Do you love English Muffins? We LOVE them in our house and eat them several times per week for breakfast. I even like putting burgers on them, and as kids, we used to make “pizza muffins” with a little red sauce and shredded Mozzarella. In fact, we love English Muffins so much, that whenever there was a buy one get one free sale at our grocery store, we would stock up and put them in the freezer.
But have you ever looked at the label on Thomas’ English Muffins? The list of ingredients goes on and on and reads like a science book:
UNBLEACHED ENRICHED WHEAT FLOUR [FLOUR, MALTED BARLEY FLOUR, REDUCED IRON, NIACIN, THIAMIN MONONITRATE (VITAMIN B1), RIBOFLAVIN (VITAMIN B2), FOLIC ACID], WATER, FARINA, YEAST, SUGAR, SALT, SOYBEAN OIL, PRESERVATIVES (CALCIUM PROPIONATE, SORBIC ACID), GRAIN VINEGAR, MONOGLYCERIDES, NONFAT MILK, SOY FLOUR, WHEY.
It never occurred to me that you could make an English Muffin at home. Or perhaps it occurred to me, but I couldn’t imagine how one would go about making them – the nooks and crannies, the browned outsides? So I headed to the internet and I found a recipe for Homemade Whole Wheat Bagels and English Muffins. The muffins are a multi-step process, and I don’t know why I settled on this recipe, as the directions seem much more appropriate for an experienced baker, but it was so much fun to do!
About the Recipe
I am new to baking with yeast, so I didn’t have my water quite warm enough for that yeast. My online research tells me 100-110 degrees is prime yeast temperature for the water. I think warmer water and warmer proofing might result in more of those coveted nooks and crannies.
Also, my husband is lactose intolerant, so you’ll find I make lots of substitutions when it comes to cow’s milk dairy. He tells me lactose is only found in cow’s milk, so we often use goat and sheep milk products as well as almond milk. I decided to use almond milk for this recipe and therefore didn’t have to scald it. (I realize Almond Milk is processed, but it’s one of the least evil of the milk alternatives, and I use Silk brand, as it doesn’t contain carrageenan.)
Finally, the recipe says to roll them to 1/4 inch thickness, but I think closer to 1/2 inch is much more ideal and will produce an English Muffin like you’re used to buying in the store. Enjoy!
Whole Wheat English Muffins
(shared from Mother Earth News)
To prepare about 24 muffins, add 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter, 2 1/2 teaspoons of salt, and 1/4 cup of honey to 2 cups of scalded milk. Cool the liquid to lukewarm, and stir in 2 packages of yeast dissolved in 1/2 cup of tepid water, 2 beaten eggs, and four cups of sifted whole wheat flour. When all the ingredients are blended well, knead in another 3 to 4 cups of flour and then let the dough rise until it’s doubled in bulk.
When it’s “up to size,” cut the sweet-smelling lump into two sections, roll each piece out until it’s about a quarter inch thick, and use your converted tuna can to cut the individual muffins. (Knead the trimmings until they hold together, roll them out, cut more disks, and repeat the process until all the dough is used up.)
Next, cover the dough “patties” and let them rise for about half an hour. When the time is up, sprinkle cornmeal on an ungreased griddle (I own an older model of this griddle), cook the muffins until their undersides are unevenly dark brown, then turn them over and “toast” the tops.
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When I prepared this recipe, it made 40 English muffins that were 115 calories each, with 3 g of fat, 3 g of protein, and 2 g of fiber. However, as I mentioned above, I think I would have rolled them a fair bit thicker next time around. I will be sure to post updated nutritional content with my second batch (which won’t be for a while – I still have some of these muffins in my freezer!).
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