High on my list of “What I learned in 2013” is that avocado makes for a fabulous fat substitute in baked goods (as well as the secret to lending an absolutely silken texture to smoothies). And as a side note, I also learned that avocados are also known as “alligator pears.”
Until recently, I had limited my avocado experiments to some of less delicate sweets — the kinds of recipes where a chunk of avocado wouldn’t feel out of place amidst, say, bits of zucchini, shredded beets, walnuts, flax, or carrots.
Last week, introduced avocado into something a little finer. I substituted mashed avocado for half of the oil in a Blueberry Lemon Muffin recipe. The stakes were, of course, high. No one ever bit into a perfectly fine Blueberry Lemon Muffin and wished that something green had been added. And I’m here to say that they should. As is the case with smoothies, an avocado just adds a lightness and a silkiness. So the question is, if a superfood substitution makes a muffin that much better, why not?
- 1 3/4 cups flour
- 1/3 cup plus 2 Tbsp. raw sugar
- 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup mashed avocado (about 1/2 avocado)
- 2 Tbsp. canola oil
- 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
- 1 Tbsp grated lemon zest
- 2 Tbsp. melted butter
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Mash avocado and set aside.
- Sift flour, baking powder and salt. Make an indentation in the center. Beat avocado, sugar, oil milk. Pour into the indentation in the dry ingredients, and stir until just combined.
- If blueberries are frozen or slightly frozen, coat with 1-2 Tbsp. of flour to help encase the fruit and prevent the berries from dying the muffins blue. Very gently, add in the blueberries and the lemon zest. Stir until just combined.
- Fill muffin tins 2/3 full and cook at 400 for about 25 minutes or until muffin springs back when touched.
- For a special extra step, melt butter. When muffins are still warm, dip the tops in butter and then in raw sugar.