I went to Whole Foods a few weeks ago. I only go a few times a year, because we only have 1 in the state of Iowa and it’s 45 minutes from where I live. Plus, it’s cramped and expensive. However, I do like finding some food items that I can’t seem to get anywhere else. I saw blood oranges there and had to have them- I knew I’d seen lots of bloggers making treats with them, so I figured I’d give it a try. They sat in my fridge, haunting me every time I opened the fruit drawer, for weeks…I didn’t want to waste them on a bad recipe, though!
Finally, my mom asked me to bring muffins for this weekend. I was running low on groceries, so all I had were frozen blueberries and those shiny reddish oranges. I finally got up the nerve to cut them open and use them. I’m so glad that I did!
I skipped the blueberries and instead topped each muffin with a raspberry since it’s almost Valentine’s Day. I heard that adding the red juice could turn the muffins a weird grey-blue color, so I chose to make it into a syrup and pour it on top of the finished muffins. Much prettier. It makes the flavor pop a lot better, too! I use the same technique to add amazing citrus flavor and moistness to my Lemon Loaf Cake.
As I was taking pictures of them, a robin came and sat on my patio. Signs of spring in this 20 degree weather? I’ll take what I can get.
*Makes 12 servings
2 ⅓ c. flour
3/4 c. sugar, divided
3 T. poppy seeds
2 t. baking powder
¼ t. baking soda
½ c. butter, melted
3 small or medium blood oranges’ zest and juice, divided
½ c. plain yogurt
1 t. vanilla
Preheat oven to 425 F. Line muffin tin with paper muffin cups; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk flour, ½ cup sugar, poppy seeds, baking powder and soda together until mixed. Set aside. In another medium bowl, whisk together butter, blood orange zest, eggs, yogurt, and vanilla. Pour wet ingredients into flour mixture and gently mix until just combined. Batter will be thick. Spoon into muffin cups, filling mostly full (should fill 12 cups). Bake for 5 minutes at 425 F then reduce oven temperature to 375 F without removing muffins. Continue baking for 10-15 minutes or until toothpick insert in center comes out clean. Meanwhile, mix the blood orange juice with the remaining ¼ cup of sugar in a small saucepan on the stove. Let simmer for 10 minutes; avoid boiling. Remove muffins from oven and use a toothpick to poke holes in each muffin (the more holes, the better!). With a small spoon, pour syrup over each muffin slowly. Let soak and repeat with remaining syrup until it’s gone. Remove muffins from pan; let cool. Store in airtight container for up to 3 days, in the fridge for a week, or in the freezer for 2 months.
Source: Adapted from Prairie Californian