Saturday, March 10, 2007

Muffin wo-Man

Nothing is better to me than a nicely toasted English muffin spread with butter. Yum! Even though it's quite easy to run out to the store and pick up a package of one of the many varieties, I thought I'd try it at home. After all, I know what is going into my muffins and homemade seems to taste just a little better.

I tried Alton Brown's recipe and found that it was lacking. It tasted to me more like a very dense pancake, and in fact I really didn't like the flavor or the texture at all. So I found this recipe.

English Muffins

1 2/3 cup milk
2 1/2 T butter
1 package active dry yeast
1 heaping T sugar
1/3 cup warm water (110-115 degrees Fahrenheit)
1 large egg
2 t salt
1 T vinegar
5 cups unbleached flour (sifted)

Heat the milk and melt the butter in it. Set aside to cool

Combine the yeast, water, and sugar. Allow to proof for a few minutes

Combine the cooled milk mixture with the yeast mixture in large bowl. Add the egg, salt, and vinegar, along with half of the flour and mix at medium speed for about 5 minutes. Add in remaining flour and mix well. It's better to spray your beaters with cooking spray to keep the dough from climbing up them. The mixture will be very sticky. Cover and allow to rise in a draft-free area for 1 hour.

Heat a griddle or skillet (I used an electric one and preheated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit)

Pour cornmeal into a bowl. Take approximately 1/2 cup of the dough (less works a bit better) using two tablespoons to portion out and form into a ball. The mixture is quite elastic and this isn't too hard to do. Drop dough into corn meal and sprinkle then flatten. I then dropped these into my nonstick egg mold rings on the electric nonstick skillet and lightly pressed the dough into the mold. They are about 3 inched in diameter.

I put the lid on the skillet and cooked on each side for 7 minutes.

These are tasty toasted, but not exactly like traditional English muffins. In fact, they are something different all together I would say. Enjoy!

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