by Brenda W. Clough
This recipe comes from the English TV show The Great British Bake-Off, and must therefore be deemed utterly authentic.
It is in fact a great deal like the Thomas’s English muffin — a yeast dough, with egg and milk and chunks of better in it. The yeast moves it away from the American baking-powder biscuit. And instead of baking the things in an oven (which is how my farm-market artisanal English muffins are clearly made) you roll the dough like biscuit or scone dough, and cut out rounds. These are sprinkled with semolina and fried on an iron griddle, crumpet style. Only the yeast keeps them from being pancakes, and the thickness of the dough (so that rings are not needed) keeps them from being crumpets. (What does it mean a ‘strong’ flour? I assume this refers to the hardness or the softness of the wheat?) I need to know — am seriously tempted to make a batch, and report back.
These are the muffins that Lord Peter Wimsey is regaled with, when he visits the Rev. Venables in The N\ine Tailors. I just knew he was not eating a cupcake-like object with pecans on top. There is a not dissimilar Chinese recipe, which calls for the addition of scallions — it comes up more savory, and is served with a meal — here is a recipe. Yeast and/or baking powder is much less often used in Asian cooking, however, and you’ll not that this recipe is entirely free of them. It comes up like a croissant, flakty because of the folding it over and over.