Saturday, December 17, 2016

Homemade English Muffins

These little rolls most resemble English Muffins, but they don't have the same airy texture. Inside, they are more like a bun or slice of bread similar to the commercial "sandwich thin" product that gained popularity for being more low-carb/low-calorie than regular bread several years ago. They make a good base for spreads and can even be used in place of a hamburger bun. 

I like them for my son because of their thinness. I serve him open face peanut butter or hummus on them and I feel like he gets more of the healthy spread instead of a ton of bread. Add some cucumber or orange slices and he has a quick and easy lunch!

Homemade English Muffins
Yield: 9-12
Bake: 325 degrees for 15 minutes

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp fast-acting (bread-machine) yeast
1 tbsp sugar
3/4 cup milk
3 tbsp butter
1 egg
1/2 cup cornmeal

Add the flours, salt, baking soda, yeast, and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer*. Heat the milk and butter until warm - stop once the butter melts - this can be done in the microwave or in a saucepan. Beat the egg and add it to the flour. Start the mixer running on low with the dough hook attachment and pour in the milk/butter in a steady stream. Once the mixture is moistened, turn up the mixer to medium and let it run a few minutes until the dough forms a sticky ball. If your dough is clinging to the sides and bottom of the mixing bowl, add an extra 1-2 tbsp of flour. Turn out your dough onto a floured surface and sprinkle a generous amount of cornmeal onto a sheet tray. Kneed the dough by hand a few times and then roll out to 1/2 inch thickness. Cut circles using a biscuit cutter. The dough will make anywhere from 9-12 "muffins" depending on your thickness. Re-roll the dough as needed until you've used it all. Cover the tray and let it sit 30-45 minutes - they will not rise very much at this step. Turn on the oven to 325 and heat a non-stick skillet over medium on the stove top. Brown your "muffins" on both sides in the skillet - around 2 minutes per side - and return to the sheet tray. Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes. The "muffins" will rise more during the browning stage and while in the oven. Brush off any extra cornmeal, slice, and enjoy! Store in an airtight container on the counter top for up to 3 days or in the fridge up to 10 days. Can be frozen.

*If you don't have a stand mixer, you can mix the dough together by hand in a large bowl and then kneed it for approximately five minutes until it comes together.

Ezekiel Bread is my commercial bread product of choice. I can get Ezekiel 4:9 bread frozen from Whole Foods or fresh from Trader Joes. I keep it in the freezer and if I want some for our lunches, I simply take the slices out after breakfast and let them sit on the counter until lunch. I toast it very lightly in a toaster or skillet. I buy it because I like the ingredient list (organic sprouted wheat, barley, millet, lentils, soybeans, spelt, water, yeast, sea salt). The crusts can be a little hard though, so I cut them off for my son. 

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