Friday, September 21, 2012

English Crumpets

 

      I really miss the Food Network channel..I mean really really miss it. It's a cruel thing for someone like me who adores cooking and baking to live in a country that doesn't really care about it. It's not to say that the Dutch do not like food..they do, but it's different here. I've tried watching their one cooking channel here several times..and man is it bad. I love it when they make something that is labeled "typically american"and then proceed to ruin the whole entire thing. It happens..We do it aswell in the U.S. when it comes to making certain things aswell. I can however get my cooking and baking fix by watching the BBC channels we have here! I've become a big fan of the Hairy Bikers . I watch them all the time. I also watch Jamie Oliver alot aswell and then any other various show I am able to catch. I have found myself craving things I've never had before. I want a Bakewell Tart now, toad in the hole is another one and I finally tried this one..An English Crumpet!

A crumpet is like an english muffin but isn't split open.It's soft and spongy and wonderful! You can eat it like a pancake but it's way more firm..it's portable if you need it to be. You can cover it in butter and maple syrup,or melt cheese on top of it, and I recently saw Jamie Oliver dip cooled ones into whisked eggs and allowed them to soak the eggs up,then fried it in a pan with some butter until the egg batter is cooked and topped it with bacon and maple syrup or brown sauce ( that would be something similar to our A-1 steak sauce.) I'm gonna skip the whole brown sauce thing and stick with maple syrup thank you very much.

These arent hard to make but they do require some time. You let the batter rise for an hour and you cook them in a pan using Egg Rings (if possible buy ones that are about 4 inches but a 3 inch would work just fine aswell.). I found mine at a dollar store here and they come in all shapes and sizes. If you don't have egg rings then I am told a small can of pineapple can be used. You need to open not only the top but the bottom aswell. If you only have one this will take you awhile since it makes anywhere between 12-16 crumpets and they take about 8-10 mins of cooking on one side and then a further 3-4 mins on the other side. These are well worth the effort though! You can freeze whatever is left over and pull them out throughout the week as you need them. Simply pop them into a toaster and top with your favorite syrups,fruits,cheeses or whatever you like! Do not forget to add the baking soda..that is what gives them the cool holes on the surface!

Crumpets

1 cup Warm Milk
2-1/2 tsp.Sugar
1-1/2 cups Lukewarm Water,divided
3 tsp. Active Dry Yeast
3 cups All-purpose Flour
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
Butter for the pan

Combine the warm milk,sugar and 1 cup of the lukewarm water in a large bowl. Sprinkles over the yeast,then set aside for 7-8 minutes or until foamy.

Add the flour and salt and use a wooden spoon to beat the mixture for 3-4 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm,draught-free place for 1 hour or until mixture is well risen and bubbly.

In a small bowl,combine the 1/2 cup of lukewarm water with the baking soda and stir into the batter. Cover and set aside for 10 minutes.

Heat some butter up in a large non-stick frying pan over low heat and place 3-4  greased 4 inch egg rings in the pan ( I could only fit 3 into my pan.) Spoon about 1/3 cup of crumpet batter into each ring. Cook the crumpets 8-10 minutes or until they have risen,the bases are a deep golden brown and the tops are dry to the touch,with a few small holes.

Remove rings ( If you aren't using rings with a handle then please be careful when removing them! they get hot so use a pair of oven mits or better yet,tongs!),turn crumpets and cook for a further 3-4 minutes or until the tops are golden brown. Transfer to a plate,cover loosely with foil and keep warm in a low heated oven if you want. Wash,dry and grease rings before cooking each batch. Serve warm with butter,jam,syrup..whatever you like!

Yield: 12-16 Crumpets
Source: Mastering The Art of Baking