Wednesday, 5 March 2014
I made these blueberry and green tea muffins just so to used up some sweet blueberries and to try the matcha powder I bought during our trip to Jeju Island last december.
I bought the matcha powder from Osulloc tea museum in Jeju. It was a very nice and beautiful place! When I first came across pictures of this tea farm while I was planning for our self drive trip, I told myself I had to include it in our itinerary.
Even though it was a very hectic day covering the Cheonjiyeon Falls (one of the three famous water falls in Jeju); having a fun tim at the Alive Museum; a leisurely walk on the natural volcanic rocks along the magnificent Yeongmeori coast; we were glad to be able to make a pit stop at this lovely tea plantation. I didn't take any photos inside the museum and cafe as I was busy loading the shopping basket with tea leaves and souvenirs. It was a Sunday afternoon and the place was really crowded with locals. Since we were slightly behind time, we didn't sit down to try the famous green tea rolls at the museum cafe :'( We compensate with take-out green tea ice cream to enjoy while we walked around the museum compound. I also spent some time picking up Innisfree skin care products for my teenager's troubled skin. What to do, this mummy has made herself to believe that those products made with natural volcanic minerals will help her son to achieve flawless, blemish free skin just like the brand's ambassador, Lee Min Ho. Yes, there's a Innisfree house (store cum cafe) within the Osulloc tea museum. Do drop by this tea museum if you plan to visit Jeju Island, especially if you are a fan of green tea ;)
Now back to my baking lab. To minimise shortfalls, I used my all time favourite blueberry muffins recipe as base and added some matcha powder. Nothing too adventurous actually, but it was the first time I had tried match-making blueberries with green tea. A rather bold move coming from someone who has very low tolerance for any kitchen failures.
The recipe is so easy and straight forward that I was rewarded with a tray of sweet smelling homemade muffins within an hour.
The muffins domed and cracked beautifully...and...
they neither look weird nor taste odd as oppose to what I had imagined earlier.
The texture was...'muffin-perfect'...airy, coarse crumbs which tasted soft, fluffy, moist and wholesome. Thanks to my baking friend's heads up, the blueberries from the local supermarket were very sweet, and, whats more, they were on discount. I am sure gonna grab some more on my next trip to the store. It is a pity that the matcha flavour was a little on the subtle side (for me). Its presence was not so prominent but not to the extend of not being able to taste the unique green tea flavour. I didn't want to add too much matcha powder for fear that it will cause the muffins to come out dry. The blueberries and green tea goes well together, it is not a hit nor a miss. These muffins are certainly worth giving it a go if you were to develop a sudden muffin-crave and you happened to have all the ingredients on hand :)
Matcha Blueberry Muffins
(makes 12 regular size muffins)
240ml plain yogurt (regular or low fat)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
60ml canola oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
250g plain flour
1 tablespoon matcha green tea powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
100g granulated white sugar
100g fresh or frozen blueberries
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lightly beaten egg, oil and vanilla extract until just combined.
- Sieve flour, matcha green tea powder, baking powder and baking soda into another mixing bowl. Add sugar, salt and whisk to combine.
- Remove 1 tablespoon of the dry ingredients and toss it with the blueberries (Note: If using frozen blueberries, do not thaw them).
- 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 large 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.
- Spoon batter into paper muffin cups, fill it to about 3/4 full.
- 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.