Saturday, July 3, 2010

Putting the English on a Muffin

Pin It Ray wanted something "Benedicted" for breakfast   Eggs, hollandaise and English muffin, not necessarily with Canadian bacon.

He wanted it without much fanfare.


I wanted it because I wanted to make the muffins.

We both got what we wanted, just a little late.  So we had Benedict for brunch.  And we're happier for it.

English Muffins

(makes 8 large muffins)

(metal rings)

Muffins are cooked on a griddle, not baked. In order to achieve the perfectly round shape, you’re going to need a round metal ring. I use tart rings (see picture above) but you can use round cookie cutters or a tuna can with the tops and bottoms removed.  Otherwise, you can simply go for a more freeform muffin and scoop the batter directly onto the griddle without a ring hemming it in.  Since the batter won't spread willy nilly, you'll be safe, just not perfectly round.



I like to add a touch of sourdough starter.  It adds tang and a chew that I find utterly delightful.  You don't have to, especially if you don't keep a starter.  And if you don't keep a starter and you decide upon reading this that you want to make this recipe but only with sourdough, you'll have to wait a few weeks to get started.

INGREDIENTS

3 cups flour
1 cup water
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) melted butter
½ cup milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup sourdough starter (optional)

1 tablespoon yeast
1/3 cup warm (not hot) water
pinch sugar


PROCEDURE

•In a large bowl, combine 1 cup water, ½ cup milk, melted butter, sugar and salt.

•In a small bowl, stir together yeast, pinch sugar and warm water. Allow to dissolve and bloom, about five minutes.

•Stir the bloomed yeast into the large bowl with the water and milk. Add sourdough starter, if using.

•With a large wooden spoon, stir constantly as you slowly add the 3 cups flour. Stir vigorously until the mixture is smooth. The dough shouldn’t be runny but will be rather loose and sticky.

•Cover and allow to rest for thirty minutes.

•Preheat a smooth griddle (or if you don’t have one, a large skillet) over medium heat. Spray liberally with non-stick cooking spray and place tart rings (or tuna cans) on the griddle and spray the insides of the rings liberally as well.

•Using a large cookie scoop, scoop on large glob of batter into the ring (the batter should fill the ring no more than half way up). I use my fingers to push the batter to the very edge since it won’t spread as easily as, say, a pancake batter. However, the batter will expand as it’s grilling, so don’t be overly concerned with filling up the entire ring.

•You can cover the grilling muffins with a lid (I use two pot lids to make sure they are all covered) but the batter does rise and will stick to the underside of the pot cover. If you have a deep and narrow hotel pan, this works beautifully but you can feel free to go topless. Grill for ten minutes over medium heat.

•Flip the muffins and grill for about 10 minutes more. Use tongs or a spatula for the flipping. (I find that the griddle oil starts to blacken at this point and if I’m feeling like a perfectionist, I’ll remove the muffins from the griddle to a cooling rack and wipe the griddle down and respray to keep the side that gets cooked last from getting blackened).

Find the recipe for the Freegrace Benedict here.