Monday, December 12, 2011
English Muffin Bread
In the past few months, in a further attempt to decrease our breakfast cereal consumption, I started making English muffins once a week. I would usually make them on Thursday nights to have for breakfast with scrambled eggs on Friday, with any leftovers making their way to our Sunday morning breakfast. I tried numerous muffin recipes and finally decided this one was our favorite. They really are great muffins.
I found that I had to bake the muffins in two batches on my griddle, which required a lot of attention with the flipping, testing, dropping more muffins, etc. Not hard by any means, just time consuming.
Then I saw this recipe for English muffin bread. I was intrigued! Could we really have the flavor of English muffins in an easy to bake bread?
Yes, we could.
Admittedly, the texture is a bit different than the muffins because of the shape and baking difference, but there are plenty of nooks and crannies to soak up the butter and jelly, the taste is great, and I love the fact that I can just spoon the dough into the bread pans and put them in the oven (after they rise), not worrying about standing over a griddle for 30 minutes.
The other great thing about English muffin bread (as compared to regular bread) is that you do NOT knead it, you just stir it together until mixed, cover it and let it rise. So fast and easy!
It really is best toasted and is wonderful as a sandwich with eggs or spread with jam or just plain butter.
The family voted unanimously that they prefer it to store bought whole wheat bread as toast with breakfast.
Recipe: (From Mel's Kitchen Cafe)
Yield: 2 loaves
2-3/4 cups very warm water
1-1/2 Tablespoons instant yeast
2 teaspoons salt
1-1/2 Tablespoons sugar
5-1/2-6 cups all-purpose flour (I use at least half white whole wheat)
In a large bowl or bowl of an electric stand mixer, combine the water, sugar, salt and yeast. Mix. Add half of the flour. Mix. Add remaining flour. Mix. The dough will be very, very sticky. Don’t be alarmed! Cover the bowl and let the dough rise until doubled. Stir down the dough with a wooden spoon.
Grease two loaf pans (8 1/2-inch by 4 1/2-inch) generously with cooking spray. Divide the dough between the loaf pans. I just spoon it in there. The dough should fill the pans about halfway. Cover the loaves with lightly greased plastic wrap and let the bread rise until doubled. It will look puffy and bubbly.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25-28 minutes until lightly golden brown on top and baked through. Remove from the oven and turn the bread out onto a cooling rack. Butter the tops while still warm.
This bread can be frozen and/or it lasts, covered or bagged, at room temperature for several days