I recently tried a new chocolate bar from Dove, the Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate with Blueberries and Almonds bar. The blueberries in the chocolate bar were dried, so they weren’t entirely dissimilar from chocolate with dried cranberries or cherries, but unlike those other fruits, I didn’t really expect to find blueberries in a chocolate bar! Needless to say, the flavor combination worked well and the sweet, slightly chewy blueberries and the crunchy almonds made a great contrast with the milk chocolate. I liked the bar, but I couldn’t help thinking that the combination would be even better in something else. Something like a muffin or a cake.
So, I whipped up a batch of blueberry muffins, incorporating the chopped up chocolate bar along with more dried blueberries and some chopped almonds. I also put some some sliced almonds on top to further highlight their crunch. The combination worked just as well as in the original bar, although, of course, the muffin is a bit less chocolatey than the bar of chocolate itself.
I used some vanilla and almond extracts to flavor the muffin batter, giving it a good flavor but allowing the berries and chocolate to really come through. Even though I used a Dover bar that already had the fruit and nut combination in it, there is no need to run to the store to make this recipe. Just use any bar of your favorite milk chocolate and chop it up. The flavor from the dried blueberries and the toasted almonds on top come through just fine on their own.
Blueberry Milk Chocolate Muffins
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup dried blueberries
3/4 cup chopped milk chocolate
1/4 cup sliced almonds, roughly chopped
sugar and additional sliced almonds, for topping
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together oil, egg, milk and extracts until smooth. Gently stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients, mixing almost until no streaks of flour remain. Add the blueberries, chopped milk chocolate, chopped almonds, then stir until ingredients are well-distributed.
Divide mixture evenly into prepared muffin tins; each cup should be quite full. Sprinkle with sliced almonds and sugar.
Bake 16-19 minutes at 350F, until tester comes out clean and the muffin top springs back when lightly pressed.
Turn muffins our onto a wire rack to cool before serving.