English Muffins

Posted 11 November 2010 by

Mmmm… English muffins. How hard could they be to make? Actually, not hard at all. I was inspired by the beautiful photos on this post over at Pinch My Salt. Looking at the recipe though, I was slightly put off because I didn’t have any buttermilk, so I had a look around for alternative recipes and found this one by Delia — no buttermilk! I’ll have to try the other recipe another time.

Toasted English muffins with butter

English muffins, toasted and buttered

Ingredients:

  • 223 ml milk
  • 55 ml water
  • 1 level tsp caster sugar
  • 2 level tsp dried yeast
  • 450 g strong, white flour
  • 1 rounded tsp salt
  • little bit of lard for the griddle

Heat the milk and water until it is hot, but not too hot to burn your hand. Add it to the yeast and sugar and leave it to develop a “good frothy head”. Measure out the flour & salt, make a well and pour the yeast mixture into it.

Mix it up into a dough and knead it for about 10 minutes.

Delia suggested leaving it to rise for 45 minutes, but mine took a couple of hours because it was such a cold day.

To shape the muffins, I went back to Pinch My Salt’s recipe, and pulled off bits of the dough and shaped them by hand. The last few I did Delia’s way — rolled them out and cut them with a round cookie cutter. Next time, I’ll do them all this way as they were definitely the better looking ones. I left them to rise again, dusted them with cornflour, and then it was time to cook!

Surprisingly, if you’ve never done this before, English muffins aren’t baked in the oven, but cooked on a griddle (or a heavy frying pan). Heat the griddle over a medium heat, with a little bit of lard. Add them to the griddle four at a time – they take about seven minutes each side.

English muffins cooking on a griddle

They didn’t “puff up” as much as I expected from reading the other recipes, (maybe a yeast problem?) but they did end up with one side slightly wider than the other.

Verdict? Very easy, and verrry tasty, both fresh and toasted. Most of them were too small, and some were definitely a bit peculiar-looking, so next time I’ll work on the appearance a bit more (and get a better photographer)! To get a lovely “nook and cranny” interior, you shouldn’t cut your English muffins, but pull them apart gently with a fork.

With elderberry and bramble jelly

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