Sourdough English Muffins

22 Sep

English muffins just happen to be one of my favorite breakfast foods (only partly because they form the base for eggs benedict) and they are one of those things that I keep meaning to make but never get around to doing. Enter Sourdough Surprises. This is the third time since I started baking with the group that the monthly project has coincided with something on my “to make” list! Perfect!

As always, I am kind of awe-struck that a bubbly mess of flour and water can so easily be turned into something like this:

These were a snap to make. Mix up the sourdough levain in the evening, let it burble away over night, then in the morning add baking soda, salt, sugar, and more flour. Roll out the dough, stamp out rounds, let them rest for a bit covered in cornmeal, and then cook them in a skillet until they are golden brown on both sides. You know how store-bought English muffin packages say “fork split”? Once cool, instead of using a knife to cut the English muffin in half, use the tines of a fork to perforate it through the middle, then gently tear it open with your hands. This gives you the craggy surface that is oh-so-crucial in a proper English muffin.

The muffins are a bit doughy inside immediately after cooking, but once they are cool, a quick trip through the toaster crisps them up and makes them the perfect vehicle for butter and jam. Look at all those little nooks and crannies!

I ended up with thirteen English muffins, which is more than I will be able to eat before they get stale, so I froze half of them. I’ll let you know how well they hold up in the freezer (I suspect they will be fine). In the meantime, I’ll be going through a lot of butter and jam. ;)

Check out the Sourdough Surprises blog to see what everyone else did with their English muffins this month. :)

(PS, I only just realized that the posting date is supposed to be the 20th and I’m posting two days late… I don’t know what happened there! ;) )

Sourdough English Muffins

Recipe adapted from The Pancake Handbook, via Baking Bites

The night before you want to bake, mix together:

1/2 cup active 100% hydration starter, recently fed and very bubbly

1 cup water

Once the started is dissolved in the water, stir in:

2 cups all purpose flour

Cover and let sit overnight (7 – 10 hours).

The next morning, the stuff in the bowl should be very bubbly and stretchy. Stir in:

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbsp granulated white sugar

Use a sturdy spoon to stir vigorously – it will be difficult (it’s a good workout!).

About 2 tbsp at a time, gradually stir in:

1 cup all purpose flour

Incorporate the flour until the dough loses its stickiness.

Turn it out onto a floured surface, roll it out to about 1/2″ thick, and cut into rounds with a floured cutter.

Transfer each round to a baking sheet covered in cornmeal immediately after cutting it out, otherwise the edges of the cut dough will stick back together again. Sprinkle the rounds with more cornmeal, cover with a tea towel, and let rest for about 45 minutes, until they are puffy.

Preheat a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat until very hot, then reduce the heat to about medium. Cook the English muffins on one side for about 5 minutes, until they are look tightly puffy, dry around the edges, and medium golden brown on the bottom. Flip and cook for another 5 minutes or so, until browned. When they are done, they should sound hollow if you tap them with your finger.

Cool completely on a rack before storing in an airtight container. To serve, split with a fork and toast lightly.

This post has been YeastSpotted!

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17 Responses to “Sourdough English Muffins”

  1. Bam's Kitchen September 22, 2012 at 7:37 am #

    Look at all of those yummy nooks and crannies for the butter and jam….Great job!

  2. wendyjv September 22, 2012 at 7:38 am #

    You’re really becoming a sourdough expert! They look wonderful. (I wonder if you could make crumpets with sourdough?)

    • Korena in the Kitchen September 22, 2012 at 8:41 am #

      You can definitely make sourdough crumpets, you just need crumpet rings. I tried to make them once using tin cans as rings and it absolutely DID NOT work!

  3. Jenni September 22, 2012 at 9:56 am #

    Oh beautiful job! Your english muffins look divine! You really got a lot of great nooks and crannies. That is funny that you got 13, I got 11! And yes, they were perfect vehicles for butter and jam! or bacon and eggs! :) And no worries about posting 2 days late – we are just happy that you baked with us again! :)

  4. Jessica September 22, 2012 at 10:58 am #

    Mmmm…your’s rose very nicely indeed :-)

  5. Shelley C September 22, 2012 at 11:23 am #

    First of all, your starter looks so healthy and fantastic. Wow!! Second of all, those English muffins look AMAZING! So high! So full of beautiful nooks and delicious crannies!! Is it a bad thing that I think I’d be able to eat 13 of those, no problem??? :)

  6. Julie Hashimoto-McCreery September 22, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

    Korena, these english muffins look delicious! I’ve always been intimidated by homemade english muffins, despite loving to eat them (and having a husband and kid who equally love them!). This recipe looks totally approachable. I can’t wait to add it to my list or recipes to try soon!

  7. Jane @ The Wayward Oven September 22, 2012 at 6:34 pm #

    Oh yum! Bread, butter and jam – a perfect trio.
    BTW, I’ve made crumpet rings out of packing tube – cut into short lengths and covered with thick foil. They work perfectly!

    • Korena in the Kitchen September 22, 2012 at 6:53 pm #

      Packing tubes and foil – that’s resourceful! The biggest problem I had with the tin cans was that the batter stuck to the sides no matter how much I greased them, but maybe I should try again…

  8. frugalfeeding September 23, 2012 at 5:07 am #

    The second I’ve seen in a day… they always look so good – a much better colour than a normal muffin.

  9. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide September 23, 2012 at 10:35 am #

    I can almost smell them they look so good!

  10. Hamilton Courtney November 6, 2012 at 4:08 am #

    Korena you are a baking wizard. All your various baked goods look phenomenal.

    These, I would immediately turn into eggs benedict!

    • Korena in the Kitchen November 6, 2012 at 10:31 am #

      Thank you Hamilton. They got turned into a sort-of eggs benny the next day :)

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