Going ‘out’ for breakfast has always been something of a treat; the joy of someone else cooking your meal. But, eating out all the time can be expensive, so here’s a couple of menu classics that you can make at home; an English Muffin and a Classic Bagel.

These two simple recipes form the foundation of many menu classics; eggs Benedict, eggs Florentine, eggs Royale, sausage muffin, egg and sausage muffin, bacon and egg muffin, and of course the ‘gram worthy bagel with smoked salmon and cream cheese to name but a few.

Most cafes and restaurants will charge a small fortune for these dishes. But, can you make them at home, and do they taste as good? The answer might surprise you.

Absolutely! There’s nothing complicated or expensive about them. True, the recipes can be a little time consuming, but with some planning you’ll be eating ‘out’ at home by morning and for a fraction of the cost!

English Muffins

Timing and the process of making an English muffin and the classic Bagel

So, how complicated are we talking? It’s more about preparation than complication. Both of these recipes need time to develop their flavour, and for the yeast to do its thing. But the good news is, you won’t need any fancy equipment to make them, they’re as basic as it comes.

Making an English muffin timeline

What I’d recommend is to work backwards; what time would you like to eat them, then reverse the process. For example; I want to serve eggs Benedict this morning at 10am. The English muffins take 10mins to cook + 30mins cooling before eating = 9.20am ‘cooking process’. It’ll take me about 10mins to do the griddling, and another 30mins resting and proofing = 8.40am.

Now, it’ll take me about 10min to cut them all, and another 15mins to mix the dough, and 1 hour for it to prove, that means 7.15am for a start time for me. That timeline then tells me that I should make my ‘starter’ the afternoon/evening before, and leave it out on the counter overnight to do it’s thing while I sleep. Sounds like a plan to me!

It’s a similar situation with making bagels. It’s all in the preparation and timing, and it’s really not complicated at all once you know what you’re doing!

Making a classic Bagel timeline

Again, a 10am serving time and we’ll work backwards; cooling on a wire rack is 15mins, plus 10mins hardening in the oven and 20mins baking = 9.15am. From there it’s garnish and boiling, so that’s another 30mins, then there’s 15mins resting and 15mins rolling and shaping, so now we’re looking at 8:15am for taking the dough from the fridge and getting started.

Wait, the dough’s in the fridge? Yep, unlike the English muffins above, bagel dough does it’s thing in the fridge where the cooler temperatures will help develop a much stronger flavour. So what time do you make the dough? Just like with the muffins, the afternoon/evening before is perfect!

So now you’re probably wondering what you’re going to need to make them. Well, I have some great news there, you won’t need much! In both cases, I’d recommend a stand mixer, as mixing these doughs by hand can be pretty gruelling.

Apart from that, the following will keep you out of trouble:

English Muffin Equipment:

Classic Bagel Equipment:

As I said, there’s nothing complicated about these recipes, it just takes a bit of planning and thinking ahead – but then, why wouldn’t you want to think about enjoying great food?! With that said, here’s what you’ll need for the ingredients.

English Muffin Ingredients:

Classic Bagel Ingredients:

And just like that, it’s on to the fun stuff; making some great tasting English muffins with this easy to follow recipe. It’s so easy, you’ll be making them time after time, which is great as you can use the same starter and the flavour will just get better and better.

How to make English Muffin:

Here’s the best recipe for English muffins, it’s my easy to follow recipe, so you know you’re on a winner!

English Muffins

Prep Time: Cook Time: Total Time: Yield: 16
Course Afternoon Tea, Baking, Breakfast, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American, Australian, British, European
Keyword bacon, benedict, breakfast, eggs, eggs benedict, english muffin, florentine, mcmuffin, mini pizza, mini pizzas, muffin, royale, sausage
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Chilling 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 40 minutes
Servings 24 Portions

Equipment

  • Mixing bowls
  • Stand mixer
  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • Scone/biscuit cutter
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Heavy-based pan or griddle

Ingredients

Starter

  • 500 ml Water (cups) lukewarm
  • 400 gr Bread flour (2 ⅔cups)
  • 5 gr Instant Dry Yeast (1 ¼tsp)
  • 6 gr Honey (1tsp)

Dough

  • 600 gr Bread flour (4cups)
  • 30 gr Butter (2Tbsp), at room temperature
  • 310 ml Water (1 ¼cups) lukewarm
  • 300 gr Starter, (1cup+ 2 Tbsp)
  • 8 gr Instant Dry Yeast, (2 ¼tsp/1 pkg) You can use Active Dry yeast, just activate it first!
  • 15 gr Salt (1Tbsp)
  • 12 gr Sugar (½Tbsp)
  • Cornmeal/Polenta for sprinkling

Instructions

Starter

  • Begin the starter 12 to 24 hours before making the dough. Ideally, the afternoon/evening before you when you'll want them for breakfast.
  • Put the water, honey, and yeast in a large bowl, and stir to dissolve. When the yeast is fully dissolved, and bubble start to form (the yeast is now active), add the flour and stir until fully incorporated and is thick and stretchy.
  • Place a tea towel to cover the bowl - make sure to use a large bowl, as the batter will expand. Leave on a counter all day, or over night.
  • This starter will provide enough base for more than this batch of muffins. To keep it going, just feed it every other day, and store it in the fridge.
    The longer the starter is kept and feed, the greater the depth of flavour your muffins will have. To feed this starter, weigh out a ratio of 1:1 starter and flour/water.
    For example; 100gr starter needs 50gr flour and 50gr water. This will then create 200gr starter. The next feeding, 2 days later, will be 1:1 again; 200g starter needs 100gr flour and 100gr water = 400gr starter.
    From that 400gr you can take 300gr of starter for muffins, and begin the feeding timeline again.

