I have been on a mission since forever (sometime around 1991) when the Simpsons department store closed up shop. They sold the most delicious wheat germ muffins and I’ve been looking for a replacement for those muffins ever since.
Whenever I’m looking at cookbooks or cooking magazines in a bookstore, I check the indexes to see if there’s a listing for wheat germ muffins in case I find something I can make. It would be worth the cost of a new book if I found an entry. So far, no luck.
With mounds of information available online, I hoped that searching there would lead me to my goal. Any time I think of those muffins I get typing, hoping that a new entry will show up that looks like it will be a good substitute.
While searching one day, I stumbled across an entry for muffins with wheat germ in them from The Laura Secord Canadian Cook Book. They were not called wheat germ muffins though, but “The Queen’s Muffins” and they had raisins in them. There were no raisins in the muffins from Simpsons.
I figured I’d be able to recognize if they were the same, even with the raisins. I’d eaten enough of those muffins that I was sure I’d remember their flavour if I ever found one again. I ordered the book and hoped.
Were these the muffins I’d been looking for? Is my quest over? Let’s cook these and find out.
Get the flour, baking powder and salt together.
Measure 5/8 of a cup of butter.
Cream the butter.
Add the sugar to the butter.
Beat the sugar with the butter until it’s light and fluffy.
Incorporate the eggs.
Eggs, butter and sugar.
Deviating from the recipe: add the wheat germ to the dry ingredients.
Measure the raisins. More recipe deviation… not gonna cut the raisins in half because: no.
Add the whole (gasp) raisins into the dry ingredients.
After adding the butter/sugar/egg mixture, get the milk into the dry ingredients too.
Mix until JUST combined, then fill the muffin tins.
After 20 minutes.
The Queen’s Muffins.
So. These are not the same as the wheat germ muffins from Simpsons (even without the raisins), but they are good muffins. The search continues.
From The Laura Secord Canadian Cook Book by Canadian Home Economics Association, a delightful collection of recipes produced to celebrate Canada’s centennial.
The Queen’s Muffins
During the October 1957 visit of Queen Elizabeth to Canada, chefs across the land prepared these muffins for Her Majesty’s afternoon tea. We understand that Royal Canadian Air Force dietitians standardized the large-quantity recipe from which this version was derived. On many occasions the Press Corps assigned to the tour ate the muffins so fast that it was necessary to have a few in reserve for the Queen.
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Grease thoroughly 16 medium-sized muffin cups.
Sift or blend together
1-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
5/8 cup butter (1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp.)
Gradually blend in
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Beat until light and fluffy.
Add dry ingredients alternately with
1-1/4 cups milk
Make 3 dry and 2 liquid additions, combining lightly after each.
3/4 cup wheat germ
1 cup raisins, cut in half
Fill prepared muffin cups 2/3 full.
Bake in 375°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from pans and serve warm or cold.
Makes 16 muffins.