The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Sourdough english muffins

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Sourdough english muffins

I used some of my starter that would have been discarded last night during refreshment to make some english muffins.  I found this recipe about 3 years ago on the KAF Baking Circle.  It was submitted by a user going by the name chard.  It makes great english muffins!

engmuff2

 

The texture is similar to Wolfermans, not big "nooks and crannies", but a little meatier.  I know a wetter dough would create larger holes, but I like them this way.  I used semolina on the parchment while they rested, and the flavor it gives to the bottom of the muffin is fantastic.  Other than only using 2 cups of flour for the whole recipe, I followed the amounts and ingredients exactly.

Sourdough English Muffins

Makes about 12

1/2 C starter (mine is a 100% hydration white starter) 

1 C milk

2-3/4 C AP flour

1 TBSP sugar

3/4 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

Semolina or cornmeal, for dusting

Combine starter, 2 C of flour and milk in a large bowl.  Stir to combine, cover with plastic wrap, and leave out for 8 hours or overnight.

After the overnight rest, add remaining flour (I didn't add any), sugar, salt and baking soda and mix well.  Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 4-5 minutes.  Roll out to 3/4" and cut with a biscuit cutter into rounds.  You can reroll the scraps, but you may need to let the dough rest before cutting more muffins from them.  Place muffins on a piece of parchment dusted with semolina and let rest for 45 minutes.

Spray griddle or skillet lightly with spray oil.  Heat to medium and cook muffins for about 6-8 minutes on each side, or until browned on the top and bottom and cooked through.  These have great griddle spring and rise quite a bit during the "baking".

Split with a fork and enjoy with your favorite topping!  I don't even toast them if I want to eat them right off the griddle--they don't have that raw taste that storebought english muffins have.

Enjoy! 

Comments

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

Those are some good-looking muffins in that photograph!  The KA recipe for sourdough English muffins is one of my favorites.  It has been a few months since I last made any, so maybe I should get a batch going in the near future.

PMcCool

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Those look great.

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I will try making your recipe tonite with the excess from General Chaos. Then let it sit out overnight!

Thanks for sharing. You inspire me! :D

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Thanks, everyone!  They're quite yummy.

Katie  

zolablue's picture
zolablue

Katie, those sure as heck look yummy to me!  Wow.  Yum.  Must add to the list of so many things I need to make.  I simply love English muffins and have not actually eaten one in years.  I think homemade is definately in order.  Really pretty muffins.  Thanks for posting your recipe as well.

Pizzette's picture
Pizzette

Gosh those look good! I'll have to try them soon. Thank you for the recipe!

Pizzette

Richard L Walker's picture
Richard L Walker

While feeding the starter I was thinking about what I could do with it (besides discard it)

and I thought of both sourdough English muffins and pancakes / waffles.  Thanks so much for the recipe. 

TuzaHu's picture
TuzaHu

What a great idea to make EM rather than discard the starter.  I'm going to do that from now on.  I know these will freeze well. 

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

and cooked them in my cast iron skillet. Yours turned out much prettier though! But mine still eat good. I made homemade egg mcmuffins and cottage browns with sliced grape tomatoes for brunch. Man was it good. Thanks so much for the piccys and the recipe!!

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Okay now, stop it!  You keep giving me these great ideas for eating!!!  I adore homemade egg Mcmuffins.

Katie in SC 

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

Totally rocked our world today! :D Haven't had an egg mcmuffin in a hundred years and it really hit the spot. The grape tomotoes on the side with sea salt and pepper were a refreshing addition to the hashbrowns and mcmuffins! mcdelicious!

leemid's picture
leemid

Odd that we call English muffins English muffins when they call them crumpets. Nevertheless, here shows my neuroses... Since I still don't have an oven and therefore haven't baked bread for a couple of weeks (gadzooks! it's been nearly three weeks), having decided to make this recipe, without left over starter which I had none of, I had to make some. I'm lousy at guessing how much weight makes how many cups so I ended up with too much left over starter, and I can't throw any away, that's the very reason for this recipe... so I increased the recipe by 50% and made a lot of them too small because I don't have a cutter larger than about 2 1/4" in diameter. The family went nuts and sucked them down like uncouth aboriginies, as the Brits were wont to call them... I et the last couple this morning and expect I have to make more again, even though I am baching it for the rest of the week.

