English Muffins

muffins&jam

Our friends Chris and Kristen gave us a lovely little jar of homemade Rainier cherry jam. Since so much effort went into making the jam, I didn’t want to spread it on commercially-baked goods. But what to make? I saw this post at A Tiger in the Kitchen and was overcome with the urge to make English Muffins. Cheryl used a recipe from The Bread Baker’s Apprentice, but it called for buttermilk; I feel comfortable substituting soymilk for regular milk and non-hydrogenized margarine for butter, but buttermilk is an enigma to me. So, I veganized a recipe that I found at Foodista.

The recipe said to let the dough rise for an hour, then to roll it out and cut it into circles with an English Muffin cutter. Not having an English Muffin cutter, I used a glass, but the dough was too tough for it to effectively cut through. I switched to a cookie cutter. Now, what I did not realize is that English Muffins are baked on a skillet instead of in the oven, much like a pancake. My recipe called for them to cook, covered, for 5-6 minutes per side. After about 5 minutes, I smelled burning. The resulting flat, charred, undercooked disks and stars (since that was the most appropriate cookie cutter I had) made a mockery of that sweet half-pint of preserved goodness in the fridge.

FAIL.

Determined to try again, I turned to my buddy Google for help, and within fractions of a second (0.29 to be exact) came across a vegan English muffin recipe at The Urban Vegan. I modified the cooking time a little bit (she said to do 4 minutes initially and then 2 minutes on the other side, but I found it better to do 3 minutes on both sides), and also covered mine with a lid while cooking, which seems to make them cook better.

english muffins

Vegan English Muffins (from Urban Vegan)

Makes 12-15 muffins

Starter:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon yeast

Dough:

  • 2 tablespoons non-hydrogenized margarine
  • 3/4 cup soymilk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon yeast
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 healthy teaspoons baking powder
  1. In a medium bowl, mix starter ingredients well. Cover and let sit overnight at room temperature, up to 12 hours. When ready, the starter will be spongy and with holes.
  2. Heat the soymilk, water and margarine in the microwave on high for about 1 minute until warm but not hot. In a large bowl, mix the starter, soymilk mixture and the remaining ingredients until smooth. The dough will be very sticky. Cover and let sit for about 90 minutes.
  3. Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls onto dry medium-hot skillet. Carefully pat dough into circles. Cook for 3 minutes. Flip, flatten with spatula, and cook for 3 more minutes.
  4. Let muffins cool for about 10 minutes.

I topped mine with C&K’s jam and a couple dabs of margarine, and made a ham, egg and cheese breakfast sandwich for David.

egg-a-muffin

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