English Muffins

  *I was given this recipe from, of all people, an Italian grandmother when I spent some time in Alabama in the 70’s.  This is a very old “old-country” recipe, so don’t expect the finished muffins to look like the “boughten” sort.  Requires cast-iron cookware.

6-8 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 package or 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup shortening
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 cups whole milk
Oven:  375°

In saucepan, heat milk, sugar and shortening just until shortening begins to melt cool to lukewarm.  In large bread bowl, stir 2 1/2 cups flour together with yeast.  Beat in the cooled liquid and mix on medium speed of mixer for 3-5 minutes or until gluten strands appear.  Add enough remaining flour to create a soft dough.  Knead on floured surface or with mixer and dough hooks until dough is smooth and springy to touch.  Shape into a ball and place in greased bowl, turning once to coat.  Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk.  Punch down, turn out onto floured surface and roll out no more than 1/8” thick.  Cut into desired shapes and bake in an ungreased cast iron pan, turning once during baking, until golden brown.  Cool on racks.
Will make 10-12 muffins.

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