What are English Muffins?
English Muffins, aka English Breakfast Muffins, are an essential breakfast item. They are savoury flat rounds of bread. Traditionally they are cooked on an AGA stovetop, but they can also be cooked in a cast iron pan. This makes them different to a lot of other bread types, as they don’t necessarily require oven cooking.
What do English Muffins Taste Like?
Despite connotations of the word ‘muffin’, English Muffins aren’t sweet. They are actually traditionally eaten at breakfast along with other traditional British cooked breakfast foods (eggs, bacon, etc.).
They taste like most bread items, bready! Yet with a crispy outer and a soft squidgy middle. Hard to describe I guess – you’ll just have to try!
Why Spelt Muffins?
As you may have noticed already from my other recipes, I have a slight obsession with spelt flour. Not only does spelt flour have a deeper flavour which is way more tasty than popular processed white flours, but it is also better for your tummy!
I have issues with some gluten products, yet I don’t struggle at all with spelt.
It is an ancient grain that hasn’t been tampered with in the same way that most other flours have been.
Check out my other yummy tummy-friendly spelt recipes here:
What Tastes Good With English Muffins?
I love eating my English Muffins with both savoury and sweet toppings.
Cut them in half lengthways so you end up with two flat rounds. Toast them for optimum tastiness – if you have a bagel setting I recommend using this so you only toast the inside cut side. Alternatively, you can toast the cut side under the grill for a few minutes.
Then smother them in plant butter and raspberry jam, or cook up some vegan bacon to sandwich in between the slices with a coating of a good quality tomato ketchup.
My sister likes to eat them with marmite, but I can’t stand the stuff. As long as you don’t tell me, I won’t care…!
I used to make River Cottage’s English Muffins and they always turned out great. I adapted them to suit my change in diet, and they turned out even better. So here is my adaptation of River Cottage’s Recipe:
Spelt English Muffins
- Electric Mixer
- Cast Iron Pan
- 500 g Spelt Flour I use bakers blend
- Rapeseed Oil splash
- 5 g Dried Yeast
- Polenta for sprinkling
- 10 g Salt
- 325 ml Warm Water
- If you are kneading the mix by hand: mix the flour, yeast, salt and water in a bowl to form a sticky dough. Mix in a splash of oil and then turn the dough out on to a clean work surface. Knead until smooth and silky.
- If you are mixing with an electric mixer: fit the dough hook on to the mixer and add the flour, yeast, salt and water to the mixer bowl. Mix on low speed until combined, then add in a splash of the oil and leave to knead for about 10 minutes, until smooth and silky.
- Shape the dough into a round, coat with a little extra oil and place in a clean bowl. Leave to rise, covered with a plastic bag, until doubled in size
- Tip the dough out on to the work surface and press all over to deflate
- Divide into 9 pieces, shape each into a round and flatten to about 1–2cm. Dust them all over with polenta (as an alternative to the traditional semolina)
- Leave to prove on a linen cloth or wooden board, covered with a plastic bag, until doubled in size
- Heat up your oven to about 160 degrees (fan)
- Heat your cast iron pan on medium heat
- Place the muffins into the pan to cook, make sure not to put too many in the pan as you will need to flip them over
- Cook for about a minute and then gently turn them over
- Cook slowly for a further 10 minutes, turning every now and then (you may need to adjust the heat if they seem to be colouring too fast, or not fast enough)
- Place the muffins onto a tray and cook for a further 5 more minutes in the oven just to make sure they are cooked in the middle
- Repeat the cooking process with the remaining muffins
- Leave the muffins to cool on a wire rack
- Slice, toast, and cover in your favourite topping and enjoy!