Friday, January 22, 2010

English Muffins with Teff Flour and Flax Seeds

I love English muffins, but I've never even attempted to make them since they've always seemed rather mysterious to me. Do you boil them like bagels? Do you need a special English muffin baking sheet? How the heck do you get all the "nooks and crannies"?

I was thumbing through the pages of The New Laurel's Kitchen and came across an illustration of an English muffin being cooked in a skillet. English muffins are made on the stove? Who knew.

The recipe actually sounded fairly easy--it's just basic bread dough shaped into patties and cooked on a hot griddle.

First of all, here's the recipe for the dough:
Basic Bread Dough

2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
6 cups whole wheat bread flour (I replaced about 20% of the bread flour with teff flour)
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/4 cups warm water
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons oil or butter
**I added some flax seeds

Mix the yeast with 1/2 cup water and let it sit for several minutes. Put the flour and salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the middle of the flour, add the yeast mixture, the honey, the oil, and 2 1/4 cups water. Mix until you have a cohesive batter. If the mixture is just too sticky, add some extra flour.

Knead the dough for 20-30 minutes by hand, or 10-15 minutes in a mixer with a dough hook. Put the dough in a clean bowl and cover with plastic wrap; let rise until it's at least doubled in size.

Punch down the dough and let it rise a second time, again until it's doubled in size.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured board and flatten it. Divide the dough in half and shape it into two smooth rounds. Let the dough rest for about 10 minutes. Shape each dough into a loaf and put into two greased bread pans. Loosely cover the bread pans and let rise until doubled.

Preheat your oven to 350F. The breads should be done after baking for an hour, but check periodically to ensure that they don't over-bake.

Note--The cookbook has very detailed instructions, I think the recipe covers about 3 or 4 pages. I am just giving you the basics.

English Muffins
The above recipe makes 8 English muffins and 1 loaf of bread

Knead the dough as usual and divide it into 2 pieces. For the dough that will be made into bread, proceed as above.

For the 1/2 of the dough that will made into English muffins, follow these directions. Put a cup or 2 of warm water into a bowl. Wet your hands with the water, and continue kneading the dough. Keep kneading and wetting your hands until the dough seems quite over-kneaded, and rather wet. Let the dough go through two rises as in the bread recipe.

Turn the dough out onto a well floured board and flatten it. Divide it into 8 pieces. Form each piece into a round and set on a well floured baking sheet. Lightly cover the muffins and let them rise until the are quite saggy, but not over 1-inch high.

Heat your griddle or skillet to moderately hot. Using a spatula, transfer the first muffin onto the hot skillet, flour side down. Add 3 more muffins to the skillet. Let them start to brown on the bottom and then turn over. Keep flipping each muffin to ensure that it doesn't over-brown. They are done when the sides are springy, and the inside is moist but not wet.

Enjoy your homemade English muffins!


  1. They look so great! I haven't tried to make my own English Muffins, but they really do seem easy.