We have lived in our house for over 13 years, and we are still finding nice little surprises all around. Last year, we discovered we had a huckleberry bush. It produced a few small berries, but not that many. Not really enough to do anything with. This year, we had quite a few. Larry picked a whole bunch of our wild huckleberries the other day and today, I turned these mini berries into some mini muffins.
Huckleberries are small berries that resemble tiny blueberries, but they are not as sweet as blueberries are. They are more bitter. These tiny little berries are abundant all over North America and are a variation of the English hurtleberry or whortleberry. The berries are often red, blue or black. The name ‘huckleberry” applies to a wide variety of plants that bare these tiny fruit that are part of the Gaylussacia species.
Huckleberries were traditionally collected by Native American tribes and were used in a wide variety of Native foods as well as in traditional medicines to treat pain, heart ailments, and infections. Today, huckleberries are used for many types of foods including candy, pie, ice cream, muffins, pancakes, salads and dressings, tea, jams, syrup, and so much more. Not only are huckleberries eaten and enjoyed by humans, but they are also loved by the local wildlife such as bears, birds, deer and coyotes as well. And just think, we have them growing wild in our backyard.
Lemon-Huckleberry Mini Muffins
Preheat the oven to 400* F or 200* C
Spray the muffin tins with cooking spray
2 1/2 cups flour
1 TBSP baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp lemon rind
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup milk
1 stick or 1/2 cup of butter, melted
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon juice
1 cup huckleberries or blueberries
Mix all the dry ingredients, including the berries, together and set aside.
Whisk the egg, milk, butter, sugar, vanilla and lemon juice together.
Then gently fold in the egg mixture into the flour mixture. You do not want to crush the huckleberries. They are fairly delicate.
When everything is thoroughly mixed together, spoon the mixture into the muffin pans. You can use either mini muffin pans, like I did, or regular muffin pans. For the mini muffins, I spooned about a heaping tsp of batter into each cup.
Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until the muffins are lightly golden.
This little mini muffins are going to be light and airy, like their cousins, the scone. They just pop right into your mouth like popcorn. Do you think you can stop at just one? Go ahead. I dare you. 🙂
Stay safe and stay well Everyone. ‘Til next time.