English Muffins

I had a grand idea of making breakfast sandwiches over the weekend but it didn’t start out very well. I picked up some English muffins from the store but they were so thin; they just fell apart when I attempted to separate them. At that moment I decided it was time to make my own muffins. I found a recipe that incorporated yogurt into the recipe and was so appealing that I gave it a try. After some adjustments this recipe turned out really good. As with many dough recipes, (even the ones I made in Kansas) I’m finding that I have to adjust the ratio of liquids and dry ingredients because of our high altitude and the dry desert air of New Mexico. If you are unsure of how to adjust your recipes you might try this guide: Cooking and Baking at High Altitudes by Betty Crocker. These muffins took about 2 hours from start to finish which was perfect for our weekend brunch. Our breakfast sandwiches turned out delicious with freshly made English muffins, lightly toasted with egg, cheese and bacon. They are also good with butter and jam too!

This recipe was adapted from “The Woks of Life“, one of my favorite blogs. You’ll need to assemble yeast, sugar, salt, warm water, flour, and plain yogurt. You’ll also need cornmeal or semolina for dusting.

Combine the warm water, yeast, salt and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Let stand for a few minutes to activate the yeast.

When the yeast has become foamy it’s time to add the yogurt. Stir well.

Begin to add the flour, 1 cup at a time stirring after each addition. When enough flour has been added, around the 3rd cup, attach the dough hook and knead on low speed until all the flour has been incorporated. If sticky add more flour (I added 1/3 cup more) until the dough pulls away from the bowl and is manageable to work with.

If you live in a low altitude and/or higher humidity area you may be able to use the original recipe from the Woks of Life which adds 3 2/3 cups flour. My dough came together with 3 1/3 cups flour.

Sprinkle flour on a work surface and add the sticky dough.

Knead the dough into a large disk.

Roll out the dough to 1/3 – 1/2 inch thickness.

A few years ago I picked up a box of English muffin rings at Goodwill. They are the perfect size to make a breakfast sandwich at 3.75″ in diameter. If you don’t have English muffin rings you can use a large biscuit cutter or a large mouth mason lid. Press down to cut out the English muffins.

Gently peel the cut English muffin round and place on a baking sheet that has been generously sprinkled with cornmeal or semolina.

I had enough dough to make 8 English muffins. I had to pull out another baking sheet for the last two.

Place a cup towel over top and let rise about an hour or until they double in size.

Heat a cast iron skillet and brush oil over the bottom of the pan. When the pan is hot turn the heat to medium. Place as many muffins in the pan that will fit easily and let cook for about 8 minutes or until the bottoms have turned golden brown. These were cooked in a 12 inch cast iron skillet. I had to clean the pan with a paper towel and brush more oil before cooking the remaining 3 muffins.

You can turn them over with your hands, they should be golden brown or close to before turning over to cook an additional 4 – 6 minutes. I found that the other side browned faster and you may need to turn the heat down so that they don’t burn. Tip them up to check how they are cooking often.

When done, place on a cooling rack. I couldn’t resist, I had to toast one and see how they tasted. A little bit of butter was all they needed. So So Good!!

Okay, so here’s how I made my breakfast sandwich which was better than any McMuffin btw! It starts with a freshly made English muffin toasted.

I used the same English muffin rings to make perfectly round eggs. In a nonstick skillet, heat over medium heat, and spray the bottom of the pan with cooking spray. Place the muffin rings in the skillet and crack an egg into each ring.

Gently run a fork through it to slightly blend the yolk through the white part. Let cook until the bottom of the egg is set. Remove the ring and turn the egg to cook on the other side.

To assemble the sandwich, toast the English muffin, add a slice of cheese (white American cheese). Return to the warm oven and melt cheese. Add the cooked egg and a slice of cooked bacon that has been cut in two. Salt and pepper to taste. Add cheese hash browns on the side.

English Muffins (adapted from The Woks of Life)

2 1/4 teaspoons Active or Rapid Rise Yeast
1 cup Warm Water
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 teaspoon Salt
2/3 cup Whole Yogurt
3 1/3 cups All Purpose Flour (High Altitude)
1/4 cup Cornmeal or Semolina, for sprinkling
Vegetable Oil, to brush on skillet

Add warm water, yeast, sugar and salt to a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer. Stir to dissolve. Allow to stand for 5 – 10 minutes for the yeast to activate. When the yeast is foamy and beginning to bubble, add the yogurt and stir well.

Begin to add the flour, 1 cup at a time, stirring after each addition. Attach the dough hook after the 3rd cup of flour and knead on low speed until all the flour has been incorporated. The dough will be sticky at this point. Add an additional 1/3 cup of flour and knead until all the flour has been incorporated and pulls away from the bowl. If dough is still sticky, add additional flour, up to 1/3 cup until the dough pulls away from the bowl and is manageable to work with. On a work surface, generously sprinkle flour and use to knead dough into a large disk. Let rest for a few minutes.

Set up a baking sheet with a sprinkle of cornmeal or semolina. Set aside.

Roll the dough out to 1/3″ to 1/2″ thickness. Use English muffin rings, large biscuit cutter or large mouth lid to cut dough into approximately 3.75″ circles. Place the cut dough onto the baking sheets to rise. The unused dough should be used to reshape, roll out and cut to form more muffins. Cover the muffins with a cup towel and let rise in a warm space approximately 1 hour or until the muffins have doubled in size.

Heat a cast iron griddle or skillet until hot. Brush vegetable oil to cover the bottom of the skillet. Add muffins and turn heat to medium and let cook approximately 8 minutes or until the bottoms have turned golden brown. Turn the muffins over to cook an additional 4 – 6 minutes. Lower the heat to medium low if using cast iron. Cast iron retains a higher heat and may burn the top of the muffins if heat is not reduced. Pull apart muffins with a fork. Serve toasted with butter and/or jam.

To make breakfast sandwich: Toast separated English muffin. When toasted, leave in oven and add a slice of cheese to melt. In a non-stick skillet over medium heat, spray with cooking spray. If you have muffin rings, place those in the pan and crack egg into each ring. Use a fork to gently blend the yolk through the white part of the egg. Cook until set on the bottom, remove the ring and turn the eggs to cook the other side. Add cooked egg to sandwich and add cooked bacon, sausage or ham. Salt and pepper to taste.

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