Saturday, September 28, 2013

Homemade English Muffins - Julia Child

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite..."Let's not be muffin snobs; store bought are excellent." Those words were written by my beloved Julia, who then confused the issue by proferring a recipe for homemade English muffins. I, not unlike a climber who accepts the challenge of another summit simply because it's there, had to make them just to prove I could. Under normal circumstances, the recipe would have then been retired, but around that time sandwich size muffins were introduced into, and quickly disappeared from, supermarket shelves. We loved them, especially for certain types of burgers, so the recipe for English muffins was moved from inactive to active status, and I began to make them again. While these are made with yeast, no kneading is required and the batter is easy to work with. The muffins freeze well and are a great introduction to bread baking because of their kneadless nature. These days I use 5 inch rings to make large muffins, but I continue to use Julia's recipe. It's one of the best I've come across and I thought you might like to try it. Here's Julia's recipe.

Homemade English Muffins ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, courtesy of Julia Child


2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast dissolved in 1/4 cup warm water

2 tablespoons instant mashed potatoes softened in 1/2 cup boiling water

1/2 cup cold milk

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1-1/2 teaspoons salt dissolved in 3 tablespoons warm water

2 to 3 tablespoons softened butter or nonstick cooking spray


1) Place softened potatoes and milk in a large mixing bowl. Beat to combine. Stir in dissolved yeast. Add to flour and beat until a thick smooth batter forms, about 1 minute. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until batter has risen and large bubbles appear on the surface, about 1-1/2 hours. Batter must be bubbly before proceeding.

2) Stir batter down. Add salted water and beat vigorously for about a minute. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise again until bubbles appear on surface of batter, about 1 hour.

3) Brush insides of 3-inch rings with butter or spray with nonstick cooking spray. Butter or spray surface of griddle or frying pan and set over moderate heat. When drops of water dance on surface, scoop batter into rings. Batter should be about 3/8-inch thick to produce a muffin twice that size.

4) Cook muffins slowly on one side until bubbles which form near bottom pierce through top surface and top changes to a dryish gray color, about 6 to 8 minutes depending on the heat. Turn muffins, remove rings and let cook until they are a spotty token brown, about 1 minute. Remove to a rack to completely cool. Yield 10 to 12 3-inch muffins.

You might also enjoy these recipes:

Brussels and Liege Waffles - One Perfect Bite

Crumpets - One Perfect Bite

Gluten Free Pancakes - One Perfect Bite

This post is being linked to:

Wild Yeast - Yeast Spotting

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