Ok, so I wanted to make muffins for breakfast today. The new cookbook I got is Healthy Bread in 5 Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois. I had borrowed their first cookbook (Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day) from the library, and I really liked it. So, I decided to buy it and the Healthy Bread cookbook together. The premise of these books is that you can make truly great bread in only 5 minutes of active time a day! It’s true, it really does work! The bread dough is no-knead, it’s designed to last in the fridge for up to 2 weeks (depending on the dough), and it makes enough dough for approximately 4 loaves . I love the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes and I would highly recommend it! Making bread this way is so easy and so impressive!
I had made a recipe (the master recipe for a round loaf, boule) from the Artisan book a few times, and I found it to be delicious and versatile (I used it for bread, focaccia and pizza)! I thought that these books were amazing, and nothing could go wrong.
Well, I made these muffins for breakfast this morning– after making the dough last night. The idea is great, so I think I’m going to try the recipe again, but they were not very good. The muffins are not really muffins, but they are more like buns. We found them to be lacking in flavour. The recipe called for mixed frozen berries, but I only had frozen blueberries on hand. Also, I’m not sure if I used enough salt. My dough didn’t rise as fast as I thought it should, but I think that might be because my blueberries were not fully defrosted. I also could not find white whole-wheat flour, as the recipe called for, so I used regular whole-wheat flour. This may have contributed to the recipe not turning out quite right. I did love the raw sugar sprinkled on top, though.
So, next time, I think I am going to use mixed frozen berries, but make sure they are defrosted all of the way first. I’m also going to add some more salt and see if that helps improve the flavour. I’m going to try baking the remaining bread into a loaf to take to school on Monday for the staff. I know that the dough changes characteristics a bit based on how long it sits, so maybe that will be the secret.
Whole Wheat Berry Muffins
adapted from Healthy Bread in 5 Minutes a Day
4 cups white whole-wheat flour (I used regular whole-wheat)
4 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 Tbsp yeast
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
1/4 cup vital wheat gluten (I found it in the flour aisle at Safeway)
2-1/4 cups lukewarm water
1/4 cup honey
3 cups mixed frozen berries and their juices, defrosted
Egg wash (1 egg beat with 1 Tbsp water)
Raw sugar for sprinkling on top
Mix together the flours, yeast, salt and vital wheat gluten in a large bowl. Combine the water, honey and berries, then mix with the dry ingredients (I used my stand mixer with the paddle attachment). You can use a spoon, but may need to use wet hands to incorporate all ingredients. Put the dough in a large container, and cover, but not airtight and allow the dough to rest at room temperature for two hours. Refrigerate dough in a covered, not airtight container for up to five days.
To make muffins: grease a muffin pan. Cut off a piece of dough that is about the size of a cantaloupe. Divide this ball into 12 equal pieces(about the size of a golf ball). Shape each one into a smooth ball by stretching the dough to the bottom of the ball. Place balls into prepared muffin tin. Let them rest, lightly covered, for 40 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Just before baking, brush muffins with egg wash and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake for about 20 minutes, until nicely browned and firm. Remove the muffins from tin, and allow them to cool a bit before eating.
Let me know if you try them and find a trick that works!
The Hungry Teacher