I’m on a bit of a bread kick. Make that a BIG bread kick. A few weeks ago, I attempted to make my own English Muffins. They were delicious, but they were a lot of trouble – multiple risings, shaping into disks and cooking them on a skillet on the stove was a little too trial-or-error (leaning more toward the error side with several burnt muffins).
A few days later, I discovered English Muffin BREAD and it has become my must-have bread each week. Though I consider it an extremely easy bread, it’s still full of benefits that often come with much more trouble – a crunchy crust, chewy inside, with all the bubbly nooks and crannies that English Muffins are known for. The best part is that it’s over and done with in about 2 1/2 hours. I love to start it right after dinner so it’s coming out of the oven just before bedtime and waiting to greet me the next morning for breakfast.
English Muffin Bread (not changed much at all from the original)
– INGREDIENTS –
2 3/4 cups warm water (NOT hot)
1 Tablespoon kosher salt
1 Tablespoon + 1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 Tablespoon + 1 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
5 3/4 cups bread flour
Non-stick cooking spray
1 Tablespoon melted butter
– PREPARATION –
1. Stir all ingredients in the bowl of your stand mixer, fitted with the paddle until just combined. You’ll have a very sticky and “shaggy” dough.
2. Spray a piece of plastic wrap with nonstick spray and lay it loosely over the mixing bowl. Let it rise for about an hour in a warm place, or until it doubles in size and looks bubbly.
3. Prepare your pans by spraying them with nonstick spray and dusting the bottom and sides of the pan with cornmeal. Make sure you tap out any excess.
4. Spray your hands with the nonstick spray and divide the dough evenly into the two pans. They should be no more than halfway full. If needed, add a third pan. Cover each pan with plastic wrap sprayed with nonstick spray and let it rise again, btw 30 minutes and 1 hour. You’re ready bake with the dome of the dough rises just above the edge of the pan.
5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and make sure it’s ready and waiting for your bread instead of the other way around. This dough can rise TOO much.
6. Set the timer for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, pull the loaves out and brush them with melted butter. Put them back in and bake them for 10 more minutes until they are golden brown.
7. Immediately turn them out to cool completely before slicing.
This bread keeps at room temperature for about a week, tightly wrapped. If you can’t eat it all in that time, wrap in plastic wrap and then foil to freeze for up to 3 months. The bread can be thawed first, or sliced and toasted from frozen.
I love this bread with a little creamed honey and cinnamon. Creamed honey is just one of the gazillion things I love using my stand mixer for.
Creamed Cinnamon Honey
– INGREDIENTS –
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
– PREPARATION –
Put the honey in your stand mixer fitted with the paddle and crank up the speed. Walk away, read a book, drink some coffee or otherwise occupy yourself for about 20 minutes while the mixer does its thing. When you come back, you’ll have wonderful, creamy in texture and much lighter in color, honey. You can use it just like this, or you can sprinkle in some ground cinnamon to make it extra delicious.