Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Sourdough English Muffins

 There are many health benefits for using Sourdough rather than tradition yeast breads. I will post links later but I want to share some amazing sourdough recipes I have foundMy family loves bread so much but after reading so much on how "bad" wheat is, it was stressing me out b/c seriously what will my kids eat if they don't eat wheat and dairy? So we are trying to make small changes.. never perfect, but focusing on small changes.
Here is a recipe I can't wait to try.

Erin’s Sourdough English Muffins

  • 1/2 cup sourdough starter (thick or thin)
  • 1 cup liquid (water*, milk, fermented dairy, coconut milk…)
  • 2 cups flour (your choice)
  • add-ins like seeds, dried fruit, or chopped nuts… (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey (or any other sweetener)
  • 3/4 to 1 teaspoon sea salt of choice
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
*Note: The English muffins will turn out if you use water instead of full fat or fermented dairy and if you add more flour initially for easier kneading. However, the results will not be as soft on the outside or as tender on the inside once you’ve finished the cooking.
Place 1/2 cup sourdough starter (thick or thin) into a medium size bowl. Pour onto that the 1 cup of liquid. This is the first place where the recipe is very flexible. Your liquid could be water, milk, any fermented dairy, coconut milk… Stir to combine starter and liquid. In this photo, I chose to water down some of my homemade yogurt. If your sourdough starter is very stiff, you might need an extra 1/4 cup of liquid. I have never added extra liquid.
Sourdough English Muffins
Once combined, add 2 cups of flour to the mixture. This is the second place where the recipe is very flexible. Use any combination of flours. I have used white wheat, whole wheat, and rye. I know there are a lot of spelt users out there and sprouted flour users, too. It’ll all work! The only flour I question is rice flour, but if used in combination with another flour, it might even work.
Sourdough English Muffins
Stir well to combine. Along with the flour, I often add in a couple tablespoons of ground flax seed or poppy and caraway seeds (when I make delicious rye sourdough english muffins). The soaking affects the seeds as well as the flour. So, great! Cover and let your dough sit overnight, even up to 24 hours.
Sourdough English Muffins
Sourdough English Muffins
I’ve added these pictures to show you the thickness of my dough. The stiffness changes every time I make this recipe. Sometimes it is more wet. It really does not matter too much. In the morning, you will be able to tell that your sourdough has been at work.
Sourdough English Muffins
On top of your soaked dough, sprinkle 3/4 teaspoon salt (I use 1 teaspoon celtic sea salt), 1 teaspoon baking soda, and 1 tablespoon honey. Use a wooden spoon to push/cut/stir in your newly added ingredients. Don’t worry about incorporating it perfectly; you will be kneading it in just a moment.
This next part of the directions might feel a little strange, because you are kneading something that could be quite wet. I pour about 1 tablespoon of olive oil onto my counter and spread it around with my hand and then rub my hands together. I then dump out my dough onto the oiled spot and knead the dough for 2 to 3 minutes. The purpose of this kneading is to incorporate the honey, baking soda, and salt. After this, I take a pizza cutter and separate my dough into 8 equal portions.
Sourdough English Muffins
As you can see, the dough is quite wet. Up until this point we have not added any new flour. At this time, I do find it helpful to dust my hands with flour before I shape each muffin. You might prefer to use all-purpose flour for this dusting, or sprouted flour where the sprouting has done the work of soaking. I usually use what is on hand… whole wheat. Whatever.
With dusted hands, pick up a portion and gently shape it into your muffin. My muffins are usually about 1 finger thick and maybe 2-1/2 inches wide. Sometimes they are nice and round. Sometimes not. Size and shape are not important here. Place your muffins on a lightly floured or cornmealed (greased might work if you want to stay away from newly added flour) sheet of wax paper or parchment paper. Cover with a dish towel and let rest for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Sourdough English Muffins
About 5 minutes before you want to griddle/skillet your muffins, set the heat to mediumish. I usually set my cast iron to 4, the front of my stovetop griddle to 5 1/2, and the back of the griddle to 4 1/2. Each place distributes heat differently. You will figure out what works best for your situation. You don’t want the muffins to brown too quickly because the insides need a chance to cook. I also have found that I do not need to grease my skillet/griddle. Do what you think is best here as well.
Carefully transfer the muffins onto your heat source. Cook the muffins for about five minutes on each side. You can take a little peek every now and again to make sure the bottoms are not getting too brown. When it is time to flip, do this carefully. Your muffins will plump up beautifully, and you do not want to deflate them by being too rough. Cook for the second five minutes. Now, if you find that the outside edge of your muffin is not as done as you like, feel free to pop these into a 350 degree oven for 5-10 minutes. I do not bother doing this.
Sourdough English Muffins

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