Dough

  • In a stand mixer bowl, cut the flour and butter together until no pieces of butter can be seen.
  • In a bowl or jug, mix together the water, yeast, salt, and sugar, and mix to combine. Then add this to the flour and the starter, continue to mix until a ball of dough is formed.
    Knead the dough in the bowl for 5mins, until smooth and stretchy. Then place the dough in a greased bowl, cover, and rest until doubled in size - about an hour.
  • Lay a sheet of baking parchment paper on a large baking sheet, and scatter cornmeal/polenta loosely over the top.
    Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface, and press it out until 1.5cm/½-inch thick. Then, using a scone/biscuit cutter, about 3½-inch/8cm round, cut the muffins.
    Place the cut discs on the cornmeal/polenta tray, and cover with a tea towel before allowing to rest/prove for 20-30mins.
  • Heat your oven to 200˚C/400˚F.
  • Over med-high heat, warm a greased griddle or heavy-based pan until hot. Cook the muffins for 2mins on each side - don't crowd the muffins, do them in small batches.
  • Bake the muffins for approx. 10mins, or until lightly browned.
  • Remove from the oven, and rest for at least 30 minutes before eating.
  • To open a muffin, use a fork and pierce your way around the edge of the muffin. Push the prongs of the fork all the way in, and the muffin will easily tear apart leaving lots of crags and dips for your butter or other toppings.

How to make Classic Bagel

Ready for more breakfast deliciousness? Then it’s time to make some bagels with the best bagel recipe, and this is my super easy bagel recipe. Mmm, I can smell them already…

Classic Bagel

Whether it's with lox (smoked salmon) and cream cheese, or with maple-coated bacon and a poached egg, the classic bagel is your go-to breakfast staple. Served fresh, with a cup of coffee, it's the perfect start to a busy day!
Course Afternoon Tea, Baking, Bread, Breakfast, Entree, Lunch, Main Course, Snack
Cuisine American, European, Jewish, World
Keyword bagel, bake, boil, breakfast, classic, lox, lunch, smoked salmon
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Overnight Chilling 8 hours
Total Time 9 hours 30 minutes
Servings 12 Portions

Equipment

  • Large mixing bowl
  • Large wide saucepan
  • Stand mixer
  • Scale
  • Spider/slotted spoon
  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • Baking sheet
  • pastry brush
  • Parchment paper

Ingredients

Starter

  • 500 ml Water (2 ¼cups) warm - about 43˚C/110˚F
  • 4 gr Instant Dry Yeast (1tsp) You can use Active Dry Yeast, but remember to activate it first!
  • 450 gr Bread flour (3cups)

Dough

  • 3 gr Instant Dry Yeast (¾tsp)
  • 30 gr Honey (2Tbsp)
  • 375 gr Bread flour (2 ½cups)
  • 15 gr Salt (1Tbsp)

Garnish

  • 30 gr Honey (2Tbsp)
  • 5 gr Baking soda (1tsp)
  • 1 egg white lightly whisked
  • poppy seeds, sesame seeds, onion flakes, etc for topping

Instructions

Starter

  • To make the starter, Combine all the starter ingredients together in a large bowl - a thick batter will form. Let this rest for 10 minutes.

Dough

  • Add the starter, yeast, honey, flour and salt and mix using a dough hook, on a low speed, until a dough is formed. Turn up the speed 1 level and knead for 5-8 mins until dough is smooth and stretchy.
  • Grease a large bowl, and place the dough inside, covering with a tea towel. Allow to rest for 1hr before placing in the fridge overnight.
  • Heat your oven to 220˚C/425˚F,
    Heat a large stockpot or saucepan with approx. 2.5lt of boiling water, and add the honey and baking soda.
    Lining baking trays with parchment paper.
  • Remove dough from fridge and divide the dough into 12 evenly weighted pieces - use your scales to achieve this. Roll each piece into a small ball.

Shaping & Boiling

  • You have two shaping options: Ball & Hole, or Roll & Twist.
  • Ball & Hole – flatten out the ball of dough, then pierce with your finger to begin the hole. Then, wiggle your finger whilst using your other hand to pull the dough away from your finger, creating an ever grown hole in the dough.
    This method will give you a wider and flatter bagel.
  • Roll & Twist – roll each piece of dough out into a 20-25cm (8inches) length is formed, then overlap one end with the other, pressing both ends firmly together.
    This method give a narrower and higher bagel shape.
  • Place the bagels on a parchment lined baking tray and cover with a tea towel. Let them rest for 15-20mins.
  • When ready, use a slotted spoon/spider to carefully lower the bagels into the water. Don't crowd them in the pan, they must have room to swim with touching each other. When poached, use the slotted spoon/spider to place them back on the tray.
    Poach them for between 1½ to 2½ minutes, turning them over halfway through. The longer the poach, the chewier the bagel will be.

Garnish & Baking

  • Coat the top of each bagel with egg white, then scatter a choice of topping.
  • Place the bagels in the oven for 20mins or until dark golden in colour. At this point, turn off the oven, keeping the door ajar, and leave for a further 10mins.
    Place the bagels on a cooling rack, and allow to cool before eating.
  • Bagels are best eaten on the day, but are still great for up to 2 days. You can also toast them, or finely slice them and dry them out as alternatives to croutons!

Okay folks, that’s it for this week. Sorry about not posting last week, but you’ve definitely had a bumper-baking weekend this weekend with three great recipes! If you haven’t already done so, check out our perfect light and fluffy pancakes, they’re a great breakfast staple too!

Thanks for checking out this post on how to make english muffins and how to make classic bagels. I hope you make them soon! If you do, please come back and post a comment, or share a photo with the tag: #LarderPantryandGarden.

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