English Muffins


We know now why we love innkeeping.   This was the first time that our B & B has been closed for such a long time – 3 months.   Financially, it made sense since we have a long driveway and would not have to be spending most of our profit for plowing.   (With Subaru’s, we can easily take our snowy hill without plowing.   And the irony is that we had very little snow this year.)   Yet, we both needed some down time to regenerate. We missed enjoying and talking with our guests.

A few weeks ago, we had our first guests of the year, and after they left we both said “wasn’t that fun?” .  It was a wonderful confirmation of why we are innkeepers.   Breakfast is so enjoyable.   I get to do what I like to do best – cooking, baking, talking and laughing with our guests.

Over the winter months, we got caught up on our sleep, visited our grandchildren, caught up on the ongoing maintenance and tried new breakfast recipes.   I spent quite a bit of time finding the best English Muffins, and I do think that I was successful.   I wanted to have good English Muffins to go with Eggs Benedict.   They are also so very good toasted by themselves. They are easy to make and after you taste them, you will never buy another English Muffin.   The recipe follows…

- Mary


English Muffin Recipe

                        (from Peter Reinhardt’s book  The Bread Baker’s Apprentice)

Sift together:
    2 ¼ cups flour
    ½ Tbsp. sugar
    ¼ tsp salt
    1 ¼ tsp instant yeast

Mix in:
    1 Tbsp room temp butter or margarine
    ¾ – 1 cup room temp milk (start with ¾ milk and add the extra milk if the dough is dry)

Knead the dough for about 10 minutes either by hand or in a mixer.   Place in a lightly oiled bowl, rolling the dough to grease all the dough, cover with a plastic wrap, and let rise for about 1 hour.

Divide the dough into 6-8 equal pieces and shape into balls.   Place dough balls on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper or Silpat, or coated with oil and sprinkled with cornmeal.

Leave enough space between the dough balls so that they can rise, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 350 deg and heat a skillet at medium heat on the stovetop.

Brush the skillet with oil and gently cook the dough on the skillet for 5-8 min until the bottoms are nicely browned.   Flip over and cook the other side for about 5-8 minutes more.   They will flatten as they cook.

When the muffins look like they are done, immediately transfer them to the baking sheet and bake at 350 deg for 5-8 min.   Move the first batch to the oven while cooking the second batch on the skillet.
Cool on a cooling rack for at least 30 min before slicing.   Store in the refrigerator or freeze.


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