But they were a more little like southern bisquets than crumpets. How do I get that store-boughten crumb, or is that not really the desired crumb? Is is hydration, I did mine fairly wet, or cooking temperature, or moon phases? Was it that they were too thick (3/4" as prescribed) for their diameter? BTW, what spring! I could have made them 1/2" thick and they would have cooked faster... blah blah blah.

Are there any answers out there?

Lee

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I made these again this past weekend. And although Katie's turned out much nicer in color, mine rose like big dogs! :D I rolled them to 1/2" and let them rise for about 45 minutes or maybe a bit more. The dough wasn't quite double but boy did they have "pan spring"! :D

I have a picture of them here www.mulliganstewme.blogspot.com - they are the first post where I talk about them. The crumb is so moist, that's why I like these better than store bought :) . I did toast others that were leftover from my adventures (btw, I only have a waterglass that I use for mine, about 2-1/2") and the crumb dried out nicely.

Great to know the authentic name! Crumpets! :D

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

I guess I ought to find a crumpet recipe and make it so that I can understand the difference.  But crumpets and English muffins are not really the same thing.  Check out the following link, about halfway down the page:

http://www.worldwidewords.org/topicalwords/tw-cru1.htm

Rosalie

kjknits's picture
kjknits

A crumpet looks like an over-risen pancake.  It's made with a batter, rather than a dough, and it has burst bubbles on the top side.  I think you put rings on the griddle then pour the batter into them.  I love the ones from Wolferman's.  They're smooth and satiny in texture, rather than craggy and bready like English muffins.

HTH! 

Katie in SC 

Richard L Walker's picture
Richard L Walker

Crumpets are great for loading with toppings (butter / jam / other good stuff)

kjknits's picture
kjknits

They sure are!  I like butter and honey on them.

 

Katie in SC 

browndog's picture
browndog

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I'm kinda embarrased to say I've never eaten a crumpet nor have I seen one then! How do you eat them? Do you eat them like an English muffin? Are they kinda pancakey (spongey) or is the crumb bready?

TIA!

Does anyone have a crumpet recipe?

(thanks for the link Rosalie!)

browndog's picture
browndog

Crumpets

Yield: 8-10/ Ingredients:

3 cup or so unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp dry yeast (1/2 oz. fresh)
2 1/2 cup milk and water mixed a generous measure
1 tbl salt
1 tsp sugar
2 tbl oil
Second Mixing
1/2 tsp baking soda
2/3 cup warm water or a little more

Method:
Here is the Elizabeth David version of crumpets. If you don't have her book, English Bread and Yeast Cookery, you should try to get it.

Warm the flour in an earthenware bowl in a low oven for 5 minutes. Warm the oil, milk, water and sugar to blood heat. Use a little of this to cream the yeast. (I proofed active dry yeast in 1/2 cup warm water.) Mix the salt with the warm flour, stir in the yeast, pour in the liquid, and stir the batter very well and vigorously, until it is smooth and elastic. Cover the bowl, leave batter to rise at room temp. until the whole surface is a mass of bubbles and the mixture looks as if it were about to break. This will take 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Forestall the natural falling of the batter by beating it down yourself with a wooden spoon. Dissolve the baking soda in the warm water and stir it into the bowl. Cover the bowl and leave the batter to recover, for about 30 minutes. This time, put it in a rather warmer place, unless you need to delay the cooking of the crumpets, in which case use cold water for dissolving the soda and remove the bowl of batter to a cool place.

To cook the crumpets, grease the griddle very lightly, also the crumpet rings. Put 4 rings on the griddle, pour enough batter into each to come almost to the top. Let them cook very gently, 7 to 10 minutes. By this time there should be a mass of tiny holes. If the holes haven't appeared, the batter is too thick. Add more warm water or milk to the batter before cooking the next batch.

Once the crumpets have set, it should be easy to slip off the rings and turn them over. They only need 3 minutes on the other side.

 

 

Bluezebra, here is what Elizabeth David has to say about her crumpets: "Personally, I find crumpets edible only when freshly cooked, warm and soaked in plenty of butter.Toasting makes them tough and alters the whole structure. I think it preferable to reheat them in a covered dish in the oven, with butter. When all is said and done, crumpets are only yeast pancakes confined to rings and so made thick and of a uniform size."

