Back-to-School became a reality for our family, this morning. If you and your family are not so much “morning people”, like me and my kids, then breakfast can be a challenge on school days. The focus at our house tends to be more on making sure all the books and homework are packed and ready to go, that forms and paperwork have been filled out, signed and are packed and ready to go, that gym clothes and projects are packed and ready to go and that every hair is in place, makeup is perfect and outfits are just so. Breakfast is not a priority for our thirteen-year-old daughter, but I still want to make sure she heads out the door with the energy and fuel to let her think clearly and learn. Having a few easy-to-fix, breakfast-on-the-go items prepped and available, makes it easier for her to make good, nutritional choices as she hurries through her morning routine. English Muffins can put those options right in her hand, even if she is running out the door.
Egg and cheese sandwiches are an obvious choice with English muffins. Add some bacon or sausage to suit heartier appetites. Often our kids enjoy English muffins with just peanut butter and jam. Warm from the toaster with butter and grape jelly is my favorite. English muffins can be used for relaxed weekend breakfasts and brunches, too. Try Eggs Benedict or a scrumptious English muffin pizza! However you like to eat them, you can save lots of money in the grocery budget and feel good about the ingredients going into them, by simply making English Muffins at home.
The original of the recipe I used, came from Food.com. I changed it up, just a little, mostly doubling the recipe, and not using a bread machine. I did use olive oil instead of butter. I feel like there is a learning curve to actually cooking these. I cook mine on my electric griddle set to 300 degress. I cook one side for 7 minutes and then the other side for 7 minutes. The nice part about using the griddle is I can cook anywhere from 8-12 muffins at one time. The tricky part is convincing myself that the muffins are done. Both sides can be beautifully browned and the edges will still seem a little doughy to me. Resist the urge to cook them longer. As you move them to the rack to cool, the dough will finish cooking.
Also, the texture of these is not what I would consider a “true” English muffin, with it’s deep craters and holes and slightly chewy texture. This bread is softer and while it can achieve a delectably craggy, crunchy texture after being toasted, it still lacks the deep definition of pores that I think of in English muffins. So, my search for an authentic English muffin recipe continues, but in the meantime, this one is a scrumptious home run! I hope you enjoy it!
- 2 c. warm milk or buttermilk
- ⅓ c. olive oil
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 Tbls. sugar
- 6-7 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbls. yeast
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, add sugar and yeast to warm milk and stir gently.
- Mix in eggs, olive oil and salt.
- Add 6 cups of the flour and continue mixing on low speed until all the flour has been incorporated and a ball of dough is beginning to take shape. Slowly add flour (1 or 2 Tablespoons at a time), mixing after each addition, until the dough pulls cleanly away form the sides of the bowl as your mixer runs.
- Knead the dough for 6 minutes with your mixer, (or 10 minutes by hand).
- Put dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with a warm damp tea towel. Let rise until doubled in size.
- Divide dough into 18 - 24 equal pieces, depending on the size you like your muffins. Press each piece into a flat disc ½ inch thick.
- Let the muffins rise for 15 minutes.
- Set your electric griddle to 300 degrees or heat a cast iron skillet on the stove top until it is approximately that same temperature.
- Place the muffins on the hot griddle, leaving at least one inch of space between them.
- Allow English muffins to cook for 7 minutes on the first side.
- Flip the English muffins and cook the second side for 7 minutes. Both sides will be golden brown while the edges stay soft and white.
- Gently pierce the side of each muffin with a fork, lift gently and split the muffin in half.
- That's it! Super simple.
- Store them in an airtight container or bag for use through the week or lay them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and flash freeze. Transfer frozen muffins to a ziptop freezer bag and store inthe freezer until you are ready to use them.
- Remove only the muffins you want to use and toast them in the toaster to use for sandwiches, snacking, or lunch recipes.