Saturday, July 28, 2012

CINNAMON RAISIN ENGLISH MUFFINS

According to the recipe card, I first made these English muffins on June 14, 1985.  I used to write the date on the recipe card when I made the recipe.  I don't do it so much anymore.  Probably because I have so many recipes on other things beside cards.  I have to admit it is fun to see how often and when I made the recipe.  I have made them with craisins and chopped dates (a special favorite of ours). 

When I first made them, I wasn't using much whole wheat flour with baking.  I remember once trying to get my mother to use whole wheat flour in my biscuits.  She told me she ate enough of whole wheat flour when she was a kid. That's all they had. She only used all-purpose flour in recipes.  Now I use all whole wheat pastry flour. I prefer the pastry flour over just whole wheat flour.  It is ground finer and has a milder taste than whole wheat flour.  I would suggest going half and half with all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour.  Then you will have a multi-grain muffins. This is how you can get used to a different taste.  Some recipes are better being multi-grain instead of whole wheat.  It just takes experimenting. 

We don't usually slice them, but eat them whole like we would a biscuit. 

I hope you will try this recipe.  It is one that you can easily multi-task while making them.  You only have to knead for 2 minutes.  Twice you let the dough rise for 45 minutes (just set the timer and if you go longer than 45 minutes, it won't hurt) During the last 10-minute rest, you can turn your oven on, be getting the cookie sheets out,  pour cornmeal in a dish, and finding whatever you are going to "cut" them with. You won't be disappointed.


CINNAMON RAISIN ENGLISH MUFFINS

Ingredients:

1   cup milk(skim)
1/4   cup water
1/4   cup butter(light butter)
4  1/2  -  5   cups of flour(whole wheat pastry flour
1/4   cup light brown sugar
1   tablespoon cinnamon
1   teaspoon salt
1   tablespoon yeast
2   eggs
1   cup raisins, craisins, or chopped dates
cornmeal

Directions:
     Heat milk, water, and butter in small pot over medium heat until very warm.  (I heat until the butter is almost melted and stir until completely melted--almost 120 degrees F)

 
     Meanwhile combine 2 cups of flour, with brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and yeast in a bowl with a whisk.  

     In a large mixing bowl, add warm liquid with flour mixture and two eggs; beat 2 minutes at medium speed of the mixer.  Clean sides of bowl as needed.  


      Stir in 2  1/2 cups flour and 1 cup of raisins, craisins, or chopped dates on slow speed.  Dough will be like a thick batter.

 
     Cover with a cloth and let rise in warm place until light and doubled in size, 30 - 45 minutes.  


     Dough will still be very sticky.  On a well-floured surface, pour out dough. (1) Sprinkle additional flour over top and knead dough until smooth and elastic about 2 minutes.  (2)To knead, grab one side of dough and pull to center and then push down with both hands. (3)  Turn dough 1/4 away around and repeat. (4)  Continue to work the dough around 1/4 turn each time grabbing the top side and pulling to center and then pushing down with both hands until smooth and elastic. 




 After about 2 minutes when the dough is smooth and elastic, flip over.



      Cover dough with a towel and let it sit and rest for 10 minutes.

     Roll out with rolling pin to 3/8 inch thickness.  Cut into 3 - inch rounds. (I have a glass that is just this side---I used to use a tuna fish can.  I removed the top of the can as normal with a can opener. After I had removed the tuna, I cleaned the can and used it to cut my muffins.  It is about 3  1/4 inches in diameter. Worked really well to cup the dough.)


     Cut all the rounds you can, rework the scraps and repeat process.  Continue til you have used all the dough.  

 
     Lightly press each side of the muffin in cornmeal.  Place on ungreased cookie sheets.  Cover with cloth again and let rise until light and doubled in size about 30 - 45 minutes.


     Bake at 375 degrees F 7 minutes.  Turn the muffins over and bake 7 minutes longer.


     Cool on wire rack.  I made 22  whole wheat muffins.


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