English Muffin Bread

Quick Post: This bread couldn’t be easier! It doesn’t require kneading, either – mix it up, dump it in the pan, rest and bake. It finished loaf is light, the interior is moist and full of holes which become super crunchy when toasted. It’s so weird that this really is similar to an English muffin with all the nooks and crannies. The butter, honey or jam fills all the holes up and makes for a really crunchy and tasty toast. Thanks for reading, enjoy!

**My Canon camera is not working right at all! (sad face) I have to take pictures with my phone until I can get a new one…**

English Muffin Toasting Bread – adapted from King Arthur Flour

  • 3 cups ap flour (I used bread flour)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon yeast
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or olive oil
  • cornmeal, to sprinkle in pan
Directions –

1) Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and instant yeast in a large mixing bowl.

2) Combine the milk, water, and oil in a separate, microwave-safe bowl, and heat to between 120°F and 130°F. Be sure to stir the liquid well before measuring its temperature; you want an accurate reading. If you don’t have a thermometer, the liquid will feel quite hot (hotter than lukewarm), but not so hot that it would be uncomfortable as bath water.

3) Pour the hot liquid over the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl.

4) Beat at high speed for 1 minute. The dough will be very soft.

5) Lightly grease an 8 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ loaf pan, and sprinkle the bottom and sides with cornmeal

6) Scoop the soft dough into the pan, leveling it in the pan as much as possible.

7) Cover the pan, and let the dough rise till it’s just barely crowned over the rim of the pan. When you look at the rim of the pan from eye level, you should see the dough, but it shouldn’t be more than, say, 1/4″ over the rim. This will take about 45 minutes to 1 hour, if you heated the liquid to the correct temperature and your kitchen isn’t very cold. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 400°F.

8) Remove the cover, and bake the bread for 22 to 27 minutes, till it’s golden brown and its interior temperature is 190°F.
9) Remove the bread from the oven, and after 5 minutes turn it out of the pan onto a rack to cool. Let the bread cool completely before slicing.

French Toast

I have a great go-to recipe for french toast, but I decided to try something different to go along with the Challah bread I made. This one is an Alton Brown recipe that seemed kinda boring, but I didn’t want the custard to overshadow the homemade Challah bread. I love cinnamon in my custard and this has none, and it doesn’t even call for vanilla! I dried out the sliced pieces of Challah in the oven for about 5 minutes at 350 degrees so they would soak up even more custard. This recipe also has two separate cooking steps that is supposed to ensure crunchy outside and creamy inside texture.

Verdict: Eh…next time, I’ll go with my “recipe doctoring” instincts and add the cinnamon and vanilla – maybe even a little fresh nutmeg. The plain Challah was flat too, but when toasted the flavors were turned up a notch. I will make a richer Challah next time. No worries! I love trying out new recipes anyway 🙂 Thanks for reading, enjoy!

French Toast – adapted from Food Network

  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons honey, warmed in microwave for 20 seconds
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 8 (1/2-inch) slices day-old or stale country loaf, brioche or challah bread
  • 4 tablespoons butter

Directions

In medium size mixing bowl, whisk together the half-and-half, eggs, honey, and salt. You may do this the night before. When ready to cook, pour custard mixture into a pie pan and set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Dip bread into mixture, allow to soak for 30 seconds on each side, and then remove to a cooling rack that is sitting in a sheet pan, and allow to sit for 1 to 2 minutes.

Over medium-low heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter in a 10-inch nonstick saute pan. Place 2 slices of bread at a time into the pan and cook until golden brown, approximately 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove from pan and place on rack in oven for 5 minutes. Repeat with all 8 slices. Serve immediately with maple syrup, whipped cream or fruit.