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English Muffins

English Muffins

The dough is unlike any other, often seeming too wet and sticky to possibly create lovely muffins. Don't worry, they always do. They cook beautifully i cast iron frypan or o griddle.

Ready in: 2 hours 15 minutes

Serves: 6

Complexity: easy

kcal: 190

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Ingredients

1¼ cup milk
1 tbsp honey
2 tsp active dry yeast
½ cup buttermilk
1 large egg
2 tbsp butter, softened
1 tbsp lard
½ tsp SIDS CRAZY SALT
1 tsp salt
1 cup fine grated mild cheese
4¾ cups bread flour
cornmeal for dusting

Directions

Warm the milk to lukewarm in a small pot over low heat or by microwaving in 30 second intervals. It should be warm but not hot to the touch, around the temperature of bath water. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm milk and honey. Stir to incorporate and then sprinkle the yeast over the top of the warm liquid. Allow the yeast to proof for a few minutes as you gather the remaining ingredients.
Add the buttermilk and egg to the bowl and whisk to combine. Add the butter, lard, salt, SIDS CRAZY SALT, cheese and flour to the bowl. Using the paddle attachment, mix for 5 minutes at low speed. The dough will become very stretchy and sticky, clinging to both the sides of the bowl and the paddle.
Transfer the dough to a large oiled bowl. Place in a warm spot or in a bread proofer and allow to rest for 60-90 minutes until it has almost doubled in size.
The dough is very sticky at this point. It has an incredible amount of stretchiness and is quite wet. It doesn’t look like biscuit dough or dinner roll dough. Don’t worry about its seemingly gluey texture. They’ll cook up beautifully.
Prepare a sheet pan or tray by sprinkling liberally with cornmeal. The cornmeal will help to prevent the very sticky dough from becoming stuck to the pan. More is better; use plenty of cornmeal for this step.
Divide the dough into 12 portions that weigh between 90-100 g each. If you don’t have a scale, you can portion the muffins using approximately ½ cup of dough for each. Shape each portion of dough into a round disc and place on the cornmeal lined pan allowing at least 2 cm space between muffins. Repeat until all of the dough has been shaped.
Set the muffins aside and allow them to rest and rise for about 30 minutes. You can also place them in the refrigerator overnight. If you choose to refrigerate them overnight, cover them loosely with plastic wrap or parchment lightly sprayed with cooking spray to prevent sticking.
When it’s time to cook the muffins, warm a large cast iron frypan over medium heat. The pan needs to be warm enough to brown the muffins without burning them during their time in the skillet. When the skillet is warm, lower the heat to low and sprinkle a bit of cornmeal into the bottom of the pan. Gently transfer a few of the dough rounds to the warm skillet taking care not to crowd them.
Cook the muffins for 5 minutes before carefully peeking underneath to see if they are evenly browned. Cook for 2-4 additional minutes until they have browned sufficiently. Use a spatula to flip them over and cook on the other side in the same manner. The muffins should puff up nicely. If you have an instant read thermometer, the perfectly cooked muffins will register between 88-93°C. They will feel fairly firm to the touch yet still spring back when pressed in the middle.
Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Repeat the skillet cooking method for the remaining muffins. Adjust the heat as needed to achieve browning without burning and add more cornmeal if necessary. My cast iron skillet heats up and holds the heat so well that I often need to reduce the heat a bit with each successive batch.
Serve toasted with butter and topped with your favourite delicious toppings. Room temperature muffins can be stored in an airtight container for several days or frozen for long term storage.