blissful eats with tina jeffers: Blackberry hazelnut muffins

We have an amazing bakery in town called Bakeshop owned by James Beard award-wining cookbook author Kim Boyce.  She has a unique approach to cooking with whole grains and her recipes are deliciously original.  I had some blackberries in the fridge that I needed to use up and I remembered that she had a hazelnut muffin recipe that I have always wanted to try and I thought the blackberries would go well with the flavor of the hazelnuts.  She has some great baking tips as well in her book Good to the Grain and every recipe I have tried has been a revelation. 

I did make a few changes to the recipe mainly since these were a spur of the moment decision and I adapted it to fit ingredients I already had on hand.  These muffins do taste best the day they are made but I enjoyed them the next day after a quick re-heat in the microwave.  Kim recommends only filling every other muffin cup so that you’ll get nicer domes on the muffins.  It does mean that you will need two muffin tins for this recipe but they will still work just fine with one if that’s all you have. 

Blackberry hazelnut muffins


Adapted from Good to the Grain


Makes 12




6 tablespoons unsalted butter


for the topping:


½ cup raw hazelnuts, finely chopped

½ teaspoon cinnamon

¼ cup turbanido sugar



Dry mix:

1 ½ cups plus whole-wheat pastry flour

¾ cups hazelnut meal

½ cup natural cane sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon kosher salt


Wet mix:


1 cup buttermilk

½ cup plain yogurt

2 eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries




Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter or line muffin tins with paper liners.


Place the butter in a small skillet and cook over medium heat until the butter begins to brown and starts to smell nutty.  Remove from the heat and let cool.


In a small bowl, stir together the chopped hazelnuts, cinnamon and turbanido sugar.  Set aside.


Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl, pouring back into the bowl any flour or other ingredients that remain in the sifter.  Set 2 tablespoons of the mixture aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk the wet ingredients until thoroughly combined. 

Pour the browned butter over the dry ingredients, add the buttermilk mixture on top of that. Using a spatula, mix together the wet and dry ingredients.

Sprinkle the reserved 2 tablespoons of the dry mixture over the blackberries and toss to coat.  Add the blackberries to the batter and gently mix to combine.

Scoop the batter into 12 muffin cups, using a spoon or an ice cream scoop. The batter should be mounded above the edges of the cups. Sprinkle the hazelnut topping evenly over the batter, gently pressing it into the batter so that it adheres.

Bake for 22 to 26 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through. The muffins are ready to come out when they smell nutty, the hazelnuts are toasted, and the bottoms are golden in color (twist one out of the pan to check). Remove the pan from the oven, twist each muffin out, and place it on its side in the cup to cool. This keeps the muffins nice and crunchy.

Serve warm from the oven.