I remade: Blueberry cream cheese muffin loaf

In honor of my new year’s baking resolutions, which included the goal to re-make things that didn’t quite work out as planned, I re-attempted the blueberry cream cheese loaf from the weekend.

To recap: this loaf was delicious, but had structural integrity problems.  I attempted to solve this using four different strategies:

  1. I reduced the total amount of oil in the recipe from 1/2 cup to 1/4 cup.
  2. I included NO blueberries in the bottom layer of batter.  So each loaf was just one layer of plain batter, one layer of cream cheese, one layer of blueberry batter.
  3. I then split the recipe and half and tried two different things with each half.  In one half, I replaced the frozen blueberries with freeze-dried blueberries.
  4. In the other half, I used frozen again, but during the “toss with flour” step, I used a sieve, and I shook the sieve a whole lot to remove all excess blue flour.

I also made a few minor changes:

  • Started out with the aluminum foil tent to protect the top from over-browning; removed with 30 minutes to go.
  • Baked the frozen blueberry loaf for a full 75 minutes without removing from oven.
  • Very minimal stirring once blueberries were added.
  • Let sit for only 2 minutes after removing from oven then remove to wire rack.

VERDICT:

Ummm…. I think the first recipe worked better without all these modifications, y’all!

The freeze-dried blueberry version had the most structural integrity, but it was the most boring.  It lost too much moisture.  It didn’t taste as nice as the original recipe and I don’t think it’s worth the sacrifice.

2018-01-15_14-14-43_486.jpeg

The other version, with frozen blueberries only in the top half of the batter, tasted great!  However, it lost structural integrity even WORSE, I think because when I inverted the loaf pan to remove the baked loaf, it just went SPLAT right on the weakest part of the structure.  In theory, this might be work-aroundable, by lining the loaf pan carefully with foil, then removing the loaf from the top, rather than by inverting the pan.  Still, it just seems like a lot of trouble for not that much gain.

Splat:2018-01-15_14-41-58_892.jpeg

In conclusion, this is still a SUPER TASTY recipe and one that I’m still pining for (I wish I had brought it with me to work).  I would definitely repeat this to take as a hostess gift or just when I’m feeling like indulging.  Here’s what I would do:

  • Follow the original recipe for the most part, including the full 1/2 cup vegetable oil.
  • Use blueberries in BOTH halves of the batter, just be careful not to over-stir.
  • Use frozen blueberries & remove as much flour as possible before adding.
  • Use aluminum foil tent for the majority of baking, removing 30 minutes before done.
  • Bake 75 minutes.
  • Let sit for a full 10 minutes after removing (or longer would probably be ok).
  • Just accept that this is a messy recipe!
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