I’m planning a trip out of the country.
We’re flying off to Beijing in May for the wedding of one of the cutest couples I’ve ever met. They did a cross-continent long distance relationship for several years before finally deciding to tie the knot. And they’re having a huge wedding in Beijing to do it! (They’ll have one in the USA too but this is a wonderful excuse to trek over to Asia so I’m going with it.) Boy and I plan on flying out to Beijing, spending a week or so exploring that area of China, and then roaming on over to Japan for a week or so. I’m quite excited even though it’s months and months away.
I’ve begun planning, reading up on how to do Japan on a budget because Tokyo is supposedly the most expensive city in the world. For two broke-as-a-joke medical students, that doesn’t sound good. But I’m determined to make it work.
Any tips on where to go/eat or what to do in Beijing or Japan are more than welcome!!
All this thinking about leaving the country, however, made me already start to miss home. Planning vacations stresses me out a bit and trying to figure out how to cram an entire country in one week is overwhelming. My train was about to pull into freak-out central and that’s never good.
So I made these blueberry muffins to remedy the situation (my growling tummy was thankful too). Oh goodness did they hit the spot! They were spicy (in that cinnamon sort of way) and homey and all sorts of comforting. I guarantee you they’ll give you warm and fuzzies. The crispy little topping was perfect too, a lovely contrast to the soft, moist interior created in part by the addition of applesauce to the typical blueberry muffin mix.
How can you argue with the simplicity of a great blueberry muffin?
In a bite and a half, all was right with the world.
Blueberry Applesauce Muffins
adapted from epicurious
Makes 12 muffins.
- 1 1/2 c + 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 c light brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 c (1 stick) + 3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 1 c applesauce, unsweetened or cinnamon flavored
- 1 c fresh blueberries, or frozen and thawed
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground allspice
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tbsp quick-cooking oats
Preheat oven to 400F.
For muffins: Toss blueberries in 1 tbsp flour and set aside.
Whisk together remaining flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, whisk together eggs and brown sugar until well combined. Slowly add melted butter, whisking the whole time until creamy. Stir in applesauce followed by flour mixture. Finish by stirring in the blueberries and divide among muffin cups.
For topping: Stir all ingredients together and sprinkle atop muffins.
Bake until puffed and golden, about 20 minutes.
Seriously. Any ideas on what we can/should do in Beijing and/or Japan?
And what makes you feel at home?