3/14/14

English Muffins

 I've eaten quite a few english muffins in my time - particularly with eggs and cheese!- but it never occurred to me to make these bad boys. They were probably one of the most unorthodox things I've ever baked. But they turned out be rewarding, cause homemade taste a lot better than store bought. Crisp, crumbly and utterly soft in the center, definitely great to make for weekend breakfast.
The dough is extremely soft, but don't worry about that, just keeping kneading and working the dough until it comes together and is soft and pliable.

Total time: 3 hours
Bake time: 5-10 minutes

Makes 8 muffins.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cups bread or all-purpose flour
6 grams fact-acting yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
2 sticks of unsalted butter, softened
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup milk (can add up to 1-2 tablespoons)
oil, for greasing
1 tables corn meal, or polenta for the pan

Also:
Mixing bowl
Rolling pin
3-4 inch wide round cutter


Preparation
1. Mix together the flour, yeast, salt, sugar, butter, and egg in a large mixing bowl.

2. Add the milk and mix to form a soft dough.

3. Tip onto a well-floured surface and knead until soft and pliable, about ten minutes (your arms will get a work out, or you know cheat and use a mixer.)

4. Grease a clean bowl and place the dough inside; cover with a cloth or plastic wrap and let to proof for 1 hour, till doubled in bulk.

5. Tip the dough onto a floured surface and gently roll out to 1/2 inch thick. Make sure you roll them pretty then! Mine exploded after the second proof!

6. Cut out the muffins with a round cookie or biscuit cutter, dust with polenta or corn meal and set aside on a baking sheet, about an inch apart.

7. Let them proof for 30 minutes.

8. Take a large pan or skillet and place on medium high heat; you want the pan nice and hot. Place the muffins on the pan about 4 at a time, about 5 minutes each side, flip once or until they sound hollow when tapped.

9. Set them aside and let them rest 30 more minutes. I know, this sucks. You just want them right now when they're warm and delicious! But you have to let them cool a minute so they can fully cook in the center.


10. Spread with butter, jam, or whatever your heart desires. These freeze well too!
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