Sunday, April 3, 2011

Lemon Butter Muffins

Mmmmm....muffins!  Especially sunny lemon muffins topped with a tangy lemon glaze.  These are simple to prepare and are the perfect balance of sweet and tart.  And there's something about lemons that makes me think of Springtime.  It must be the cheerful lemon yellow color.  Bake up a batch to have with a lazy weekend breakfast or serve with brunch.  They're sure to be such a hit that perhaps the saying should go, "When life hands you lemons, make lemon butter muffins."

Lemon Butter Muffins
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 cup milk
1 large lemon, zested and juiced
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice or milk
1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Prepare 12 muffin cups with paper liners.  Prepare the muffin batter.  Place the butter and sugar in a medium sized mixing bowl.  Blend with an electric mixer until mixture is fluffy, about 30 seconds.  Add the egg, milk, 3 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 teaspoon lemon zest (reserve the rest for the glaze) and blend on low speed just until combined.  Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula.  Combine flour, baking powder and salt and fold into wet ingredients, stirring just until combined.  The batter will be a little lumpy.  Spoon batter into muffin cups (each about 2/3 full).  Bake at 400 degrees until the muffins are lightly golden and spring back when lightly pressed, 18-20 minute (you can also do miniature muffins just bake for 8-10 minutes).  Remove from oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pan.  Remove muffins from pan and allow to cool another 15 minutes before glazing.

While the muffins are cooling, prepare the glaze.  In a small bowl, stir together powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or milk.  Add more juice or milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, if needed, to make mixture pourable from a spoon.  Stir in lemon zest.  When muffins have cooled, spoon a teaspoon of glaze over each muffin and let them rest a few minutes to allow the glaze to set.

Recipe adapted from: "Cupcakes! By the Cake Mix Doctor," Anne Byrn (I really like her books and the chapter on muffins is one of my favorites--check it out!)

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