*with apologies to Katie for what is I hope is more like a 'can we stop here just for a minute-' rather than an utter thread-jack.

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I put her book on my wish list (birthday looming ahead! :D )

Are they difficult to make or easy? Scale of 1-10?

I just might try making them this weekend. Have to go see if I can find some cheap rings for the griddle. My griddle is the double burner variety so does the crumpet batter escape readily from the ring or is it thick enough for the ring to contain it?

 

TIA

 <Katie so sorry for the "scenic shoulder stop"> :D

Richard L Walker's picture
Richard L Walker

It used to be you could use empty tuna tins but, alas, the modern tuna tins are constructed differently and are no longer useful as crumpet rings. With the old ones, you would remove the top and bottom, wash them out and ... instant crumpet ring.

browndog's picture
browndog

Maybe a 4 on my scale just because they don't come from a mix...it should be thick enough not to escape (much anyway,) and of course your griddle should be hot enough that they start cooking right off, like fried eggs, you know? And by the by, rather than getting special rings which admittedly are pretty to look at, you can use the old standby tuna fish cans if you eat about 4 or 8 cans of it between now and the weekend...as to Elizabeth David, her book is not artisan in the 'modern' sense but if you like history and Britain and a chatty writer, she's terrific fun.

Oops about the tuna cans--thanks for the wake up call, Richard. Maybe cat food cans..? (that's a joke. General Yucky, that would be.)

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

don't have any at the moment! lol!

Like chatty writers too (you might be able to tell that since I'm a "bit of a long talker" ;)  )

 

 

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I got crumpet rings today and am armed and prepared to make them for brunch tomorrow! We have amaretto/peach/pecan jam, strawberry jam and blueberry jam as well as honey!! I can't wait. Will report all. :D

browndog's picture
browndog

BZ, those jams sound so good I 'm inclined to think all you really need is a spoon. Amaretto/peach/pecan, wow. One little production note as concerns batter thickness, no you don't want it so thin that it escapes the rings, on the other hand it can't be too thick or you won't get the bubbles. So just do it perfectly and they should be fine..:). Oh, and E David says to flip and cook them another 3 minutes but it probably won't take nearly that long. They just want to color a bit and cook enough on the reverse side so they aren't yucky. Good luck! (when I wanted crumpet rings I couldn't find them. I worked for a chef at the time and she finally brought me a set back from Chicago..or New York, or maybe it was Boston..not here, anyway.)

>aside to Lee: I wouldn't fret much about misremembering, Lee- you've gone and sparked an adventure.

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

reporting on the outcome of the crumpets. I don't know if the link came through. I can't see it on my puter...  www.mulliganstewme.blogspot.com  I've linked my write up.) I think they turned out pretty good for a first time. Texture wise they were delicious although they could have had more bubbles on top. They look like an English muffin but there is where it ends. They ARE more like a thick pancake, just as you've said browndog. The flavor though is more like a blini.

 I thought they were gorgeous really. Much better than pancakes and more festive. All in all they were well worth the effort of making a new recipe.

Thanks soooo much for your recipe and encouragement. Hey I forgot to ask you, was I supposed to split them like you do English muffins? Or was I supposed to serve them whole like I did? TIA!

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

reporting on the outcome of the crumpets. I've linked my write up.) I think they turned out pretty good for a first time. Texture wise they were delicious although they could have had more bubbles on top. They look like an English muffin but there is where it ends. They ARE more like a thick pancake, just as you've said browndog. The flavor though is more like a blini.

 I thought they were gorgeous really. Much better than pancakes and more festive. All in all they were well worth the effort of making a new recipe.

Thanks soooo much for your recipe and encouragement. Hey I forgot to ask you, was I supposed to split them like you do English muffins? Or was I supposed to serve them whole like I did? TIA!

browndog's picture
browndog

Bluezee, your instinct not to split the crumpets was correct, at least as per the dictates of tradition. (Something I learned in Elizabeth David was that you're not officially supposed to split and toast English muffins, either, that is, you're supposed to split them but leave them whole and toast only the outer sides before you butter and dress them. Ha.) I stopped by your place to admire the results and say a word or two.

