Blueberry Spelt Muffins

Blueberry Spelt Muffins

Blueberry Spelt Muffins excerpted from Pulp: A Practical Guide to Cooking with Fruit by Abra Berens. Photography by EE Berger.

Pulp: A Practical Guide to Cooking with Fruit Hardcover by Abra Berens

Pulp is a hardworking book of recipes that focuses on all the ways fruit can enhance simple, delicious mains—for example, by elevating roasted vegetables, garnishing soup, or adding perfume to a roasted pork or brisket. Unlike Ruffage and Grist, Pulp is about regularly incorporating fruit to add variety and seasonality to main dishes.

Home cooks and bakers alike will rejoice in the alternately sweet and savoury recipes such as Roast Chicken over Blueberries, Cornbread + Lemon; Melon, Cucumber + Chickpea Salad; and Rum-Plum Clafoutis. The book also features helpful reference material, a Baker’s Toolkit, and more than 100 atmospheric photos, delivered with the can-do attitude and accessibility of the Midwestern United States. This next generous offering from beloved, trusted author Abra Berens is a necessary addition to any kitchen shelf alongside its predecessors and other mainstays like Plenty, Six Seasons, and Small Victories.

THIS IS THE A TO Z OF FRUIT: The content is deep and authoritative, but also wide-ranging, with information and recipes for 15 different, widely accessible fruit varieties: Apples, Apricots, Blueberries, Cherries, Drupelet Berries (blackberries, raspberries, mulberries), Grapes, Ground Cherries (a.k.a. cape gooseberries), Melons, Nectarines + Peaches, Pears, Plums, Quince, Rhubarb, Strawberries, and Tart Round Fruits (cranberries, currants, gooseberries, lingonberries + autumn olive). Pulp features only fruits that grow in the Midwestern United States, so no bananas, passion fruit, or citrus here.

CULINARY REFERENCE BOOK: Like Ruffage and Grist before it, Pulp is a truly useful reference cookbook. Organized by type of fruit, each chapter offers authoritative info and tips that the home cook can use to deepen their knowledge of ingredients and broaden their repertoire of techniques—all in the service of improving their meals. The recipes are simple, generally quick to prepare, and use ingredients that are easy to find and often already in your pantry. Plus, the many variations empower home cooks to flex their creativity and trust themselves in the kitchen.

DISTINCTIVE: In a super-chunky package (432 pages!) brimming with photos and accessible, delicious recipes, Pulp is not just a reference cookbook but a beautiful one at that. The three cookbooks are perfect for gifting together as a set to a lucky friend.

Perfect for:

  • Recreational cooks of all skill levels, from beginners looking to master a few dependable techniques to seasoned cooks who want recipes and strategies for easy weeknight meals with more healthy ingredients
  • Plus for bakers: One-third of Pulp‘s content is baking recipes!
  • Anyone looking for creative fruit recipes or new inspiration for whole-food cooking
  • Fans of Abra Berens and her previous cookbooks
  • Gift selection for cookbook collectors and fans of Alice Waters, Yotam Ottolenghi, Molly Yeh, and Joshua McFadden who are looking for the next great healthy eating cookbook
  • The next must-have reference cookbook for lovers of Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat

Pulp: A Practical Guide to Cooking with Fruit by Abra Berens is available at, and   

Blueberry Spelt Muffins

Spelt flour is becoming more widely available, so I’ve started swapping it for all-purpose flour in a lot of recipes. Spelt has a lower gluten content than wheat, making it easier for some to digest and harder to overwork if you’re a naturally heavy-handed stirrer like me. I use either fresh or frozen blueberries for these muffins but have taken to adding the blueberries directly to the muffins as opposed to the batter before scooping. It helps minimize batter bruising.


1 recipe Muffin Batter

1 cup [140 g] blueberries made with spelt flour (see below)

1 cup [140 g] blueberries

Sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 375°F [190°C]. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin or line with baking papers.

Scoop the batter into the cups until about three-quarters of the way full. Add a handful of blueberries to each cup.

Sprinkle with sugar and bake until golden brown and set in the center, 12 to 17 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through.

Note: You can also bake this as a loaf or round cake; just swap the pan and then test using the knife test (see page 30) for doneness.

Muffin Batter

I’m pretty sure that this recipe is based off of the blueberry muffin batter from Joy of Cooking, though it seems to have gone through a few twists and turns over the years. I like to substitute whole-grain flavours for the all-purpose flour, especially spelt or barley, which are naturally lower in gluten and so make a tender muffin that still has structure. If you don’t have milk, I have substituted buttermilk or thinned-out yogurt with good results. Finally, I add the fruit to each individual muffin instead of adding to the batter to prevent batter bruising.


2 cups [280 g] all-purpose or lower gluten flour

1⁄3 cup [65 g] sugar

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 cup [240 ml] milk or buttermilk

2 eggs

3 Tbsp butter, melted

2 Tbsp [30 g] fruit per muffin unless specified in the specific recipe

Preheat the oven to 375°F [190°C]. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin or line with baking papers.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.

In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, and melted butter.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir until just combined. Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tin. Add the fruit to each muffin cup. Bake until the knife comes out clean, 15 to 20 minutes.

Cool completely before serving. Muffins keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Recipe reprinted with permission from Chronicle Books.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.