Out of all the things that I ate in my high school cafeteria, only one item ever stuck in my mind. And it really stuck in my mind. Every morning, I would arrive early to school just so I could eat breakfast there (well, yes, and to get good parking). Anyway. I would buy a chocolate chip muffin and a box of milk. It was fabulous. I tried for years to get a recipe that tasted the way I remembered them, but everything I tried just wasn't right. Then I came across a recipe online that was pretty darn close. It was too sweet and way too greasy, but after making those adjustments, they are perfect! These little bad boys are my most common breakfast. The nice thing is that the recipe makes 2 dozen and they freeze really well. So, I make them once a month or so and freeze them in zipper top bags. I tend to eat two for breakfast and they zap up in the microwave in about 40 seconds. I highly recommend them. You can also make these muffins with blueberries and they are also very good.
Chocolate Chip (or Blueberry) Muffins
4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
7 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter softened
2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate chips OR 2 cups blueberries dusted in flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine dry ingredients. Cut in butter and mix until resembles coarse crumbs. Separately, beat eggs, vanilla, and milk until frothy. Add wet to dry, mixing only until blended. Fold in chips or berries. Spoon into lined cupcake tins. The batter should fill the tins about 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until nicely browned. Makes 24 nice, puffy muffins.
One of the keys to this recipe is to be sure that you don't over mix the batter. Over mixing can lead to tough muffins because the gluten in the flour is activated. Gluten makes things stretchy. Stretchy is good in bread, bad in muffins. If I'm making blueberry muffins, I like to dust the tops with sanding sugar (a pretty, coarse sugar used for decorating). It makes them so much prettier, and I like the added crunch on the top.