓝 said...


MissB said...

I love muffins and these were simply heavenly!
Kisses :*

CY said...

Your blog posts are always uplifting and I'm always excited when there's new posts! Thanks for sharing so many wonderful recipes!

P.s:the muffins look awesome!

Elin said...

Thanks for the award. Will pick it up soon. Btw , I am sure your boys loved the muffins you baked for them ;) I am drooling for now and the stomach is making noises :p

Janine said...

i love your cupcake liners! they look so pretty, especially matching the blueberries and crumble-topped muffins!

Min said...

Thanks for the award! I am here to pick it up:) me too think that the process of baking is very therapeutic. I love this muffin, will try it out when I have all the ingredients ready.

The Experimental Cook said...

Thank you for the award. I am greatly honored! I love the oozy blueberry juice from the muffin. It's looks sexy!

Im At Home Baking said...

Beautiful, they look delicious!

wana said...


thecoffeesnob said...

Hi HHB- thank you so much for the award! :)

It's certainly not hard to see why these muffins in their gorgeous paper liners were such a great mood booster but I hope you're feeling much better muffins aside.

Angie's Recipes said...

Mouthwatering photos ;-)
Congratulations on your awards and thank you for thinking of me.


Cosy Bake said...

I made some crumble top muffins last night for today's breakfast too!
I can't resist the crumble topoings as always. Mmmmm.....
Thanks for the blog award!

Unknown said...

Your blueberry muffins look beautiful, especially dressed in those colourful paper cups. Thanks for the award too!

happybowl said...

hi HHB, I am so touched by your kind give away. Thank you so very much for your appreciation to my humble blog.

Now for a little tweek,Have you ever thought of substituting blitzed oat flakes instead of flour whenever you make crumble toppings; it is more crunchy and healthy too..(This is a tip from a french pastry chef)

BakingTray said...

These muffins look so warm and fluffy ^^ i can just taste the pop of blueberries :) thanks for sharing! btw I find baking very therapeutic as well! esp if I'm stressed :)

cybil said...

Looks completely yummy!!!

AikoVenus said...

Congrats on the award! ^^ Mm - those muffins look fantastic too! I so love crumbles.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi CY, thanks for always leaving your kind comments :):)

Elin, yes, my boys like these!

Janine, I love the simple design of the paper liners too :)

Min, I am certain you will like these!

The Experimental Cook, the oozy juice reminds me of a baby's drools, haha!

thecoffeesnob, thanks for the concern, yes I am feeling much better...I was going through one of those storm in the cup that came and went...

Angie, you blog is one of the first few that I referred to when I first started out baking, thanks for sharing all your wonderful recipes!

Happy Homebaker said...

Honey boy, crumble toppings is really nice, but I'll have to try to avoid the extra calories ;)

Fong's Kitchen, it is my honour to be able to share the award with you :)

happybowl, thanks for the recommendation, I like baking with oats!

BakingTray, baking is certainly better than retail therapy or munching on junk food to release stress ;)

Joyce @ Chunky Cooky said...

Beautiful muffins.. I am sure they taste delicious too...

Anonymous said...

can i use hand mixer to blend and combine the mixture?
Whenever i mix it, i will either deflate the batter for over mixing or under mix causing pockets of lumps and flour sunk at the bottom.. i tried putting the dry ingredient into the wet one in 3 or 4 interval (not all at 1 go) but failed also...

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, please Do Not use an electric hand mixer as you will over mix the batter and you will end up with tough muffins. Instead use a spatula to 'Fold' the mixture and do not add the dry ingredients in 3 or 4 separate additions. Instead, place the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre, and pour the wet ingredients inside all at once. Then fold with the spatula...sweep the spatula from the side of the bowl then all the way down to the bottom, lift up the batter and bring it to the top, give the bowl a partial turn as you do the folding. You may want to take a look at my video clip on how I did the mixing of a muffin batter, the video was not very well taken, but hope you can get an idea what I meant. See video clip here: (
hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

Hi, just found out ur blog, since i start addicted to bake, i like ur blogs very much.
With nice piture, clear instrucion n tips, n sharing of ur own baking experince, it is really great help for beginner like me.

Nice to know u, i am residing in Malaysia.

Anonymous said...

Hi HHB, congratlations on the award - you truly deserve it and thanks for sharing all the wonderful recipes with everyone. Amy

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

An award coming from you, HHB, I am truly truly flattered. Thank you so much, you've been one of my earliest 启发. I should bow deeply in humble respect.. :)

Baking Fiend said...

I'm loving it! Thanks for sharing your happiness :)

WendyinKK said...

I love those muffin liners and your friend VB is so nice.
It's so true about the power of baking.. it can make or break the day.

Gulchathaii said...

I've been looking for a yummy crumble recipe, yours sounds amazing! Thank you!

Jooolz said...

These look delicious! Do you think they would work with reduced sugar? My mum is intolerant to refined sugar. Do u kno where the cupcake cases are from? Theyre gorgeous!!!

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi Jooolz, you may reduce the sugar a little, but probably not more than 20g...sorry, I am no expert in baking, but if you cut down too much, the muffins may turn out dry. Sugar is used in baking not just as sweetener, but also helps to keep the bakes moist.

My friend bought the paper cups in Hong Kong.

xing said...

How do I keep muffins fresh in this singapore weather?

Happy Homebaker said...

Xing, I store them in air tight containers...

Shuping said...

Very nice muffins!!! Love your recipe too! Can I know where you buy the muffins paper liners. :D

Happy Homebaker said...

Shuping, my cyberfriend sent them to me from Hong Kong.

Anonymous said...

Hi HHB, may I know if I could apply the same recipe and treat them like brownies and bake them in a rectangular tin?

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, you can bake it using a square or rectangular tin, but the baking time will be longer.