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

I talk about The Fresh Loaf and put links all over my site to the site here? Confused??

kyoto_gal's picture
kyoto_gal

I made these tonight.  They were too salty but other than that quite good!

leemid's picture
leemid

Never in the two years I spent in England in 72-73 did I get any impression that there was a difference. But then I was a bit younger and could easily have missed a detail or two. Sorry, I guess I must go back and correct my misunderstanding...

Lee

Ruth Redburn's picture
Ruth Redburn

     I made my sourdough muffins Friday.  Looking at those lovely English muffins made me hunger for them.  I got this recipe many years ago (who knows where) and it is by Sarabeth.  I imagine she of the marvelous jams, etc.  They come out like those expensive muffins you order by mail.  Most wonderful to me is that they can all be baked at once in the oven. They are even better I think than those cooked on top of the stove.           Ruth Redburn

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Oh, Ruth--would you consider sharing the recipe?  Baking in the oven sounds so much simpler.

Katie in SC 

Ruth Redburn's picture
Ruth Redburn

   KJ, I would most certainly like to share if you want these, but you do need the rings because the batter is soft and sticky. The original recipe does not have a sourdough starter, but I used 1/2 cup starter in place of 1/4 cup flour and 1/4 cup water.  It worked well.  I added the starter with the other liquid ingredients.  My rings are a mixture of tuna cans, large and small, and muffin rings.  This is an old recipe!   I'll give you the original. Start making them one day ahead. Makes 12

                           Sarabeth's English muffins  

1 cup milk                           2 1/2 Tbl. unsalted butter

1 cup water                          1 lge. egg, slightly beaten

2 Tbl. sugar                         1 Tbl. active dry yeast

1/2 tsp. salt                         4 cups a-p flour

cornmeal for sprinkling

Heat milk, water, sugar and salt to boiling.  Stir in butter and let cool to lukewarm.  Beat in egg.

In large bowl, combine the yeast and flour.(Yes it works) Using electric mixer, gradually beat in liquid until smooth with a loose, sticky consistency.  Cover and refrigerate over night.

Butter the inside of 12 muffin rings. Dip each in cornmeal and place on a large baking sheet sprinkled lightly with cornmeal.

Stir down dough with rubber spatula. it will still be sticky and elastic.  With a large, sharp knife, cut the dough into 12 equal pieces. Fill the rings with the dough pieces and sprinkle on more cornmeal.  Cover loosely and let rise in draft-free spot til doubled about 45 minutes. 

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Bake in lower third of oven for about 25 minutes or til lightly browned. Let cool on baking sheet on rack for 15 min.  Remove the rings, transfer muffins to rack and let cool.  Can be frozen for up to a month.  Toast before serving with butter, jam, or ?

It's does take time but they are great.  This was my first try with sourdough starter.  Goood!

    

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Thank you, Ruth!  I can't wait to try some oven-baked english muffins.  I'm sure they're easier to make.  (Although, I am really quite partial to the recipe above, but still, it takes time when I always make a double batch and can only griddle bake six at a time.)

Katie in SC 

bluezebra's picture
bluezebra

Katie, I can't wait to see piccys of your muffins from Ruth's recipe!! :D

bakebakebake's picture
bakebakebake

Hi there!

I'm interested in trying out these English muffins too, but have 1 question.  In the original post kiknits it says, "I know a wetter dough would create larger holes, ..." but they never added in the last 3/4 cup of flour, wouldn't this made a wetter dough?  If the last 3/4 cup of flour had been added the holes would have been even smaller?

Thanks for any clarification...

I plan on trying this soon!! 

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Hi, bakebakebake!  I was referring to the english muffin recipes that are more of a batter than a dough.  While this recipe is a dough that you cut with round cutters, there are other recipes which use griddle rings to keep a more batter-like dough together on the griddle.  Those recipes are supposed to yield much holier english muffins, although I have never tried one of that nature.

Best wishes for wonderful english muffins!  And please share your results.  (I haven't had time to make any lately, but now you have me craving them.)  =0)

 

Katie  

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

Katie!  I wondered what happened to you.  Long time no hear from.  I know we all just get busy with life sometimes....

