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Friday
Nov082013

English Muffin Bread

Back in the late 80’s when we moved from Southern California to the Central Coast, we settled in a very small beach town, and just down the hill from us was a little market (Deluxe Foods) that had its own bakery.  We had vacationed in this little town the year before and fell in love with the ocean, the forest and this little market that made the most amazing English muffin bread.  Now, I’m not saying we uprooted our kids from their schools and dragged them north for half a state just so I could be near this market and their English Muffin Bread, but by now you know me well enough to know that could possibly maybe have been true.

I’d never had English muffin bread before, but I soon found out that its major claim to fame was in the toasting.  If you’ve never had it before, you’re in for a treat.  The trick is to slice it just a little on the thick side and when you toast it, the outsides get toasty and crisp and the inside stays dense and chewy and tastes like an English muffin, only better.  No nooks and crannies, but you won’t miss them. 

I can’t believe I’m already at the third paragraph and I haven’t told you the best part yet.  Here it is… this is the easiest peasiest bread you’ll ever make.  Yes, it has yeast in it, but there’s no kneading, just stirring.  No kidding.   From start to finish is less than 2 hours, which makes you already very close to a warm loaf all for yourself. 

Our little Central Coast town is no longer so little or quaint, but Deluxe Foods is still there, and I do miss it.  Not sure they still make their English Muffin bread, but I’ve got my own to make me happy now.  Here’s the recipe…

English Muffin Bread

Click here for a printable recipe

Recipe courtesy King Arthur Flour

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon instant yeast (not active dry 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.

Click here to ask a question or leave a comment

Reader Comments (18)

I've made this muffin bread from King Arthur and it's so good! I try to keep a loaf on hand for toast in the morning. And I love how easy it is to make. Nice photos!

November 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLiz Minor

I always order the english muffin toast from the little breakfast cafe here in Trenton. I never thought of being able to make it myself, but it looks so easy! Thanks for the great recipe!

November 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJamica Holland

You've talked me into making English Muffin Bread for breakfast tomorrow morning. I may just top it with a fried egg!

November 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBarbara Kieferland

Who knew something so good could be that easy to make! Can't wait to try it!

November 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCandace

I would like to make this english muffin bread today, but I don't have instant yeast. Can I use regular yeast instead?

November 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVera

Thanks, Liz!

November 8, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

I haven't used active dry yeast in this recipe, Vera, but if you'd like to try, do not add it to the dry ingredients in step one. Heat the milk and water to 110 degrees and add the yeast. Stir to dissolve and wait about 5 minutes for the yeast to "bloom". Stir in the oil, add this to the dry ingredients, and proceed with the recipe. Hope this works for you!

November 8, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

I have made this recipe a number of times, and have loved it every time. I think this bread has more substance and body, so much nicer for Eggs Benedict!

November 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKaty

Thanks, Katy! I'll have to give it a try with eggs benedict. Great idea!

November 9, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

I would like to make this today but have to get some yeast. Is instant yeast the same as bread machine yeast?

November 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBecca

Yes, Becca, instant yeast, rapid rise yeast and bread machine yeast are all basically the same thing and can be used interchangeably.

November 9, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

Just took a loaf of this bread out of the oven. It looks like it took me all day to make it! Couldn't wait to cut into it and slathered a slice with butter. I think I'm going to have to make another loaf very soon. I have a feeling this one's not going to last very long. Thanks for the great recipe!

November 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeverly

I love English muffins so this looks amazing to me. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe.

November 10, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterShari Kelley

You're so welcome, Shari! Great to hear from you!

November 11, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

I have always been intimidated by recipes that include yeast. I have tried in the past and have not always been successful so have stayed away. I have decided to conquer my fear by making something every week on Mondays just for practice - not to serve at a dinner party. I just took this out of the oven and it looks like success! Next week I'll practice dinner rolls and if it works, I'll make them for Thanksgiving!

November 11, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMary

That's awesome, Mary. This is such a great bread to practice on. Coincidentally, I just took a loaf of it out my oven too. It doesn't seem to last very long around here. Let us know how your dinner rolls turn out!

November 11, 2013 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

I have made this several times and it always comes out great.

February 8, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterEva Chancy

So great, Eva! Nice to hear from you!

February 8, 2014 | Registered CommenterPatrice Berry

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