At first glance, the recipe for English muffins doesn't seem terribly different than any normal biscuit. I half expected them to basically be regular biscuits when they were done cooking. Happily, I was totally wrong.
These biscuits came out with a crispy outside and a chewy inside. Just like English muffins are supposed to have. And once I looked at the recipe more closely, these muffins actually have more in common with pizza dough than they do with regular biscuits. For starters, they use yeast instead of a chemical leavener like baking powder. And secondly, they contain no fat. Sugar, yes, but no oil or butter of any kind.
- Arm your stand mixer with your dough hook and dissolve the yeast and sugar in 1 cup of the water. Allow to foam for five minutes and then mix in all ingredients besides the flour and water. Add the flour one cup at a time while the mixer is on low. Add the remaining water as well, until you get a dough that is smooth, not too stick, and elastic – very much like a pizza dough. You can add or withhold flour if you’ve found the right texture.
- Turn out onto the counter and knead just a bit, then allow to rise, covered and in a greased bowl, in a warm place for 1-2 hours. More time is better.
- Punch the dough down and roll out to 1/2 inch thick on a well-floured counter top. The dough will spring back a little bit – that is OK. Allow it to and when it stops moving, cut the muffins into 4-inch circles.
- Bake at 375 degrees F for 8 minutes or until bottom is browned. Turn and bake 7 minutes longer or until second side is browned.
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