Rosalie

kjknits's picture
kjknits

Hi Rosalie!  Yes, lots going on here. I have been working on a consulting project for an insurance company which has been a huge time-spender, and I also started doing a few extra activities in my church, so spare time has been limited.

I haven't been baking as much as I was last summer, but not because I haven't wanted to!  I do still keep up with the sandwich bread, because my family (the kids in particular) won't eat anything else.  And I just got a new Viking 7 qt mixer that is awesome!  I can mix up the dough for four 1.5 lb loaves at once!  And then I was able to give my old KA to a friend who disn't have a stand mixer.  Win/win, if you ask me.

I haven't been checking into TFL much because of the aforementioned lack of spare time, but I subbed to this thread way back, so I received a notice in my email that someone had replied to it.  That's a nice feature to have here, when you have dropped off the face of the earth! =0) 

 

Richard L Walker's picture
Richard L Walker

Tuna cans frustrate me these days.  They used to be perfect for English muffins, crumpets, etc ... then they changed the design so you only get one end you can cut out making the can worthless for cooking.

LizziTremayne's picture
LizziTremayne

hmmm... due to this new design,  if you really want them to turn into rings, you can take the big ones and

...mark them with a Sharpie pen

...put them in a vise (gently, and with a bit of rubber sheeting (inner tubing?) or a soft cloth between the tin and the vise clamp...) 

...cut them with a grinder with a metal cutting blade

... and smooth them with sandpaper

... you should be able to get 2 or 3 rings from each one....  It's a bit of effort, but if you want them, they're there!

Good Luck!

 

walgenbe's picture
walgenbe

Does anyone know how to covert this recipe to grams?  I've tried to do all my baking by weight for consistent results and also I'm in love with my new scale.  How wet should the batter be for craggy muffins.  I'm trying this out for the first time today, but love muffins with those lovely big holes in them.  any advice would be most appreciated.  

 ~emilie

 PS I weighed the flour (king arthur A-P) and it's about 135 g per cup.  My dough is quite wet, possibly too wet to knead.   

Nanreyn's picture
Nanreyn

 I made this recipe for the first time today.  I was lucky and got beautiful nooks and crannies in my muffins.  I used the 2 cups flour in the mix as suggested, and placed the 3/4 cup on my work surface off to the side.  I gently kneaded my dough working as much of the flour in as necessary so that my dough was nice and soft but didn't stick to my hands.  It took about 5 minutes and used maybe half of the flour. 

Pat the dough out to the proper thickness on a well floured surface.  If your muffins stick to the work surface, use a floured spatula to gently pry them loose amd move them to semolina covered parchment paper for 45 minute rest.

Using this method, the weight of the flour is not so important.  You just keep adding flour during the kneading process until the dough is where you want it.

My muffins were perfect!  What a great way to use that throwaway starter!

 

Nancy Reynolds

LizziTremayne's picture
LizziTremayne

I'm new to this site, but have been playing with sourdough for the past 45 years...  I have heard the term a few times on this site...  and the term "throwaway starter" is complete anathema to me! I can't, truly, throw away any of the wonderful bugs!

I can't imagine ever throwing any away... I have a 1 litre jar that I use for sourdough and if I don't have time to turn it into pancakes or bread or WHATEVER, it goes back into the pot ... 

Have a great day!!!!

 

LizziTremayne's picture
LizziTremayne

I'm new to this site, but have been playing with sourdough for the past 45 years...  I have heard the term a few times on this site...  and the term "throwaway starter" is complete anathema to me! I can't, truly, throw away any of the wonderful bugs!

I can't imagine ever throwing any away... I have a 1 litre jar that I use for sourdough and if I don't have time to turn it into pancakes or bread or WHATEVER, it goes back into the pot ... 

Have a great day!!!!

 

LizziTremayne's picture
LizziTremayne

Well done, you just DID convert it to grams!   Every different flour will have a different mass for a particular volume, and like someone replied to you, it's not really very significant, as you do the kneading by feel...

Have fun!

L

kranieri's picture
kranieri

thanks for the recipe, just used up my leftover starter and made these little morning treats. or afternoon. or dinner. delicious!

zoniguana's picture
zoniguana

They're even better when I don't burn them!

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