Sunday, June 20, 2010
English Muffin Loaf
I'm back to my bread baking from Kneadlessly Simple. The first one I had to make was one that I had tried to make before we went to Texas, English muffin loaf. We love English muffins and so I thought that maybe this bread would work for us since we can't readily find English muffins here.
The first try was a mess. The recipe called for non-fat powdered milk. I couldn't find it here so I had to have it brought down to me when someone came from the States. Now the recipe calls for high-quality non-fat powdered milk but at that point I did not know the difference between low-quality and high-quality. Actually, what I now think that it means is a high heat dehydrated milk that bakers use, not the instant non-fat milk that you add water to to make milk.
My first try with the bread was bubbling along through the first rise but when I vigourously stirred in the "instant crystals," it seemed to lose all its gluten and just became a sticky glob. I went ahead and baked it, but it was very flat and tasteless.
Although the recipe was in Kneadlessly Simple, I called King Arthur Flour's help line and talked with a baker. He asked me what page the recipe was on, he pulled the book and we talked about how what happened. He felt that the problem was the powdered milk that I used. He also told me that King Arthur had a very popular English muffin loaf recipe and also a real English muffin recipe. The muffin recipe calls for mixing in a bread machine but I think it could be done in a stand mixer because after the dough is together then you roll it out and cut the muffins.
I still had visions of English muffins for breakfast, right out of my oven so I brought back the powdered non-fat milk from King Arthur Flours. Time to give the English muffin loaf recipe from Kneadlessly Simple another try. This time when I added the non-fat powdered milk the dough became a bit sticky but it didn't become a glutenless sticky glob although it was impossible to do as the recipe directs and cut with an oiled knife to divide it into two portions. Still I managed to get it into the loaf pans. It turned out "okay." I took one of the loaves to friends and they said it was good. Ned said it was good but not really like an English muffin. The crust was kind of a crisp chewy and the interior wasn't as textured or chewy as an English muffin. It did make a decent sandwich though. I thought that it was more trouble and time than the end result provided. I like a high return on my investment of time so I doubt that I will give this recipe another try.
My next bread may be the Potato Chive and Dill recipe. I found a beautiful bunch of dill that you usually can't find in San Miguel. I have chives growing on the terrace so it seems like I should be set. But wait.....I also need low-fat or non-fat yogurt. None of the tiendas around me nor Espinos have low-fat or non-fat yogurt. At least not yesterday. I'll need to make a trip to Mega and see if they have it. If I can find the yogurt before the dill goes bad, the potato, chive and dill loaf will be made and reported on.